Keak History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The ancient Anglo-Saxon culture once found in Britain is the soil from which the many generations of the Keak family have grown. The name Keak was given to a member of the family who was a person who because of their physical characteristics and physical abilities was referred to as kedge a Old English word that described someone who was brisk or active. 
Although one notes source has a different understanding of the origin on the name. In this case, Keak is from the "Middle English [word] keech ‘a lump of congealed fat; the fat of a slaughtered animal rolled up into a lump’, used in the 16th century for a butcher: ‘Did not goodwife Keech the Butchers wife come in then?’ (Henry IV); ‘I wonder, That such a Keech can with his very bulke Take vp the Rayes o’ th’ beneficiall Sun, And keepe it from the Earth’ (Henry VIII), where the reference is to Cardinal Wolsey, a butcher’s son. " 
Early Origins of the Keak family
The surname Keak was first found in Cambridgeshire and Surrey where Reginald and Hugo Keche were listed in the Curia Regis Rolls for 1206 and 1219. 
Years later, the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included Peter Kech, Norfolk; and Adam Kyg, Buckinghamshire. 
In Somerset, early rolls there show John Keche holding lands 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) 
In Norfolk, John Keche, was rector of Erpingham in 1430 and "a brass plate in the ancient church of St. Helen's, Norwich, reads: 'Hie jacet corpus Dni. Edmundi Keche, presbyteri' " 
Early History of the Keak family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Keak research. Another 109 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1206, 1620, 1621, 1673, 1686, 1640, 1704 and 1640 are included under the topic Early Keak History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Keak Spelling Variations
Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Keak family name include Ketch, Keech, Keach, Kedge and others.
Early Notables of the Keak family (pre 1700)
Distinguished members of the family include Hugo Ketch of Cheshire; John (Jack) Ketch (died 1686), one of King Charles II's executioners, who became quite infamous for the terrible suffering of his victims; his name has lived on as slang for the gallows or even for death itself.
Benjamin Keach (1640-1704)...
Another 48 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Keak Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Keak family
For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Keak surname or a spelling variation of the name include : Margaret and Susan Ketch, who settled in New England in 1665 with their husbands; as well as John Ketch, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1741.
Related Stories +
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
- ^ Rye, Walter, A History of Norfolk. London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, 1885. Print