Keithley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the name Keithley date back to the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the Keithley family lived in the settlement of Keighley in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The surname Keithley belongs to the large category of Anglo-Saxon habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.

Early Origins of the Keithley family

The surname Keithley was first found in Yorkshire at Keighley, a market-town and parish, and the head of a union, in the E. division of the wapentake of Staincliffe and Ewcross. [1] The first listing of the place name was Chichelai in the Domesday Book of 1086. [2]

"This place, anciently Kyghelay, was for many generations the property of the Kyghelay family, who either gave their name to, or derived it from, the manor; and of whom Gilbertus Kyghelay, of Utley, was buried here in 1203, according to an inscription on a stone still remaining in the parish church. In the reign of Edward I. Henry de Kyghelay, a member of the family, obtained the grant of a weekly market and an annual fair, with privilege of free warren for the inhabitants." [1]

Early History of the Keithley family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Keithley research. Another 94 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1186, 1650, 1719, 1686, 1692, 1621, 1648, 1580, 1643, 1651, 1620, 1621, 1662, 1663, 1789, 1872, 1650, 1719, 1803 and 1824 are included under the topic Early Keithley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Keithley Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Keithley are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Keithley include: Keightley, Keighley, Keitley, Keightly and others.

Early Notables of the Keithley family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Thomas Keightley (1650-1719), an English courtier and official in Ireland, Vice-Treasurer of Ireland in 1686, Commissioner of the Irish Revenue (1692), progenitor of the family in Ireland. He was the "son of William Keightley (b. 1621) of Hertingfordbury, Hertfordshire, by his wife Anne, daughter of John Williams of London, whom he married in 1648 (Chester, Marriage Licenses, ed. Foster, p. 783). His paternal grandfather...
Another 69 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Keithley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Keithley family to Ireland

Some of the Keithley family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 111 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Keithley migration to the United States +

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Keithley or a variant listed above:

Keithley Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Herbert R. Keithley, aged 33, who immigrated to the United States, in 1895
Keithley Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Wm. Keithley, aged 26, who settled in America, in 1918
  • Amy Keithley, aged 28, who landed in America, in 1919

Contemporary Notables of the name Keithley (post 1700) +

  • Joseph P. Keithley, American founder and CEO of Keithley Instruments, Ohio, a measurement and instrument company (1946)
  • Gary Keithley (b. 1951), retired professional American NFL football quarterback
  • Kathleen Keithley, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from California, 2008 [3]
  • June Keithley -Castro (1947-2013), Filipina actress and broadcast journalist


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 27) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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