Kemish History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Early Origins of the Kemish family
The surname Kemish was first found in Gloucestershire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book,  indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Pickwick or Wickwar, held by Humphrey the Chamberlain, who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086.
Early History of the Kemish family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kemish research. Another 145 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1510, 1600, 1543, 1617, 1641, 1648, 1614, 1658, 1678, 1673, 1702, 1689, 1702, 1688, 1735, 1713, 1715, 1716 and 1734 are included under the topic Early Kemish History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kemish Spelling Variations
Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Kenys, Kemeys, Kemish, Kemis, Keymich and others.
Early Notables of the Kemish family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Charles Kemeys (c.1614-1658), second child of the Kemeys Baronets, a Welsh family of landowners in the county of Monmouthshire, Wales; William Kemeys was High Sheriff of the County of Monmouth in 1678, and listed in Blome's List of Monmouthshire Gentry in...
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kemish Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kemish migration to New Zealand +
Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:
Kemish Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Mr. Thomas Kemish, (b. 1829), aged 27, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Sir Edward Paget" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 2nd July 1856 
- Mrs. Charlotte Kemish, (b. 1832), aged 24, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Sir Edward Paget" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 2nd July 1856 
Contemporary Notables of the name Kemish (post 1700) +
Historic Events for the Kemish family +
- Mr. Colin H T Kemish (b. 1924), English Boy 1st Class serving for the Royal Navy from Guernsey, Channel Island, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking 
- Mr. George Kemish, aged 22, English Fireman/Stoker from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking escaping on life boat 9 
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