Kenneir History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Kenneir family saga is rooted in the people of the Pictish Clan of ancient Scotland. The Kenneir family lived in the lands of Kinnear, which lie near Wormit in the county of Fife. [1] The name literally means "chieftain." [2]

Early Origins of the Kenneir family

The surname Kenneir was first found in Fife, from the lands of Kin-near near Wormit. The family descend from "Symon, son of Michael, [who] gave a carucate of land of Cathelai to the church of St. Andrews. His grant was confirmed by King Malcolm IV, and King William confirmed the grant of Chathelach, with common pasture for twenty-four beasts, and eighty sheep, which Symon, son of Michael gave, and his son Alan confirmed. The descendants of Symon took the name of Kinnear, and were the vassals of the Priory of St. Andrews in the lands of Kathlac, etc., which they held till the beginning of the eighteenth century. Reginald de Kener witnessed gift of one mark of silver annually by Alexander, earl of Buchan to the Abbey of Arnbroath, c. 1250." [3]

Early History of the Kenneir family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kenneir research. Another 143 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1170, 1216, 1296, 1543, 1600, 1602, 1536, 1574, 1543, 1574, 1477, 1439, 1457, 1782, 1830, 1782, 1802, 1813, 1814 and 1818 are included under the topic Early Kenneir History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Kenneir Spelling Variations

Prior to the invention of the printing press in the last hundred years, documents were basically unique. Names were written according to sound, and often appeared differently each time they were recorded. Spelling variations of the name Kenneir include Kinnear, Kynnier, Kynnair, Kenneir, Kinner, Kinnier, MacEnir and many more.

Early Notables of the Kenneir family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was Petrus Kyrior who was elected common councillor of Aberdeen, 1477; John de Kynor who was admitted burgess of Aberdeen, 1439; and Adam Kynnor in 1457. [3] Sir John MacDonald Kinneir (1782-1830), was Lieutenant-Colonel H.E.I.C.S., traveller and diplomatist, born at Carnden, Linlithgow, on 3 Feb. 1782, and was the son of John Macdonald, comptroller of customs at Borrowstounness, and Mrs. Cecilia Maria Kinneir. "In 1802 he was nominated to a cadetship by Sir William Bensley, under the name...
Another 84 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kenneir Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Kenneir family to Ireland

Some of the Kenneir family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Kenneir family

The freedom of the North American colonies was enticing, and many Scots left to make the great crossing. It was a long and hard journey, but its reward was a place where there was more land than people and tolerance was far easier to come by. Many of these people came together to fight for a new nation in the American War of Independence, while others remained loyal to the old order as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of Scots in North America have recovered much of this heritage in the 20th century through Clan societies and other such organizations. A search of immigration and passenger lists revealed many important and early immigrants to North America bearing the name of Kenneir: John and Elizabeth Kinner settled in New York in 1774; with sons Nicholas and Anthony and daughter Elizabeth; David Kinnear arrived in Philadelphia in 1844.



  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Sims, Clifford Stanley The Origin and Signification of Scottish Surnames. 1862. Print.
  3. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)


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