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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2017

Origins Available: English-Alt, English



Multiple Origins for the Surname Key



The name Key is part of the ancient legacy of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is a product of when the family lived near a dock, and may have been employed there having derived from the Old French word kay, which became kaye, keye, and keay in Old English. These were all words for docks, or quays. The original bearers of the name undoubtedly lived near some docks, and could easily have been workers there. There is also the possibility that the name is derived from the Latin personal name Caius, a name that dates from the Roman occupation of Britain. There is a record of a Britius filius Kay in 1199, in Northants; filius means "son of." There is a third possibility; in the north of England ka was a word for jackdaw (derived from the Old Scandinavian), and was often applied as a nickname; some nicknames became surnames and this could be one of them. However, the majority of examples of this name found in England are of the local type. This makes this name a polygenetic name, which means that it arose spontaneously at different times and places and meant different things.

Key Early Origins



The surname Key was first found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

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Key Spelling Variations


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Key Spelling Variations



The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Key has been spelled many different ways, including Keyes, Key, Keys, Keye, Keyse and others.

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Key Early History


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Key Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Key research. Another 117 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Key History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Key Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Key Early Notables (pre 1700)



More information is included under the topic Early Key Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Key In Ireland


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Key In Ireland



Some of the Key family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 121 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Keys to arrive in North America:

Key Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Martha Key, who arrived in Virginia in 1628 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • John Key, who settled in Barbados in 1634
  • Richard Key, who landed in Virginia in 1637 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Adam Key, who settled in Virginia in 1639
  • Adam Key, who landed in Virginia in 1639 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Key Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Moses Key, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1700 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Eliza Key, who arrived in Virginia in 1702 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Roger Key, who landed in Virginia in 1705 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Thomas Key, who landed in Virginia in 1714 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Philip Key, who arrived in Maryland in 1720 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Key Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Elley Key, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • James Key, who landed in New York, NY in 1811 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Robert Key, aged 22, who arrived in Georgia in 1812 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Johannes Ahlgrin Key, who arrived in Mobile County, Ala in 1840 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Leonard Ash Key, who landed in New York, NY in 1841 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Key Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Mary Key, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "John" in 1840 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) JOHN from London 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840John.htm
  • William Key, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Anson" on September 23, 1843, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Anson voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1843 with 499 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/anson/1843
  • James Key, English convict from Norfolk, who was transported aboard the "Adelaide" on August 08, 1849, settling in Van Diemen's Land and Port Phillip, Australia [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 17) Adelaide voyage to Van Diemen's Land and Port Phillip, Australia in 1849 with 303 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/adelaide/1849
  • Joseph Key, aged 25, a miner, who arrived in South Australia in 1857 aboard the ship "Royal Albert"

Key Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Thomas Key, aged 40, a labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oliver Lang" in 1856
  • Jane Key, aged 41, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oliver Lang" in 1856
  • Elizabeth Key, aged 19, a domestic servant, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oliver Lang" in 1856
  • Mary A. Key, aged 15, a domestic servant, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oliver Lang" in 1856
  • Louisa Key, aged 13, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oliver Lang" in 1856
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

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Contemporary Notables of the name Key (post 1700)


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Contemporary Notables of the name Key (post 1700)



  • Francis Scott Key (1779-1843), American lawyer, author, and amateur poet, from Georgetown, who wrote the lyrics to the United States national anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner"
  • Major-General William Shaffer Key (1889-1959), American Commanding General US Forces Iceland (1943-1944) [5]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2012, March 30) William Key. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Key/William_Shaffer/USA.html
  • James L. Key (1866-1939), American politician who served four terms as mayor of Atlanta
  • David McKendree Key (1824-1900), American Senator and U.S. Postmaster General
  • Alexander Hill Key (1904-1979), American science fiction writer
  • Charles Key, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Oklahoma, 2008 [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
    The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  • Carrolena Key, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from District of Columbia, 1996 [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
    The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  • Carolyn H. Key, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Michigan, 1920 [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
    The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  • Bernard W. Key, American Democrat politician, Candidate in primary for U.S. Representative from Michigan 14th District, 1932 [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
    The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  • Baxter Key, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Tennessee, 1944 [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
    The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  • ... (Another 18 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

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Suggested Readings for the name Key


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Suggested Readings for the name Key



  • Key and Allied Families by Janie Warren Lane.
  • Key is My Name by Irene Frances Key Padgett.

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Motto


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Motto



The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: In Domino confido
Motto Translation: I trust in the Lord.


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Key Family Crest Products


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Key Family Crest Products




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See Also


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See Also




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Citations


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Citations



  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  2. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) JOHN from London 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840John.htm
  3. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Anson voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1843 with 499 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/anson/1843
  4. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 17) Adelaide voyage to Van Diemen's Land and Port Phillip, Australia in 1849 with 303 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/adelaide/1849
  5. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2012, March 30) William Key. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Key/William_Shaffer/USA.html
  6. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html

Other References

  1. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  2. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  3. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  4. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  5. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  6. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  7. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  8. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  9. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  10. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  11. ...

The Key Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Key Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 9 August 2017 at 17:57.

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