The origins of the Welsh
name Kidwally go back to the ancient Celtic culture that existed in the hills and Moors
. The forbears that initially held the name Kidwally once lived in the town of Kidwelly, which is situated in the Welsh
region of Dyfed
. The Normans
noted the strategic importance of this town, which is bordered by the coastline and two minor valleys. The town features a magnificent castle which dates from the 13th century; however, this stands on the site of a previous castle built in 1094, by William de Londres. The surname Kidwally belongs to the category of habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.
Early Origins of the Kidwally family
The surname Kidwally was first found in Dyfed
a former county, and the ancient Welsh
Kingdom of Pwyll, Lord of Dyfed
in South-west Wales
, comprised of the present day counties of Pembroke, Carmarthen, and Cardigan
, where they held a family seat
from ancient times.
Early History of the Kidwally family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kidwally research.Another 137 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1094, 1589 and 1747 are included under the topic Early Kidwally History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kidwally Spelling Variations
Compared to other ancient cultures found in the British Isles, the number of Welsh
surnames are relatively few, but there are an inordinately large number of spelling variations
. These spelling variations
began almost as soon as surname usage became common. The most obvious reason was the challenge of translating from Welsh
into English. As a result, people could not specify how to spell their own names leaving the specific recording up to the individual scribe or priest. Those recorders would then spell the names as they heard them, causing many different variations. Later, many Welsh
names were recorded in English. This transliteration process was extremely imprecise since the Brythonic Celtic
language of the Welsh
used many sounds the English language was not accustomed to. Finally, some variations occurred by the individual's design: a branch loyalty within a family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were indicated by spelling variations of one's name. The Kidwally name over the years has been spelled Kidwelly, Kidwelley, Kidwell, Kidwall, Kedwell and others.
Early Notables of the Kidwally family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Kidwally Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Kidwally family to the New World and Oceana
Many people from Wales
joined the general migration to North America in the 19th and 20th centuries, searching for land, work, and freedom. Like the many other immigrants from the British Isles, they made a significant contribution to the development of Canada and the United States. The Welsh
and their descendents added a rich cultural tradition to the newly developed towns, cities, and villages. An investigation of the immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Kidwally: J.H. Kidwell, who sailed to San Francisco in 1851.