Killay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Killay is a name of ancient Anglo-Saxon origin and comes from the family once having lived in Keele, a village and civil parish in northern Staffordshire, or in East Keal or West Keal in Lincolnshire. The surname Killay 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 Killay family
The surname Killay was first found in Lincolnshire where early records reveal that Robert de Kele was listed there in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273.  The same rolls list William de Kele in the same shire.  As far as the origin of the place name Keele is concerned, we must look to the village and parish in Staffordshire where the name was derived from the Old English words "cy" + "hyll," and literally meant "hill where cows graze." The first listing of the place name was found in 1169 when is was listed as Kiel.  Keele Hall is a 19th-century mansion house at Keele, Staffordshire and the eponym of Keele University, officially known as the University of Keele, a public research university near Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire.
Important Dates for the Killay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Killay research. Another 47 words (3 lines of text) covering the years 1562, 1671, 1721, 1673 and 1719 are included under the topic Early Killay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Killay Spelling Variations
Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Killay family name include Keele, Keel, Keal, Keale and others.
Early Notables of the Killay family (pre 1700)
Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Killay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Killay family
For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, Canada, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Killay surname or a spelling variation of the name include: George Keel settled in Barbados in 1685; David and Peter Keel settled in Philadelphia in 1724; Edward Keele settled in New England in 1635; John Keele settled in Barbados in 1685.
You May Also Like
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)