Kurkbay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Kurkbay is one of the thousands of new names that the Norman Conquest brought to England in 1066. The Kurkbay family lived at Kirkby in Furness. The name Kirkby means village with a church.
Early Origins of the Kurkbay family
The surname Kurkbay was first found in Lancashire. One of the first recorded references to the name was John Kirkby (died 26 March 1290,) an English ecclesiastic and statesman. "John de Kirkeby, [was] Bishop of Ely in 1286, and founder of Ely Palace, Holborn."  He acted as keeper of the great seal during the frequent absences of the chancellor, Robert Burnell, during the reign of Henry III. He was Lord Treasurer from January 1284 to his death. On 26 July 1286, he was elected Bishop of Ely, a post he held until his death.
Another John de Kirkby (d. 1352) was Bishop of Carlisle, an Augustinian canon at Carlisle and later prior of the house.
Early History of the Kurkbay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kurkbay research. Another 128 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1816, 1548, 1690, 1753, 1625, 1681, 1661, 1681, 1649, 1709, 1693, 1702, 1708, 1658, 1703, 1634, 1690 and 1753 are included under the topic Early Kurkbay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kurkbay Spelling Variations
Multitudes of spelling variations are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled Kirkby, Kirby, Kerribly, Kerwick, O'Kerwick and many more.
Early Notables of the Kurkbay family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Thomas Kirkby, rector of the church of St. Michael in Aughton, Lancashire in 1548 ; John Kirby (1690-1753), an English land surveyor and topographer, best known for his book The Suffolk Traveller; Richard Kirkby (c.1625-1681), an English politician, from Kirkby Ireleth in Lancashire. He was a Justice of the Peace and Member of Parliament for Lancaster (1661-1681). His son Colonel Roger Kirkby (c.1649-1709) was an English soldier and politician. He was Governor of...
Another 80 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kurkbay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Kurkbay family to Ireland
Some of the Kurkbay 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 Kurkbay family
Because of this political and religious unrest within English society, many people decided to immigrate to the colonies. Families left for Ireland, North America, and Australia in enormous numbers, traveling at high cost in extremely inhospitable conditions. The New World in particular was a desirable destination, but the long voyage caused many to arrive sick and starving. Those who made it, though, were welcomed by opportunities far greater than they had known at home in England. Many of these families went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Kurkbay or a variant listed above: Thomas Kirby settled in Barbados in 1663; along with Rebecca and Henry; James Kirby settled in Virginia in 1651 along with Humphrey and Alice his wife.
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- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ 'Townships: Scarisbrick', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 3, ed. William Farrer and J Brownbill (London, 1907), pp. 265-276. British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/lancs/vol3/pp265-276 [accessed 21 January 2017].