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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The name McPeak arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The McPeak family lived in Staffordshire. The surname of Peak derives from the Old English word pekke, indicating the top of a mountain or hill, and was a local name distinguishing a person who lived by a prominent peak. 
The surname McPeak was first found in Staffordshire where "among the earliest known bearers of the name are Richard del Pech or del Pek (d. 1196), son of Ranulf, Sheriff of Nottingham, and Willielmus Piec, who was in Winchester in 1194."  Another possible progenitor of the family could have been Uluric Pec c. 1095 who was listed in Suffolk,  but this is believed to be an isolated case of the surname. William de Peke was listed in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex in 1296 and William atte Peke was listed in Devon in 1321. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 lists: Isabell del Pek; and Martyn del Pek. 
Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled MacPeake, Peak, Peake and others.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McPeak research. Another 201 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1284, 1283, 1551, 1619, 1592, 1667 and 1668 are included under the topic Early McPeak History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 129 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McPeak Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Some of the McPeak family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 53 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.
Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with McPeak name or one of its variants:
McPeak Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
McPeak Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
McPeak Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
McPeak Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
The McPeak Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The McPeak 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 2 October 2015 at 13:10.