Anglo-Saxons. It is a product of their having lived in the settlement of Migley in Durham, or in the place named Midgley in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The surname Medglay 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 Medglay family
Yorkshire at Midgley, a hill-top village in Calderdale in the chapelry of Luddenden, parish and union of Halifax, wapentake of Morley. The village dates back to at least the Domesday Book when it was listed as Micleie and literally meant "wood or clearing infested with midges," from the Old English mycg + leah. CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4) One branch was later found at Thornton, again in the West Riding of Yorkshire. "Leventhorpe Hall, also in the township, was the seat of a distinguished family; and at Headley is an old mansion in the Elizabethan style, in former times occupied by a branch of the Midgleys." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Medglay family
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Medglay Spelling Variations
hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Medglay include Midgley, Midgeley, Midgely, Medgley, Medgely, Medgeley and many more.
Early Notables of the Medglay family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Medglay family to the New World and Oceana
Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Medglay were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Robert and John Medley, who came to Virginia in 1635; Roger Medley settled in Barbados in 1672; John and Benjamin Midgley settled in New York in 1820.
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