Show ContentsNancarro History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Nancarro surname is a habitational name taken on from any of several places so named in Cornwall. The place names come from the Cornish words "nans," meaning "valley," and "carow," meaning "a stag."

Early Origins of the Nancarro family

The surname Nancarro was first found in Cornwall where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Nancarrow.

"Nancarrow, in [the parish of St. Michael Penkevil], was in ancient times the seat of a family to whom it imparted its own name. This name is still known in Cornwall; but the residents of Nancarrow have long since become extinct. The old mansion which still exists, is inhabited by some of Lord Falmouth's labourers Tregonian or Treganyan, was also in former ages a seat belonging to a family, bearing its own name." [1]

Early History of the Nancarro family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Nancarro research. Another 72 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Nancarro History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Nancarro Spelling Variations

Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Nancarrow, Nancarro, Nancarroe, Nancarrowe and many more.

Early Notables of the Nancarro family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Nancarro Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

West Indies Nancarro migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [2]
Nancarro Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Ellin Nancarro, who settled in St. Christopher (Saint Kitts) in 1634

  1. Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
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