The Somerbay surname evolved from any of several places so named in Northern England
. The place name comes from the Old Norse "saurr," meaning "ground," and "the Old English "byr," meaning farm.
Early Origins of the Somerbay family
The surname Somerbay was first found in Yorkshire
where they held a family seat
from very ancient times, as Lords of the manor of Sowerby and the parish, some say well before the Norman Conquest
and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D. The name was spelled in the Domesday Book
as Sorebi. It was recorded in the West Riding of Yorkshire
, and was described as the "king's land" with two churches. It later gave it's name to Sowerby Bridge where Branwell Bronte was born.
Early History of the Somerbay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Somerbay research.Another 108 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1757, 1822 and 1699 are included under the topic Early Somerbay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Somerbay Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred
years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations
are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon
surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Somerbay were recorded, including Sowerby, Sowerbie, Sowersby, Sorebi, Soreby, Soureby, Sowerbutts, Sourbutts and many more.
Early Notables of the Somerbay family (pre 1700)
Another 44 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Somerbay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Somerbay family to the New World and Oceana
To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England
went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Somerbay family emigrate to North America: Charles Sowerby who settled in Philadelphia in 1843; William Sowersby, who arrived in New York State in 1774; and Robert Sowersby, who settled in Texas in 1844..
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