Today's generation of the Whettlay family bears a name that was brought to England
by the migration wave that was started by the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Whettlay family lived in Somerset
, at the village of Whatley.
Early Origins of the Whettlay family
The surname Whettlay was first found in Somerset
in the village and manor of Whatley near Frome, where they are conjecturally believed to be descended from the possessor of those lands, at the taking of the Domesday Survey
in 1086, John the Usher, from Glastonbury Abbey. The Wheatley variant can be found throughout England
, specifically: Wheatley, Oxfordshire; Wheatley Lane in Lancashire; and North and South Wheatley in Nottinghamshire
. The two latter villages are listed in the Domesday Book
as Watelei and Wateleie. CITATION[CLOSE]
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
Literally, Wheately means "clearing where wheat is grown," from the Old English "hwaete" + "leah." CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
Early History of the Whettlay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Whettlay research.Another 259 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1330, 1582, 1768, 1686, 1742, 1747, 1801, 1753 and 1784 are included under the topic Early Whettlay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Whettlay Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred
years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations
occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Whettlay were recorded, including Whatley, Whatly, Whately, Wheatley, Whetly, Whettell and many more.
Early Notables of the Whettlay family (pre 1700)
Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Whettlay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Whettlay family to the New World and Oceana
The unstable environment in England
at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland
, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Whettlay arrived in North America very early: Richard Whately, who settled in Barbados in 1670; David Whatley settled in Pennsylvania in 1772; J. D. Whatley settled in San Francisco, Cal. in 1850.