Families

Of course no family line is alone in its history. Although a surname passes down from the father from generation to generation, through marriage there are many lineages woven together to form a unique ancestry. This section explores some of the many families of our particular branch of the George family.

Many of the surname histories have been drawn from the Internet Surname Database and do not have the same level of research as the four main family names.

The coat of arms displayed here are only used to show the family relationships and are do not necessarily belong to a specific individual in our family. For interest, this image shows all of the known coat of arms for our branch of these families arranged in a tree of ancestry.

Dagg

The Dagg family married into the George family though Arthur George and Ethel Dagg in 1907.

The family was originally from Borrisokane, Tipperary, Ireland and immigrated to Huntley township, Carleton county in Ontario, Canada in 1837. They arrived in Pakenham and finally settled in Carleton County, Ontario. They were farmers and were familiar with the Blackwell family.

There is this wonderful website by Jann Cullen on Dagg family history, including the Canadian branch. From it we learn that "the early Dagg families in Ireland came from a moderate upper class English background.  Though not overtly rich or peers of the realm, their family was considered important enough for their lineage to be chronicled by the Royal heralds as one of the distinguished families of Cornwall.  Their children married into the best families, attended the best schools and began their military careers as officers.  Dagg sons attended Trinity College, in Dublin for more than a hundred years.  Historical records indicate several Daggs served in military posts in Cork city, intermarried there with other prominent and even noble families."

"From about 1655 to the late 1680’s, lands began to open up in Northern Tipperary, and were granted in the main to Cromwellian officers, and to a lesser extent, soldiers.  According to A. Murray Robertson’s research, in about 1660 two Dagg brothers were granted lands near Borrisokane; they are believed to have been junior officers.  Unlike the more senior officers, who often sublet or sold their grants, the Dagg brothers kept their land and set about creating a legacy that would go down throughout the centuries and across all the continents of the world.  Most of the Dagg families with Tipperary ancestry likely came from one of these two original brothers."

This surname in its various spelling forms, is surely one of the most unusual and interesting on record. It derives from the Old French word "Dague", meaning knife or dagger, and was a Norman introduction after the 1066 Conquest. The name is a medieval metonymic for one who habitually carried a dagger, or who was a manufacturer of such weapons. As the carrying of any arms was illegal, it is probable that the original nameholders, if not makers, were part of an official guard or even professional assassins, although this latter suggestion seems unlikely. The name is found in a variety of spelling forms; the diminutive Daggett, meaning "little Dagg" or "son of Dagg", was prominent in Yorkshire, where it has been suggested that the name forms derive not from the French, but from the Norse-Viking "Dag", meaning "day", an early personal name. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

For more on the history of our branch of the Dagg family see here.

 

Smith

The Smith family married into the George family through William George and Mary Louise Smith in 1882. The family was originally from England but not much is known about their past.

Recorded in the spellings of Smith, Smithe, Smythe, and the patronymics Smiths, and Smithson, this is the most popular surname in the English speaking world by a considerable margin. Of pre 7th century Anglo-Saxon origins, it derives from the word 'smitan' meaning 'to smite' and as such is believed to have described not a worker in iron, but a soldier, one who smote. That he also probably wore armour, which he would have been required to repair, may have lead to the secondary meaning. The famous Anglo-Saxon Chronicles sometimes known as the first newspaper, in the 9th century a.d. uses the expression 'War-Smith' to describe a valiant warrior, whilst the later medieval Guild List of specialist trades has blacksmith, whitesmith, tinsmith, goldsmith and silversmith amongst its many members, but no trade of 'smith'. These descriptions of the skilled workers of the Middle Ages were exact, and it is our opinion after studying many early records that the original smiths were probably the guards of the local lord of the manor. This would account for the singular popularity of the name, as the early social records indicate that the trades of tailor and baker were much more prevalent than that of Smith in any form. What is certain is that over five hundred coats of arms have been granted to Smith nameholders, surely an indication of the soldier background, rather than a humble ironworker. The great family Smith is 'first' in all major cities of the English speaking world, yet curiously the greatest concentration of Smith's are in Aberdeenshire, Scotland! Why this should be so is far from clear.

 

Blackwell

The Blackwell family married into the Dagg family through Thomas Dagg and Susannah Blackwell in 1885.

The family was originally from Tipperary, Ireland and immigrated to Canada in 1839. They were farmers and were familiar with the Dagg family.

This ancient surname is of Olde English and Anglo-Saxon origins. It is locational from any of the places called Blackwell in the counties of Derbyshire, Durham and Worcestershire. These were recorded as "Blacheuuelle" in the Domesday Book for Derbyshire in 1086, and as "Blacwaelle" in the Saxon Cartularium of Durham, even earlier in 964 a.d. The placename itself means "black stream", from the pre 7th century elements "blaec", generally meaning "dark coloured", and referring to the colour of the water, and "waella", a spring or branch of a main stream. The surname may also be topographical for a dweller by a black stream. The surname is one of the earliest on record.

 

Curtis

The Curtis family married into the George family through William George and Eliza Curtis in 1847.

The Curtis family appears to have moved to Ontario from either New York state or the Worcester region around 1825-1830. While this particular branch of the Curtis family were farmers, their ancestors had a long history as a founding family of Massachusetts, and were among the earliest settlers to the new world. Many ancestors of this family were also military men, including Captain Samuel Curtis Jr, and Lt Colonel Benjamin Flagg, who distinguished themselves fighting in the Revolutionary War. Colonel Flagg's family home is on the National Register of Historic Places.

The family line is very well documented and information can be found in numerous locations.

An abbreviation of courteous. It may be from Curthose, a name given for wearing short hose, as the name Curtmantle was given to Henry the Second of England, from his introducing the fashion of wearing shorter mantles than had been previously used.  This name derives from the Old French "Corteis" or "Curteis" meaning "refined" or "accomplished" and was originally given as a nickname to a man of good education. One Curteis de (of) Capella appears in the 1130 Pipe Rolls of Warwickshire.

 

Pockett

The Pockett family married into the Smith family through Matthew Smith and Prudence Pockett in 1862.

The family was originally from Gloucestershire, England and immigrated to Canada around 1855. Before that however the family was from Glos, Calvados, Basse-Normandie, France in the 18th century.

More information is found about the family in The Pocketts 1808-1998 by Sandra Moulton. This photo shows Jacob Samuel Pockett around 1880.

This interesting name is a dialectual variant of the metonymic occupational name Poke, which derives from the Middle English 'poke' a purse or bag. Thus it describes a maker of bags and purses or possibly a nickname for one who carried a distinctive bag. In the modern idiom the forms include Poucher, Pouch, Pougher and Poche.

 

Armitage

The Armitage family married into the Blackwell family through James Blackwell and Elizabeth Armitage in 1860.

The family was originally from Tipperary, Ireland and immigrated to Canada in 1860. They were farmers.

Recorded in a number of spellings including Armitage, Armytage, Armatidge, Hermitage and others, this is an Anglo-French surname. It derives from the Old French word "hermite", from the Greek "eremos", meaning solitary, and was originally given either as a topographical name to someone who lived by a hermitage, or a place of learning, or as a locational name from any of the places named with the above word. These places include Hermitage in Durham, Northumberland, Dorset, Berkshire and Sussex, and Armitage in Staffordshire.

 

Wall

The Wall family married into the Dagg family through John Dagg and Ellen Wall in 1858.

They were farmers.

Recorded in over forty spellings including Wall and Walle (English) Wall, Wallmann (German) Wahl and the ornamentals Wallenberg and Wahlberg (Swedish), it is recorded in many parts of Northern Europe. All nationalities are slightly different in meaning. If English or German it means a defensive wall and so could refer to a habitational name.

 

Immigrants to the New World

Below are a list of immigrants important to our modern George family in Canada.

  Year Origin Boarded Landed Destination Ship
Henry Curtis 17/4/1635 Essex, England ? New England Massachusetts The Elizabeth and Anne
John Smith and family 1830s England ? ? Ontario ?
John Wall and family ~1830 Hampshire, England ? ? Carleton, Ontario ?
Thomas Dagg and family 1837 Tipperary, Ireland ? Pakenham Carleton, Ontario ?
George Blackwell and family 1839 Tipperary, Ireland ? ? Ontario ?
William George and family ~1842 St Teath, Cornwall Padstow? Quebec? Halidmand, Ontario Clio?
Jacob Pockett and family ~1855 Gloucestershire, England ? ? Halidmand, Ontario ?
James Armitage and family 1860 Tipperary, Ireland ? ? ? ?