The name ‘Kelley’ originates from Ireland. Derived from the name ‘Kelly’ it is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic name ‘O Ceallaigh’, a ‘descendent of Ceallach’, originally a byname meaning ‘Troublesome’, ‘Contentious’, also said to mean ‘Bright headed’. There were several Irish saints who bore this name, and Kell(e)y is now the most common of Irish surnames. It is also a habitation name from Kelly, Devon, England, named with a Cornish. cogn. of Kelly near Arbroath, Scotland, named with the Gaelic element coille wood,grove. Compiled information from Historical and Private archive’s has confirmed that there has been a family of the name ‘Kelly’ in Devon since ‘Martin de Kelly’ was recored there in there c.1100. The exact period of settlement in North America has not been definately determined but Information extracted from Public and Civil registry archive’s confirm that one of the first settlers was a certain ‘Thomas C. Kelly’, from Ballinaslo… Coat of arms: Sable a lion rampant or between…
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