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A Discussion on Origin of Hosea Kingrea (Floyd Co, VA)
Posted by: Namloos (ID *****6283) Date: August 16, 2002 at 08:01:52
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The following is a cross-post that originally appeared at the Kingrea Family Forum ( I hope that this message is within the guidelines required by


I find it odd that searches for telephone numbers or e-mail addresses reveal no Kingreas outside of the United States. White Page Directory Searches for the name “Kingrea” returned no results in the countries of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Germany and parts of the United Kingdom.

It appears reasonable to assume that were there any Kingreas in the world besides the United States, that their numbers would be large, that many would be mentioned in historical records, and that more than a few of them would be taking advantage of the technological opportunities that most people in developed countries have access.

What could account for such an absence in European countries (that for as long as I can remember) represented the most reasonable theoretical origin of Hosea Kingrea?

It has been suggested in the past that Kingrea is a mispronunciation of the name Gingrich, and indeed, there is reference to this at the Kingree Family Forum (, although the spelling is Gingerich. Gingrich and its derivations are decidedly of Scottish origin, however; there is no evidence to support such a supposition. Perhaps there is, in some genaeological record, mention of a Hosea Gingrich.

It is probable that Kingrea is a manufactured name. Perhaps Hosea was hiding his past in some way, producing a faux moniker in order to protect himself from discovery. There is little that could prove this save some strikingly revolutionary document.

Perhaps some clues can be found by examining ancient linguistic history. For example, my partner recently met a person claiming to speak a Scottish dialect of Gaelic. He posited that the phrase “king rea” in this dialect could be interpreted to mean “beam of light”. A brief search at the online English-Gaelic dictionary ( revealed that at least part of this could be true. The word “rea” indeed could mean “beam”, but seems to more properly be interpreted as a beam of wood. Additionally, this usage of “rea” appears to be culled from a more ancient derivation, which could include the concept of light. Modern usage seems exclusively centered around royalty (perhaps derived from sp. rey or fr. roi). The word “king” has no meaning outside that of royalty, but perhaps there is an “old gaelic” which appropriates this word for that of “light”.

Searches for “king”, “rea” and “king rea” in other languages has also proved fruitless. Initial research has been largely unsuccessful except as a means of ruling out certain languages. Deutsch, Finnish, Danish, Dutch, Norwegian, and Swedish have so far proven to be dead ends.

I look forward to hearing suggestions concerning this or any other research directions to take.



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