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Home: Surnames: Mosby Family Genealogy Forum

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Re: Info on British Mosbys
Posted by: Shawn Donat Date: July 04, 2001 at 15:07:02
In Reply to: Info on British Mosbys by Peter Mosby of 1045

Hi Peter,

That the first I have heard of the Danish origin part. I'll have to check my Norman "Occupation" history. My father put together the following. Sounds like you and my father are on the same page.



The origin of the Mosby family has been described by James H. Mosby in his book, Our Noble Heritage: The Mosby Family History, copies of which can be found in comprehensive genealogical libraries, such as the Fort Wayne (Indiana) Genealogical Library, and at the Family History Center, Salt Lake City, Utah. According to James Mosby, the Mosbys originated in Cumberland County, and, in his opinion, were Normans who came to England with William the Conqueror. His research indicates that the male line of the Morisbies ended with Sir Christopher Moriceby, a knight who was buried in St. Andrew's Church in Penrich in 1499. The Mosbys appear to have immigrated at an earlier date into Durham and Yorkshire.
James Mosby states, "Until the fourteenth century, the family is found in West Cumberland, then until the eighteenth in East Cumberland and the flanks of the Pennines. About the sixteenth century some families worked their way down the dales into Yorkshire where they first appear in York and southeast of Leeds. Others moved into Durham and later to the south of England. From Yorkshire one branch emigrated to Australia in 1788, from whom sprang Admiral John Moresby (1830-1922) who surveyed and named Port Moresby in New Guinea, whilst others went from Australia to New Zealand, South Africa, Rhodesia and Kenya."
He continues, "During the early Middle Ages the most common spelling was Moresby, but after the sixteenth century Morrisby took over, preserving the pronunciation of the place name [in Cumberland]. This was the name of the Australian family though Moresby is also found there, deriving from the Durham family. It is still found occasionally in England. In Yorkshire, in the late eighteenth century, the common spelling was Morrisby, but within a period of about twenty years this gave way to Morsby and finally to Mosby and Moseby, which still survive in Leeds. The surname dates from about 1196."
The Mosby family contained in this genealogical study desc from those Mosbys, referred to above, who were evident in Yorkshire and living to the southeast of Leeds, specifically at Kippax, dating from the end of the sixteenth century and in the early part of the seventeenth. By the middle of the sixteen hundreds, there were Mosbys living, in the main, at Kippax, Whitkirk, Methley and Magna Preston. By the middle of the seventeen hundreds the family had become firmly entrenched at Garforth where its men found work in the coal mines, in which they toiled for over a hundred years, until Samuel Mosby left the mines and took his bride to Hull and later to Chatham in Kent. At Garforth, the family multiplied rapidly, bringing forth many males, as well as females. But today, there are no Mosbys to be found there; the only members of this family left presently reside in the eastern suburbs of Leeds, which now encompasses the former parish settlements of Whitkirk and Garforth.


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