Monday, April 1, 2013

Blake Newsletter - Volume Two Issue Two 2013

Blake Newsletter

Earliest Records of the Blake family in the United Kingdom

There has been a lot of family lore about the Blake family in the United Kingdom with respect to their origins. In my blog on "Calendar of Patent Rolls - Summary of Blake entries (" I have written up my findings when I extracted the Blake/Blak/le Blake/le Blak surname from these early records which are from the reigns of Henry III (1216-1272) right through to the reign of Henry VI (1422-1462). In all I found 210 items that dealt with the Blake family. The earliest document for a William le Blake was from 30 Jan 1230 and involved a land dispute. The next item was from 1274 for a Richard le Blak a merchant listed as being of Rouen (then the was capital of Normandy).  An amazing find considering the Blake Pedigree Chart which is held by the Swindon and Wiltshire Record Office. The furtherest back listed member of the Blake Pedigree Chart was a Richard Blake/Blaake/Blague living in the time of Edward I and Edward II and deeding property in Essex to the Knights Templar. Although I also discovered that this is an error and that the actual Blake member deeding property in Essex was a Roger Blake from Herefordshire, none the less this very early record does give one pause for thought.

    With regard to the origins of the Blake family of the United Kingdom, I am brought to the thought that this was a surname which was given to individuals that were particularly fair haired/fair complexioned from the gaelic blak which means fair. Surnames were adopted earlier in some European countries than England and certainly Blake has been found in England much earlier than a lot of surnames. The quest continues to find out more about the early Blake family.

WDYTYA 2013 - Conference at Olympia, London, UK

My husband and I attended this years Who Do You Think You Are Conference along with nearly 15,000 others. This was our first Conference in the UK and it was spectacular. We spent most of our time visiting the various Family History booths and I highly recommend such a Conference for those wishing to pursue their UK ancestry.

Because we were in London, we went to Kew and have collected the remainder of the Blake wills and will begin to transcribe them very shortly and they will appear on my blog:
There is a huge number of them and I will probably be a couple of years transcribing all of them. Once again I will attempt to link family wills where that is possible.

Barrie Blake and the Blake Genetic Trait

The Mitchell Library (part of the State Library of New South Wales, Australia: has included the basic details of Barrie Blake's Discovery of the Blake Genetic Trait in their online catalogue, namely:

Blake yDNA study has 61 members although several who have joined with yDNA results do not appear to belong to this grouping and I have placed them in a subgroup on their own to separate them from the Blake lines.

The different haplogroup studies continue to grow and I am hoping that we make it to 100 members with Blake ancestry by the end of the year.

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