The Kenyon One-Name Study in England

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The surname "Kenyon" appears to have originated from the county of Lancashire in England, particularly the Winwick Parish area where there is a "Village of Kenyon" and a "Kenyon Manor"

Most "Kenyon" family groups around the country emanate from Lancashire and the Manor of Kenyon area as does that of the current "Lord Kenyon" whose family history has been well documented from 1154. Consequently, much of the data about this surname originates in the Lancashire area. However, the name spread worldwide during the late 18th and 19th Centuries, and the data we have gathered reflects this migration.

See the spread of Kenyons in the Britain during the 1881 Census in "Kenyon 1881 Census Map."


Proof of the actual origin for the surname is still a mystery at the moment. Ireland and the Isle of Man have been suggested, but the Manor of Kenyon in Lancashire is the strongest contender.

There are variant spellings of the name, books on origins of surnames give the following alternative derivation for one of them, KENNYON. Possibly a modern form of the ancient Irish name "MacConin". This is one of the names taking -- or based on -- the first name of the ancestor's father (patronymic).


As might be expected, many descendants of the first Lord Kenyon feature strongly in various reference books. There are other famous Kenyons though. Click on the name of a subject in this paragraph to read their biography.

Stars of stage and screen, the Kenyon Actors and Actresses.

The famous archeologist Dame Kathleen Mary Kenyon.

The cotton manufacturers James Kenyon & Son Limited of Bury, Lancashire.


There is a theory that the name originates from Ireland, especially among the Kenyon families living around the Machers peninsular and Stranraer areas of Wigtownshire, Scotland. Although only a very few Irish immigrant families bearing this name can be found, these roots are still being investigated.


The name "Kenyon" is used as a main heading in the I.G.I. A number of possible variants such as KENYAN, KENYEN, KENNYON are found in the I.G.I. although we will accept any similar names for investigation.

As an example, the name KENNON can be found in Merseyside and Tyneside, this is believed to be of Irish origin.


These are the major sources for our work


Further contacts may be made on the Kenyon Genealogical Forum.

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Kenyon Genealogical Forum


Please e-mail Rod Clayburn for further details on KENYON family information sharing in UK and EUROPE


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