is much speculation as to the origin of the Craighead name. Early bibliographies suggest the spellings to include Craighead, Craighede, Craigdaillie, Craigdallie, and these spellings frequently changed, even within a single family. It is believed that the family name Craighead originated in the area which nowadays makes up the border areas between England and Scotland. It has been suggested that we are descended from a natural son of the Craigs of Riccarton and settled in Dailly, Ayrshire, Scotland about the year 1000. From the 11th to the 17th centuries there was great turmoil in these borderland areas and the people fled to various other places including Ireland and northern Scotland.
A well documented family history of Reverend Thomas Craighead states that he was born in 1658, son of Rev. Robert Craighead, in this borderland area and removed to Ireland. After religious turmoil there, he moved back to Scotland only to relocate again to Ireland. In the year 1715, he moved his family to America and settled in New England. Most Craigheads now living in the United States can trace their ancestry back to this Rev. Thomas Craighead.
In contrast, the Craigheads, our ancestors, that settled in Canada emigrated from the parishes of Cruden and Old Deer in the county of Aberdeenshire in northeast Scotland, in the year 1844. We do not know when they first settled in Aberdeenshire since there are no written records until the Old Parochial Registers of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland which started recording births, marriages and deaths early in 1700ís.
Our first recorded ancestor was George Craighead
who lived in the parish of Cruden and had five children baptized; William
in 1717, Isobel in 1720, Elspet in 1722, Alexander in 1725 and George in 1727. At the same period of time two other Craighead families, Alexander and Thomas, were recording baptisms of their children. These three young men could very well have been brothers.
In 1844, George and Elspet Craighead
along with their family and William Craighead
, a son of Georgeís first cousin, emigrated to Seymour Township in Northumberland County, Ontario, where they began farming near the rural community of Burnbrae, east of the town of Campbellford. On 21 December 1844, William
, daughter of George Craighead
, at the Burnbrae Presbyterian Church.
The Craighead and the Benedict families joined together in 1969 when John Edward Craighead
, 8th generation, married Dorothy June Benedict
, 10th generation.
The first Craighead was George Craighead
, born about 1680.
Descendancy Chart for GeorgeCraighead1680
- 05 Dec 2005
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