What’s in a name … Kreykes, for example

The family name of Kreykes, from which I am one generation removed, is in some ways a mystery. We know that it was brought to Iowa in the 19th century by a family from Rijssen, the Netherlands. Apparently all recorded Kreykes families in the United States in 1920 lived in Iowa, probably northwest Iowa, for that matter. The original Dutch spelling of the name was Kreijkes, and both spellings now seem to be found in both countries. One source says the family came from a place called Kreejkeskamp. Another rumor has spoken of a French Huguenot connection. However, a distant Dutch cousin apparently wrote in 1964 to the Royal Netherlands Academy of Science at Amsterdam to inquire about the meaning of the name Kreijkes, and the letter he received in return suggested that Kreijkes may be derived from a patronym, “son of Kreijke.” The speculation was that an allegedly “sharp and dignified” forefather had obtained the nickname “crow,” which in a certain Dutch dialect is “kreeijke,” with the son of a little crow being “kreeijke(szoon).”  Sounds plausible, though no one is entirely certain, it seems. The sign pictured above was photographed in the 1970s on a visit to Rijssen by my grandparents, whose name was Kreykes. Some maps show a street with the original Dutch spelling, Kreijkesweg. All those with the Kreykes name are believed to be descended from the same family. If that’s you, you’re probably a cousin, so drop me a line…

(Some of the above information taken from The Genealogical and Historical Background of the Kreykes Family and Their Descendants Dating from 1691 to 1977, printed by Pluim Publishing, Inc., Orange City, Iowa.)

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This entry was posted in General, IOWA (Sioux County), Kreykes, NETHERLANDS and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to What’s in a name … Kreykes, for example

  1. My sisters in-laws are Dutch and their family name is DeHaan which means rooster. She said that some conquering army came through in the long ago past and demanded that the Dutch have last names and they just came up with random names as a joke. Hence names like Rooster and Crow. I wonder where the truth lies in this one.

    Good luck with your cousin search!

  2. Pingback: Follow Friday — Good Advice, Sweet Tributes and Grip 2012 « finding forgotten stories

  3. Pingback: Surname Saturday: A street sign collection | Branch and Leaf … a family history blog

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