Edited and published by Marilyn Andrews Kidwell

The KIDWELL GENEALOGY home page has a detailed index of over 12,000 Kidwells - free for public use!

Of all the references I have accumulated I have found no indication so far that the names KIDWELL and KETTLE / KITTLE may be from the same source. I do not know the original source of the name, but all KIDWELLs seem to originate from the North Devon area around Barnstaple, the earliest mentions I have being in the 1600s. There are later groups of KIDWELLs appearing in the Malling (Kent) area (1750s) although these may be corrupted from the name KADWELL, which has a very large grouping in this area.

Odd families appear in isolated areas such as the Norfolk family which you have on your database, and in Gloucester and Portsmouth.
With regards to my own lineage, my great grandfather was recorded as KIDWELL on his death and the 1890, 1880 and 1870 censuses, but was married as a KEDWELL.

All American KIDWELLs I have been in touch with are convinced that the name is derived from the South Wales town of KIDWELLY even to the extent of using Kidwelly Castle on the KIDWELL FAMILY ASSOCIATION notepaper, however I have found no link with the town at all.

The surname appears to be much more common in the States, with about 2000 people bearing the name, against about 150 in England and Wales.

Adrian Kidwell
Kidwell One Name Study
21 Oakhill Road
KT21 2JG

Last update
8 January 2000
Kettle Genealogy
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