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Surname/tag: Cumbria to the World
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The goal of this project is to ...

Right now this project just has one member, me. I am Carmel Johnson.

Here are some of the tasks that I think need to be done. I'll be working on them, and could use your help.

  • Tracing the Barwis/e family
  • DNA finds
  • spelling variations

Will you join me? Please post a comment here on this page, in G2G using the project tag, or send me a private message. Thanks!

Images: 1
the Barwis Crest
the Barwis Crest

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The earliest mention of the family to appear in records is Alan de Berewyse, who was apparently settled by the 13th century at what is still called Barwise Hall, near Appleby in Westmorland. From the 15th century onwards the name had disappeared from Westmorland, but was scattered around various parts of Cumberland. Here the large majority of the family remained until the 19th century, when family groups were found in Liverpool, the US, Australia, and Canada.

There were many variations of the spelling of the family name, but most commonly "Barwis" from about 1575, then "Barwise" from about 1750 in Cumberland (the earlier spelling persists if the family moved from Cumberland before 1750). According to Bashforth, the name was pronounced "Barrus" by some of its holders - there is the suggestion that the name "Barras" derives from the same root.

posted by Carmel Johnson
My great Grandfather was Henry Machell Barwise born Whitehaven in Dec 1833. His Grandfather was David Barwise but the name varied from Barwis to Barwise and Henry's brothers were listed as Barrowise (you can hear the dialect here). Henry made his way to Australia where he married and had 8 children. Of these 4 lived to marry and have families of their own, I am descended from the youngest of these children, my mother being the youngest granddaughter and born exactly 100 years after Henry.
posted by Carmel Johnson