William KYSBIE ~ Mayor of Abingdon, England
William Kysbie was twice mayor of the prosperous market town of Abingdon, Berkshire, England, 1581-2 and 1587-88. He was also a vintner of the Cosener's Inn. On top of all that, William was also Governor of Christ's Hospital, Abingdon (c.1579-88), and Master 1587-88.

William's most notable decree (in 1582) was that "Twentie powndes" be paid for every mayor "servinge one Hole yere" in office - from which he may have personally benefitted!

William Kysbie died in April 1588.

all souls Paul Kysbye/Gisby ~ Chancellor of Oxford University
Paul Kysbye died February 1594/5. Click HERE to see a transcript of the inventory of his worldly possessions.

In the early 1500's [Paul Gisby] was a Choirboy at Westminster and then went to Oxford, All Souls, where he took a BA by the time he was 16 years old, then went on to take more degrees and finally to become the head of the whole University, as Chancellor (which I think was denoted by the Roman title Procular in those times). I had traced reference to a stone memorial in All Souls College and wrote to the Bodleian Library seeking more information... His background was described as "Pleb" and his parents names were not given...
Incidentally the "G" sound in Latin, as in German, is pronounced (at Oxford, at least) with a soft "k" sounding inflexion, hence some notes using K or G to start the surname...

(info provided by Ronald Caseby)

Robert KISBEY ~ Burgess, Vicar and Hospital Governor

Robert Kisbey was born c.1559, son of William Kysbie and possibly brother of Paul Kysbye. Robert was a graduate of Oxford University and became one of the principle Burgesses of the market town of Abingdon, Berkshire, England. He also became Vicar of St Helen's Church and Governor of Christ's Hospital.

Robert left Abingdon with his family in 1624. He may have left for America, to evangelicise Indians in the Delaware area. He possibly died en route!

(Thankyou Roger Caseby for that last bit)

KISBY, Clement ~ long-serving Cathedral sexton

Clement Kisby (1619-1699) was the sexton of Peterborough Cathedral for 50 years until his death in April 1699. This will mean he was in charge of taking care of the Cathedral building and grounds, probably many other important duties too.

One of the unique features of the Cathedral is its western facade. According to the Cathedral records, Clement Kisby was "Buryed in the body of the church near the west door", surely an indication of his high regard!

KISBY, Samuel ~ 18th century entrepreneur

Samuel Kisby was probably a waggoner on the Great North Road in Cambridgeshire, England. This route was a major artery for trade and the waggoners were the C18th equivalent of truck-drivers. Samuel took advantage of the busy route, renting a plot and setting up (circa 1770) a wayside stopping point for waggoners to sleep and refresh themselves. It became known as "KISBY'S HUT". The business expanded and a public house of the same name existed on the spot for over 230 years!

Samuel married Sarah BULL. They had two daughters, Rebekah and Sara. Samuel's wife died in 1784 and Samuel died in 1797.

KISBEE, James ~ well-connected Gentleman

James Kisbee (1734-1819) of Barnwell, Northamptonshire was a servant of Mary the Duchess of Montagu who in her will left him 40 per year for life - this enabled him to become a Gentleman. James was a personal friend of the C18th black writer Ignatius Sancho (who was butler to the Duchess) and is mentioned in the book "Letters of Ignatius Sancho, an African" edited by Victor Caretta (1998).

(From info provided by Judith Kisbee)

KISBY, John ~ Mayor of Godmanchester

John Kisby was twice mayor of the town of Godmanchester in Huntingdonshire, England, in 1839 and 1841. He was also town bailiff in 1822, 1829 and 1833. By the 1850's John Kisby was an alderman.

John is believed to have been a wealthy farmer in the area, who was born in nearby Pidley circa 1784 and died at a ripe age in 1867. His father and son were also called John Kisby.

Interestingly, the mayor of Godmanchester a century later,in 1946, was called Arthur Kisby. No wonder there is a residential street there called Kisby Avenue!

KISBEE, Thomas ~ well-travelled Naval Officer
Inventor of the 'Kisbie ring' and 'breeches buoy'. Thomas was 1st Lieutenant on board the HMSV Driver, the first steam paddle sloop to circumnavigate the world. He departed in March 1842, travelling via South Africa and China to New Zealand, finally returning to Portsmouth (via Rio de Janeiro) in May 1847. Thomas had spent 1846-7 transporting Governor Grey around the North Island of New Zealand during the Maori Uprising. See also Kisbee Bay


KISBY, Henry ~ early Iowa settler
north america Early settler of Glenwood, Mills County, Iowa. Henry may have been a convert to the Church of Latter Day Saints(LDS) and on his way to the LDS in Utah, before stopping in Glenwood.
Kisby, Henry, farmer, P.O. Glenwood; was born March 12, 1818, in Lincolnshire, England. His early youth was passed in the common school of his native land, and in the occupation, incident to a farmer boy's life. He came to the United States in the year 1847, and first settled in the state of Wisconsin. In the spring of 1856 he located on his present farm of fifty acres, and although he is not a large land holder, what he has is free from debt... p. 680 Glenwood Township

To enter a country so wild, and engage in its settlement, implied not only a willing heart, but the ability to do and to dare.
From 'History of Mills County' (1881)

Much praise is deserved for the hard work of Cay Merriman and the Iowa Genweb Project - view their Mills County records.

KISBY, William H. ~ Very old Civil War veteran.

William H. Kisby died on 11 November 1935 in Texas, USA, aged "99", a remarkable age in those days!

William is recorded in Texas in 1861 aged "22", when he served as a cavalryman with the Confederates during the American Civil War. He married the following year. In October 1906 aged "68" he claimed an army veteran pension.

In the US Census returns William says he was born in England and immigrated to America in 1851. He was unable to read or write. Because of his age 'slippage' over the many decades of his life there is a strong likelihood he is William Henry Kisby of Norfolk, England, born in November 1839. William's family emigrated to America during the 1850's and it is very likely William went too. Why they became separated is open to conjecture. His elder brother Emanuel emigrated in 1858, settled in Michigan but fought for the Union Army in Arkansas. Who knows, maybe Emanuel and William faced one another on opposite sides in the southern states!

Kisbey, William Henry ~ Judge, Journalist and Author, Ireland
William Kisbey became a successful County Court Judge (1887-1909) in the Belfast area of Ireland. He authored several legal publications. He retired at the grand age of 82, a wealthy man.

William had been born and educated in Dublin, Ireland. He was a very distinguished scholar at Trinity College, winning prizes for English Verse. Following university William spent time as a journalist and became Editor of the Belfast Newsletter. As an active member of the Tory Party, William was chosen as election candidate to the British Parliament for the constituency of South Down in 1885. He failed to win the seat. William's political bias did not go unnoticed and his partisanship is mentioned in a debate in the British Parliament in 1886. Evidently it did his career no harm!!

William was also the father of Richard Claude Kisbey, a pioneering emigrant who founded the village of KISBEY in Canada.

(Thanks John and Della for the fascinating stories and the photo)

KISBEY, Richard Claude ~ Irish pioneer in Canada
richard kisbey Richard Claude Kisbey (1863-1941) emigrated from Ireland as a teenager to settle in Canada. The community that grew up around his plot was named after him, Kisbey, nowadays in Saskatchewan.

To be fair a mention should also be made of William Dennington Kisbey, Richard's brother who travelled with him. But Richard sacrificed a lot, giving up a place at Dublin University to head across the Atlantic. After buying a plot of land near Estevan and building a house and finding employment there, Richard made connections, marrying Logie Turriff the daughter of a member of the Canadian Parliament. Richard became Land Agent for the area and remained there for the rest of his life. Meanwhile his brother William had left Canada for the United States.

(Thanks John and Della for the additional info and the photo)

KISBY, Little Vera ~ Child Actor

Vera Fanchette Kisby (1883-1909) was a child actor, known as "Little Vera Kisby" or simply "Little Vera", who performed on the stage up-and-down Britain during the mid 1890's. Vera's parents were also actors. Her father Edwin "E.T." Kisby was later a Theatrical Manager. Little Vera continued to be mentioned in the theatrical press until the late 1890's, when presumably she was too old to be 'little' any longer. Vera seemed to be well received: aged 9 she "played intelligently" in the first London performance of The Diamond Gang; in 1895 she was "clever and interesting" in a performance in Edinburgh; aged 13 she "very clever in her impersonation" of a homeless waif at the Manchester Comedy Theatre; in 1897 she played a young sweetheart in a "pleasing manner" across the North of England.

Vera married in 1903 and unfortunately died only six years later.

Quotes from "The Era" newspaper, via the British Newspaper Archive

KISBY, Charles E Jnr ~ Centenarian

Charles E Kisby Jnr came from a long-lived family of Kisby's and died at the very grand age of 100. He had been a long standing resident of Ocean City, New Jersey, USA. According to newspaper reports of Charles E Kisby Jnr's 100th birthday, he was still in excellent health with a firm handshake and had still been driving his car in his late 90's. His home town proclaimed the 100th birthday, 2 June 2007, as "Charles E Kisby Jnr Day"! Charles E Kisby's father, Charles Ernest Kisby, emigrated from England to the USA in the early 1900's and died at the impressive age of 93.

(Info from 'Shore News Today' and 'The Press of Atlantic City')

    KISBY, Steve ~ Environmental Activist, Canada
Steve Kisby was a leader of the British Columbia Greens and founding Executive Secretary of the Green Party of Canada. Steve organised the national party's second conference in 1988 and has held also held the positions of International Chair and Membership Chair.

    KISBY, Tom ~ Top UK Golfer

13 year old golfer Tom Kisby, from Harlow, Essex ENGLAND was named 'British Junior Golf Tour Player of the Year 2008' and awarded 'Order of Merit' for the 2007/8 winter series. Apparently Tom has always come either first or second in his age group on every course he has played!

See press article published in the Harlow Star

Miss Wakefield KISBY, Natalie - Yorkshire Beauty Queen

In 2010 Natalie Kisby becomes the first notable female Kisby on this list!

In April of that year 17 year old Natalie (who hails from the Leeds area of Yorkshire, England) helped prove that Kisby's can have popularity, charm and good looks. She was chosen by a panel of judges and a public telephone vote as Miss Wakefield 2010. This meant she progressed to the semi-finals of the Miss England competition. Natalie subsequently came close (but not quite) to winning the Miss Leeds crown.


KEISBY, Hamlet of

A small settlement (with a Viking name!) in the rolling uplands of south Lincolnshire, England. Keisby is believed to be the origin of the English surname Kisby and therefore most of the world's Kisby's (certainly the native English speaking ones). The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 and was known at the time as Chisebi, or Kisebi.

These days Keisby consists of a small number of houses and farms. It also boasts a 'Keisby House' and a 'Keisby Cottage' ...and its own lake.

For more information and photographs see the KISBY SURNAME ORIGINS page.

KIESBY, Village of


Small village not far from the Danish border and overlooking the Baltic coast of Germany's northernmost state. Apparently the origin of the Danish surname Kiesby, Kiesbye or even Kisby!

(Thankyou Peter Kisby for mentioning this one)

KISBEE BAY, Preservation Bay, New Zealand

According to New Zealand historian John Hall-Jones the bay was surveyed by Captain John Lort Stokes in 1851. The Captain was known to name places after naval officers and nautical terms. He may have met Thomas Kisbee RN (see above) and possibly named the bay after him.

(Info provided by Judith Kisbee)

KISBEY, Village of
Named after pioneering Irish immigrant Richard Claude Kisbey. Apparently Kisbey made its mark as a watering point for locomotives on the Canadian Pacific Railroad. A couple of years after the railroad reached Kisbey, in 1907 it was officially promoted from a hamlet to a village. In 1908 the village lit its first street lamps, but didn't get street signs or house numbers till 1986! Water is still so plentiful the residents get a free supply. In 2007 Kisbey celebrated its centenary - Happy Birthday Kisbey!

Small though it may be, Kisbey has its very own museum, which is housed in the Percy School (named after Richard Kisbey's son). Kisbey also has its own webpages.


An unassuming cul-de-sac of 1950's/60's housing in the pretty town of Godmanchester near Huntingdon, England.

Not sure which Kisby gave the name to Kisby Avenue, possibly Arthur Kisby who was Godmanchester mayor in 1946. Kisby's have certainly been living in the area for over 200 years - John Kisby was mayor in 1841, Fred Kisby was the Godmanchester baker for several decades in the middle of the nineteenth century.

kisby's cottage Kisby's Cottage lies at one end of Kisby's Lane, which leads, neatly, to Kisby's Farm. The fictional rabbits of Richard Adams' Watership Down have made the surrounding area famous.
Kisby's Cottage is the reputedly the oldest house in the village of Ecchinswell and the C14th property of a Richard Kisby.

(Info provided by Jackie Sopp)

Long-serving Public House north of Papworth Everard, Cambridgeshire, England. It was founded as a wayside 'cafe' by Samuel Kisby circa 1770. Despite being renamed "The Horseshoe" during the C19th, it returned to its original name "Kisby's Hut" by popular local demand in about 1900!

In March 1913 a spark from the fireplace set light to the roof and the original brick and thatch house burnt down. But it was quickly rebuilt! And I can vouch that, on a cold December day, it could be a pleasant place to stop and have a good strong pint of beer...

Unfortunately in 2006, after 236 years in business, "Kisby's Hut" closed and reopened as an Indian Restaurant


Convenience Store, owned by a George Kisby since 1987, that lies on the County Line between the Washington and Clay Counties of Kansas, USA. Apparently also the venue for a display of local historical photographs.  In December 1999 a local man, Mitchell Hagen, bought a Kansas Lottery ticket from Kisby's Pit Stop and won $10,000.00!!

clifton, kansas
LOCATION: West Parallel Street, Clifton, KS

pot of kisby creme Fabrication de produit de parfumerie en France... unfortunately nobody knows where the name originated from. The current Laboratoires Kisby were created in the 1960's. However, an elderly cousin of mine, Gladys Kisby (b. 1928), could remember using a 'Kisby's Dry Shampoo' (Product of France) in the 1940's.

I have had no opportunity to sample the products of Laboratoires Kisby, so this does not constitute a recommendation... and I'm very bitter because they use the web address!  Sean Kisby




Derek Kisby died of cancer in the prime of his career as a successful Midget Grand Prix driver. Since 1977 Derek Kisby's family have presented the Derek Kisby Memorial Trophy to the winner of a Midget race at the Spedeworth Track, Great Yarmouth.

Pictured (right) is the 2001 trophy held by Derek's son Paul.
derek kisby trophy 2001

"KISBEE 50" Scooter
In early 2010 the vehicle manufacturer Peugeot are launching a new 50cc moped for the European market, called the 'Kisbee 50'. This is described as an efficient, 4-stroke engine moped and is designed for urban travel. It will be available in a variety of colours, including blue, black, white or orange. Price expected to be around 1200 euros.

I expect every Peugeot forecourt will soon have a queue of Kisbee's (and Kisby's) waiting to buy one! It will be fascinating to find out how Peugeot came up with the name!!


A piece of lifesaving equipment used by the Canadian Navy, apparently. David Mazur of the HMCS Halifax webpages says...

A kisbie ring in general is a piece of life saving equipment that almost all ships carry. We have 4 stations onboard fitted with smoke markers, kisbie rings and other equipment which lookouts throw overboard in the event of a man overboard. As a piece of rescue equipment, these are painted orange and have the ships name on them in black in accordance with Canadian and international law. When alongside in home or foreign port, we use our ceremonial kisbie rings... in the 4 stations for decoration. We also have the stand and kisbie ring at the brow where you come abord our ship as a welcome abord sign and identifier.

1notable /'nohtebl/ adj
1. worthy of note; remarkable
2. distinguished, prominent
2notable n
1. a prominent person
2. pl, often cap a group of people summoned esp formerly in France, when it was a monarchy, to act as a deliberate body.



last modified 13.15pm GMT 24 February 2014