This interesting surname of English origin with variant spellings O Cridigan, O Crigan, O Crigane, O Criane, Creddon, Creeghan, Cregan, Creggan, Crehan, Crean, Creane, Cree, etc. is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic O Croidheagain "descendant of Croidheagan", a personal name from a diminutive of "croidhe" meaning "heart", used as a term of endearment. The surname may be a locational name from a place called Cree in Ayrshire. The surname dates back to the late 16th Century, (see below). Church records include one Mabe Cree who married Robert Merryt on March 1603, at St. Katherine by the Tower, London. Issobell, daughter of Peter and Janet Cree, was christened on April 12th 1618, in Edinburgh, and William, son of Thomas Cree, was christened on June 28th 1621, in Doddington, Lincolnshire. Reber-t. Cree aged 28), a famine emigrant, sailed from Glasgow aboard the "Vermont", bound for new York on October 19th 1846. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Raph Cree, witness at the christening of his son Rahell, which was dated 1590, St. katherine by the Tower, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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