Family History and Genealogy Resources by Surname
Kemp Surname Origin
In old English, a soldier, one who engaged in single combat. The name Kemp is derived from the Saxon word to kemp, or combat, which in Norfolk is retained to this day; a foot-ball match being called a camping or kemping; and thus in Saxon a Kemper signifies a combatant, a champion, a man-at-arms. In some parts of Scotland the striving of reapers in the harvest-field is still called kemping.
Source: An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names With an Essay on their Derivation and Import; Arthur, William, M.A.; New York, NY: Sheldon, Blake, Bleeker & CO., 1857.
Kemp Surname Meaning and Family Facts
There is more to Kemp family history than the origin of your surname:
A Kemp Family History Thought:
'I saw behind me those who had gone, and before me, those who were to come. I looked back and
saw my father, and his father, and all our fathers, and in front, to see my son, and his son, and the
sons upon sons beyond.
And their eyes were my eyes.
As I felt, so they had felt, and were to feel, as then, so now, as tomorrow and forever.
Then I was not afraid, for I was in a long line that had no beginning, and no end, and the hand of his father grasped my father's hand, and his hand was in mine, and my unborn son took my right hand, and all, up and down the line that stretched from Time That Was, to Time That Is, and Is Not Yet, raised their hands to show the link, and we found that we were one...' --Richard Llewellyn in How Green Was My Valley