Origin of the Name Smalley
family history was found in the allfamilycrests.com archives. Smalley is a locality name meaning 'of Smalley', from a chapelry found in the parish of Morley, County Derbyshire. This name is usually of English descent and is found in many ancient manuscripts in that country. Examples of such are a James Smalley, of Liverpool, who was recorded in the 'Wills at Chester', England, in the year 1682 and an Edward Smalley, of Blackburn, who was also recorded in the year 1689 in this ancient document.
Names were recorded in these ancient documents to make it easier for their overlords to collect taxes and to keep records of the population at any given time. When the overlords acquired land by either force or gifts from their rulers, they created charters of ownership for themselves and their vassals. It was by creating, maintaining and updating these reference books that they were able to maintain their authority and enforce laws.
In Ireland this name and its variants were introduced into Ulster Province by settlers who arrived from England and Scotland, especially during the seventeenth century. It was the 'Plantations of Ireland' in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries that marked the end of Gaelic supremacy in Ireland. While the influx of settlers in the wake of the earlier Anglo-Norman invasion of the twelfth century resulted in a full integration into Irish society of the new arrivals, the same never occurred with the Ulster Planters who maintained their own distinct identity.
Smalley may also be an occasional variant of the Gaelic name O'Smollain, which is more often anglicized as Smollan, Smullen and Smallen.
The Smalley coat of arms came into existence centuries ago. The process of creating coats of arms (also often called family crests) began in the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this. The new art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own coat of arms, including all Smalley descendants.