This is a very difficult surname to research. It has been found to be well recorded from the 17th century, but evidence before that is lacking as to its origin. What can be said quite definitely is that a number of nameholders have Huguenot (French Protestant) blood in their veins, whilst the remainder owe something to Scotland and something to the Ancient British, or Olde English. In all cases the name is almost certainly locational deriving from a place such as the hamlet of Callands in Peebleshire, Scotland, or from the district known as Calandre in France, or from some now lost place in England.Certainly the English and Scottish versions have the same meaning which is essentially "the lands in the valley" from the pre 9th century word "creole" meaning valley. There are at least five thousand lost villages in Britain which have given rise to surnames, and the fact the versions of the name include Calland, Kellond, Callant, etc. are themselves a confirmation of lost village status. The first Huguenot recording is that of Jacob Cailland, at the French Church, Threadneedle Street, London, on February 2nd 1732, however this is at least one hundred years after "Kelland" is recorded in London. The name as Kelland and Calland or Callant seem to have run side by side, Garrett Callant being recorded at St Dunstans Church, Stepney in 1630, whilst Thomas Kelland (see below) is much the same date.Other recordings include John Calland of Edinburgh in 1738 and Robart Kelland, a christening witness at the Providence Chapel, St Mary Le Bone, London, on October 25th 1788. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Kelland, which was dated May 19th 1614, married Elizabeth Goose, at St Giles Church, Cripplegate, London, during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1587 - 1625. 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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