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About the study
My Cude one-name study is still in its very early stages having only been started in 2014 with Guild registration in 2015. The name comes from my wife's family: its rarity intrigued me and as I researched her Cude ancestors I was sucked in. I will add more as my research develops.
Today, the most common spelling of our name is Cudd and Cude. However, there has been many different iterations down the centuries including:
1) Cud, Cudd, Cudde, Cude
2) Cod, Codd, Code, Coode
3) Coad, Coade, Cowd
4) Coude, Good, Cody
Old English records provide substantial circumstantial evidence that the counties of Devon, Somerset, and Gloucestershire in Southwest England represent the English Homeland of the Cud(d)(e) Family. On the American side, ancestors have bee traced from Virginia through North Carolina, Tennessee and beyond, but we have a brick wall that has prevented us from identifying the original Cud(d)(e) Immigrant to America.
Historical occurrences of the name
Modern History in Europe
We start finding a recorded history of Cud(d)(e) around 1500 + AD. For example:
1) Using the English BMD records, family researchers have found significant clusters of Cud(d)(e) records in Southwest England, specifically, Gloucestershire, Somerset, and Devon between 1550-1750.
2) In the 1841 UK Census, the Cud(d)(e) concentration has shifted slightly southward toward Somerset and Devon.
3) Modern surname analysis in 2016 shows that 70%+ of Cud(d)(e) records are still located in Southwest England in a corridor along the M5 from Exeter to Bristol and on to Birmingham.
4) We also see a significant number of Cud(d)(e) s in southern Wales.
5) From these written records, we can suggest a vague surname evolution from Cudde to Cud & Cudd to Cudd & Cude.
TODAY, four hundred years later, a significant number of modern English (Cud(d)(e) s can be found within a 50-mile radius circle that encompasses Gloucestershire, Somerset, and Devon.
Modern History in America
At this time, Cude Family researchers have NOT confirmed our Original Immigrant to America. Nevertheless, we have several possibilities.
1) The first documented Cude in America is Allin de Cude, living in New Kent, Virginia in 1639. He may have arrived in Jamestown, VA, but his port of departure is unknown.
2) We also have a John Cudd sailing from Bristol (Gloucestershire) between 1654 and 1663 arriving Nevis Island in the West Indies. This was not an unusual first stop for early colonists because sailing ships were driven by the trade winds. From the West Indies, they would make their way to mainland North America. John was an indentured servant.
3) We also find a Mary Cudd and a John Cudd arriving in Virginia in the late 1600s and early 1700s.
4) Finally, we have a John Cudd in the Quaker records in Henrico County, Charles City, VA in 1740. Several Cud/Cudd/Cude families in Gloucestershire were Quaker.
It is likely that some of these early Cudd/Cudes arrived as indentured servants to some of the large Virginia plantation owners. All these Cudd/Cudes disappear from the historical record. However, John and Mary were the most common forenames among the Cud(d)(e) family in Gloucestershire during this time. This combined with a documented Cudd departure from Bristol and Quaker connections on both sides of the Atlantic suggests a strong Gloucestershire connection.
The American Cude Patriarch
The confirmed patriarch of the American Cude family is Timothy Cude. Timothy can be found in Virginia land documents as early as 1749. His father is believed to be a John Cude who died young about 1742+/- and his mother was Ann (Nancy) King. There is good evidence supporting this parentage but no firm proof. Timothy Cude was probably born around 1730-40. In early American records, the name is routinely spelled Cud, Cude, Cood, and Coode. Timothy Cude settled in what would become Randolph County, North Carolina by the late 1750’s. He married and had four sons. All known American Cude surname lines begin with Timothy and these four sons, William, John, James, and Timothy.