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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014

Where did the German Kirchner family come from? What is the German Kirchner family crest and coat of arms? When did the Kirchner family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Kirchner family history?

The German state of Silesia is the glorious birthplace of the distinguished surname Kirchner. In the medieval era, Germany was fragmented and inhabited by numerous Barbarian tribes, who fought amongst themselves for control of the land. The ancient dukedom of Silesia derived its name from the Germanic tribe named the Silingers, who occupied Silesia between the 2nd and the 6th centuries.

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Kirchner, Circhner, Kirchener, Kerchner, Cerchner, Kirckner, Kerkner, Kerckner, Kercher, Kirchen, Kircher and many more.

First found in Silesia, where the family became noted for its many branches within the region, many houses acquiring a status and influence which rivaled that of the landed aristocracy. In their later history some branches were elevated to the ranks of nobility as they distinguished themselves through their contributions to the social, political, and economic developments of the nation. The mediaeval form of the name, "Kirchherr," meant literally "priest" or "servant of the church." The word "Kirchner" is still used in this way today in certain parts of Thuringia.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kirchner research. Another 343 words(24 lines of text) covering the years 1707, 1592, 1657, 1731, 1601 and 1680 are included under the topic Early Kirchner History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 87 words(6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kirchner Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Kirchner Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Georg Kirchner, who came to New York State in 1710
  • Johannes Kirchner arrived in Philadelphia in 1731
  • Andreas Kirchner, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1749
  • Joh Georg Kirchner, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1751
  • Agnes Kirchner, who landed in America in 1752


Kirchner Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Christopher Kirchner, who arrived in North America in 1832-1849
  • Christian Kirchner, who landed in Galveston, Tex in 1846
  • Carl Joseph Kirchner, who arrived in Ohio in 1857
  • Friedrich Franz Kirchner, who arrived in America in 1859
  • Adam Kirchner, who arrived in St Clair County, Illinois in 1859


Kirchner Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • August R Kirchner, who landed in Alabama in 1913

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  • Leon Kirchner (b. 1919), American composer and pianist. He studied with Stravinsky, Schoenberg, Toch, and Klemperer, and later taught at Harvard
  • Michael Kirchner (b. 1957), American former professional wrestler, known as Corporal Kirchner in the WWF
  • Mark Kirchner (b. 1970), German former biathlete, first German to become Olympic champion in 1992
  • Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880-1938), sculptor, draughtsman, and painter and co-founder of the artist's group "Bruecke"
  • Nestor Kirchner (1950-2010), former Argentine President (2003-2007)


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  • The Ancestors and Descendants of Herman Buechele and Mary Rehklau and Michael Kirchner by Ruth Buchele Doerr.
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  1. Göbel, Otto. Niederdeutsche Familiennamen der Gegenwart Wolfshagen-Schäbentz. Franz: Westphal, 1936. Print.
  2. Strassburger, Ralph B. Pennsylvania German Pioneers The Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia 3 Volumes. Baltimore: Picton Press, 1992. Print. (ISBN 978-0929539980).
  3. Fogleman, Aaron Spencer. Hopeful Journeys German Immigration, Settlement, and Political Culture in Colonial America 1717-1775. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1986. Print. (ISBN 978-0812215489).
  4. Nied, Edmund. Fraenkische Familiennamen urkundlich gesammelt und sprachlich gedeutet. Heidelberg: C. Winter, 1933. Print.
  5. Gottschald, Max. Deutsche Namenkunde unsere Familiennamen nach ihrer Entstehung und Bedeutung. München: J.F. Lehmanns Verlag, 1932. Print.
  6. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  7. Strassburger, Ralph B. German Pioneers The Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia 3 Volumes. Baltimore: Picton Press, 1992. Print. (ISBN 978-0929539980).
  8. Tobler-Meyer, Wilhelm. Familiennamen der Ostschweiz. Zürich: 1894. Print.
  9. Brechenmacher, Josef Karlmann. Deutches Namenbuch. Stuttgart: Verlag von Adolf Bonz & Comp, 1928. Print.
  10. Zoder, Rudolf. Familiennamen in Ostfalen. Hildesheim: Geog Olms Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Kirchner Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Kirchner Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 28 July 2014 at 10:34.

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