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The Alcantara surname is derived from the place name Alcantara on the Tagus river in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain. Alcantara is derived from the Arabic word "cantara" meaning "bridge" and the definite article "al." The bridge in question was built about the year 105 by the Romans, and the village was named for the bridge by the Moors. The bridge of Alcantara is still standing today, having been restored in the late 19th century.

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The surname Alcantara was first found in Castile. According to scholars, the surname descends from a Castilian knight who served King Fernando II of Leon, in the first Reconquest of the village of Alcantara, in 1166. In rewarding the knight, the King also had him take the surname Alcantara and to bear the arms of this village. The village was re-taken by the Moors, and then recovered by Alonso of Leon in 1214, who then established the Order of Alcantara, a religious and military order for defense against the Moors.

Spelling variations of this family name include: Alcantara, Al Cantara, Alcántara and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Alcantara research. Another 366 words (26 lines of text) covering the years 1499, 1562, 1669, and 1698 are included under the topic Early Alcantara History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 72 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Alcantara Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Alcantara Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Diego De Alcantara, who landed in America in 1816
  • Juan Fcci Alcantara, aged 22, landed in New Orleans, La in 1840

Alcantara Settlers in United States in the 20th Century


  • Jose Gonzalez Alcantara, aged 28, who emigrated to America from Seville, in 1906
  • John Alcantara, aged 49, who settled in America from Gibraltar, Gibraltar, in 1910
  • Ana Alcantara, aged 48, who settled in America from Gibraltar, Gibraltar, in 1910
  • Dolores Alcantara, aged 38, who landed in America from Gibraltar, Gibraltar, in 1910
  • John E. Alcantara, aged 24, who emigrated to the United States from Havana, Cuba, in 1918


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  • Francisco de Alcantara, Spanish sculptor
  • Daniel Bautista Alcántara (b. 1972), Dominican Major League Baseball player
  • Israel Alcantara (b. 1971), Dominican Major League Baseball player
  • Dr. Adriana Alcantara, Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin
  • Francisco de Paula Linares Alcántara (1825-1878), Venezuelan politician, President of Venezuela (1877-1878)
  • Francisco de Paula Alcantara (1785-1848), Venezuelan General who took part in the War of Independence


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  1. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  2. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  4. García Carraffa, Alberto and Arturo. Diccionario Heráldico y Genealógico de Apellidos Españoles y Americanos 88 Volumes. Madrid: A. Marzo. Print.
  5. Atienza, Julio De Atienza. Español: Diccionario Heraldico De Apellidos Españoles Y De Titulos Nobiliarios. Madrid: Aguilar, 1959. Print.
  6. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  7. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  8. de Cadenas, Vicente Y Viicent. Heraldic Patronimica Española Y Sus Patronimicos Compuestos. Madrid: Hidalguía, 1976. Print.
  9. Maduell, Charles R. Compiler Index of Spanish Citizens Entering the Port of New Orleans Between January 1840 and December 1865. New Orleans: The Compiler, 1966. Print.
  10. Annuaire Général Héraldique Universel. Paris: Institut Héraldique, 1901. Print.
  11. ...

The Alcantara Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Alcantara 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 3 September 2015 at 12:59.

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