Show ContentsBalcomb History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Balcomb is a name whose ancestors lived among the Picts, a tribe in ancient Scotland. The Balcomb family lived in Balcomie, in the parish of Crail, in the county of Fifeshire. [1]

Early Origins of the Balcomb family

The surname Balcomb was first found in Fife, where one of the first records of the family was "Robert de Balcomie who was constable of Crail in 1297 is probably the Robert de Balcomi who served as juror on an inquest made at Perth in 1305. John de Balcolmy was bailie of Crail in 1359, and c. 1380 mention is made of the lands of Richard de Balcolmi in the same town. Thomas de Balcolmi appears in record in 1429, James Balcolmy was married in 1492." [1]

In England, the family is thought to have originated at Balcombe (Baegloc's hollow), in Sussex. [2] [3] In this case, the place name dates back to the late 11th century when it was known as Balecumba and possible meant "valley of a man called Bealda." [4]

Early feudal rolls provided the king of the time a method of cataloguing holdings for taxation, but today they provide a glimpse into the wide surname spellings in use at that time. John de Balecomb was listed in Sussex in 1327 as was Thomas Bakombe in the Subsidy Rolls for 1525. [5]

Early History of the Balcomb family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Balcomb research. Another 62 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1297, 1359, 1380 and 1672 are included under the topic Early Balcomb History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Balcomb Spelling Variations

The appearance of the printing press and the first dictionaries in the last few hundred years did much to standardize spelling. Prior to that time scribes spelled according to sound, a practice that resulted in many spelling variations. Balcomb has been spelled Balcom, Balcome, Balcomb, Balcomm, Balcombe and others.

Early Notables of the Balcomb family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Balcomb Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Balcomb migration to the United States +

The expense of the crossing to the North American colonies seemed small beside the difficulties of remaining in Scotland. It was a long and hard trip, but at its end lay the reward of freedom. Some Scots remained faithful to England and called themselves United Empire Loyalists, while others fought in the American War of Independence. Much of this lost Scottish heritage has been recovered in the last century through Clan societies and other patriotic Scottish organizations. A search of immigration and passenger lists revealed many important, early immigrants to North America bearing the name of Balcomb:

Balcomb Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Chas. M. Balcomb, aged 60, who settled in America, in 1918
  • Charles Balcomb, aged 60, who landed in America, in 1919
  • Charles M. Balcomb, aged 60, who landed in America, in 1919
  • Charles Balcomb, aged 62, who immigrated to the United States from Eastport, Maine, in 1920
  • Frederick Balcomb, aged 31, who immigrated to the United States, in 1922

Canada Balcomb migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Balcomb Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Clifford Balcomb, aged 50, who immigrated to Winnipeg, Canada, in 1916

The Balcomb Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Dum spiro spero
Motto Translation: While I have breath I hope.

  1. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  3. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  5. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X) on Facebook