Barber History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The chronicles of Scottish history reveal that the first people to use the name Barber were the Strathclyde- Britons. The Barber surname is derived from the Anglo-Norman French word "barbier," in turn from the Late Latin "barbarius," or "barba, " meaning "beard." As such, the medieval barber who not only cut hair and gave shaves, but also practiced surgery and pulled teeth. [1]

Early Origins of the Barber family

The surname Barber was first found in Northumberland, and Cumberland. Some of the first records of the family were Gilbert le Barber or Barbour and Michael le Barber who were Scots prisoners taken at Dunbar Castle in 1296. [1]

The year 1296 is important to note as this was the year that King Edward I of England invaded Scotland. Those on the borders were deeply affected and those who refused to pay homage to the king were often thrown in jail.

However not all of the family failed to pay homage, as Aleyn le Barbur of the county of Arne did render homage to the invading king. Later in 1305, John Barbitonsor rendered the accounts for the farm of Mountros and a few years later, William Barbitonsor had confirmation of a charter of lands in 1317.

The famed Robert Bruce granted to Ade Barbitonsor a toft in Moffat with two bovates of land adjoining (presumably the same year) and in 1328 there is entry of a payment to Andrew Barber. [1]

John Barbour (1316?-1395), was the earliest Scottish poet on record and one of the best of the ancient Scottish poets, a contemporary of Chaucer. He was also Archdeacon of Aberdeen. "The date of his birth is conjectural, but his death, on 13 March 1395, is proved by an entry in the obit book of the cathedral, the cessation in that year of a pension conferred on him by Robert II, and other documentary evidence. In 1357 he appears as Archdeacon of Aberdeen in a safe-conduct by Edward III to him and three scholars going to study at Oxford." [2]

Early History of the Barber family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Barber research. Another 180 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1410, 1603, 1329, 1336, 1383, 1391, 1410, 1451, 1463, 1934, 1316, 1395, 1690, 1757, 1690, 1714, 1738, 1811, 1757, 1761, 1763 and are included under the topic Early Barber History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Barber Spelling Variations

In the era before dictionaries, there were no rules governing the spelling or translation of names or any other words. Consequently, there are an enormous number of spelling variations in Medieval Scottish names. Barber has appeared as Barbour, Barber, Barberton and others.

Early Notables of the Barber family (pre 1700)

Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Barber Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Barber World Ranking

In the United States, the name Barber is the 335th most popular surname with an estimated 79,584 people with that name. [3] However, in Canada, the name Barber is ranked the 695th most popular surname with an estimated 7,567 people with that name. [4] And in Australia, the name Barber is the 321st popular surname with an estimated 11,014 people with that name. [5] New Zealand ranks Barber as 515th with 1,338 people. [6] The United Kingdom ranks Barber as 249th with 23,946 people. [7]

Ireland Migration of the Barber family to Ireland

Some of the Barber family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 197 words (14 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Barber migration to the United States +

The freedom, opportunity, and land of the North American colonies beckoned. There, Scots found a place where they were generally free from persecution and where they could go on to become important players in the birth of new nations. Some fought in the American War of Independence, while others went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of these Scottish settlers have been able to recover their lost national heritage in the last century through highland games and Clan societies in North America. Among them:

Barber Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Henry Barber, who landed in Virginia in 1620 [8]
  • Ann Barber, who landed in Virginia in 1622 [8]
  • Henry Barber, who settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Susan Barber, who landed in Virginia in 1623 [8]
  • George Barber who arrived in Virginia in 1635, aboard the "Transport," and was later a freeman of Dedham, MA
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Barber Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Riehd Barber, who arrived in Virginia in 1702 [8]
  • Tho Barber, who landed in Virginia in 1703 [8]
  • William Barber, who landed in Virginia in 1703 [8]
  • Anne Barber, who landed in Virginia in 1704 [8]
  • Anna Barber, aged 9, who arrived in New York in 1710 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Barber Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Barber, who landed in America in 1812 [8]
  • Pablo Barber, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1820 [8]
  • William A Barber, who landed in New York in 1822 [8]
  • Eliza Barber, aged 22, who arrived in America in 1822 [8]
  • Joseph Barber, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1849 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Barber Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. James Barber, (b. 1868), aged 32, Cornish labourer, from St. Ives, Cornwall travelling aboard the ship "Campania" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 7th July 1900 en route to Braddock, Pennsylvania, USA [9]
  • Mr. William Barber, (b. 1847), aged 55, Cornish miner, from Camborne, Cornwall travelling aboard the ship "Celtic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 29th June 1902 en route to Nevada City, California, USA [9]
  • Miss Mary J Barber, (b. 1882), aged 21, Cornish settler, from St. Ives, Cornwall travelling aboard the ship "Campania" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 15th August 1903 en route to Calumet, Michigan, USA [9]
  • Miss Johanna Barber, (b. 1860), aged 43, Cornish settler, from St. Ives, Cornwall travelling aboard the ship "Campania" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 15th August 1903 en route to Calumet, Michigan, USA [9]
  • Miss Mabel Barber, (b. 1880), aged 24, Cornish settler, from Looe, Cornwall travelling aboard the ship "Oceanic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 30th March 1904 en route to New York, USA [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Barber migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Barber Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • William Barber, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Clemt Barber, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Francis Barber, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Jane Barber, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Joseph Barber, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Barber Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Richard Barber, who was the owner of a fishing room at Old Perlican and at Grates Cove, Newfoundland in 1800
  • Robert Barber from Galloway, Scotland, who was a bookkeeper of St. John's, Newfoundland in 1804. "Barber's Island" and "Barbour's Head" are places in Newfoundland [10]
  • Thomas Barber, who arrived in Canada in 1815
  • Thomas Barber, aged 35, a tailor, who arrived in Quebec aboard the ship "Atlas" in 1815
  • Janet Barber, aged 38, who arrived in Quebec aboard the ship "Atlas" in 1815
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Barber migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Barber Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Barber, (b. 1803), aged 23, English boatman who was convicted in Yarmouth, Norfolk, England for 14 years for burglary, transported aboard the "Chapman" on 12th April 1826, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land), he died in 1870 [11]
  • Mr. Samuel Barber, British convict who was convicted in Chester, Cheshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Bussorah Merchant" on 1st October 1829, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [12]
  • Miss Ann Barber, English convict who was convicted in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Buffalo" on 4th May 1833, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [13]
  • James Barber, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Buckinghamshire" in 1839 [14]
  • Elizabeth Barber, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Buckinghamshire" in 1839 [14]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Barber migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Barber Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Richard Barber, who landed in Tamaki, Auckland, New Zealand in 1840
  • Thomas Barber, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Miss Elizabeth Barber, Australian settler travelling from Sydney aboard the ship "Diana" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 11th July 1840 [15]
  • Mrs. Barber, Australian settler travelling from Sydney aboard the ship "Deborah" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand in 1842 [15]
  • James Barber, who landed in Tamaki, Auckland, New Zealand in 1843
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

West Indies Barber migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [16]
Barber Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Mr. William Barber, (b. 1613), aged 22, British settler traveling aboard the ship "Matthew" arriving in St Christopher (Saint Kitts) in 1635 [17]

Contemporary Notables of the name Barber (post 1700) +

  • Benjamin R. Barber (1939-2017), American political theorist and author, best known for his 1995 bestseller, Jihad vs. McWorld
  • Steven William "Shawn" Barber (b. 1975), former American NFL football linebacker who played from 1998 to 2007
  • Shawnacy Campbell "Shawn" Barber (1994-2015), Canadian two-time gold pole vaulter, world title holder at the 2015 World Championships in Athletics and at the 2015 Pan American Games
  • Miller Barber (1931-2013), American PGA professional golfer who played in the 1960s and 1970s
  • Brigadier-General Henry Anson Barber (1896-1956), American Deputy to G-3, Headquarters, Army Ground Forces (1948-1949) [18]
  • Brigadier-General Edward Barber (1900-1965), American Deputy Commandant of the Air War College (1948-1949) [19]
  • Wilfred C. Barber, American journalist who won the 1936 Pulitzer Prize for Correspondence
  • Andrea Barber (b. 1976), American actor
  • Samuel Barber (1910-1981), American composer
  • Red Barber (1908-1992), American journalist
  • ... (Another 12 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Arrow Air Flight 1285
  • Mr. Daniel Mark Barber (b. 1961), American Specialist 4th Class from Flagstaff, Arizona, USA who died in the crash [20]
Empress of Ireland
  • Mr. John Barber, British Fireman from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [21]
Hillcrest Coal Mine
  • Mr. James Barber (1874-1914), Canadian Miner from New Annan, Nova Scotia, Canada who worked in the Hillcrest Coal Mine, Alberta, Canada and died in the mine collapse [22]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Frank Barber (1916-1939), born in Romford, Essex, England, British Stoker 1st Class with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [23]
  • Albert Stanley Barber (1921-1939), born in Custom House, London, England, British Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [23]
RMS Lusitania
  • Miss Constance Barber, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [24]
RMS Titanic
  • Miss Ellen "Nellie" Barber, aged 26, English First Class passenger from London, England who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking escaping in life boat 6 [25]


The Barber 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: Nihilo nisi cruce
Motto Translation: Nothing, but the cross.


Suggested Readings for the name Barber +

  • Ancestors and Descendants of Maj. Hezekiah Barber by Irene Marshall Barber.
  • Barber Grandparen.
  • : 125 Kings, 143 Generations by Bernard and Gertrude Barber Bernard.

  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, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  3. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  4. ^ https://forebears.io/surnames/
  5. ^ https://forebears.io/australia/surnames
  6. ^ https://forebears.io/new-zealand/surnames
  7. ^ https://www.surnamemap.eu/unitedkingdom/surnames_ranking.php?p=10
  8. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  9. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retreived 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_ellis_island_1892_on.pdf
  10. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  11. ^ Convict Records of Australia (Retreived 28th January 2021, retreived from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/chapman)
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 10th November 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/bussorah-merchant
  13. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 3rd November 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/buffalo
  14. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BUCKINGHAMSHIRE 1839. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1839Buckinghamshire.htm
  15. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  16. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  17. ^ Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's (Retrieved October 4th 2021, retrieved from https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/shiplist.htm)
  18. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2011, October 6) Henry Barber. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Barber/Henry_Anson_Jr./USA.html
  19. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2011, October 6) Edward Barber. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Barber/Edward/USA.html
  20. ^ American War Memorials - Flight 1285. (Retrieved 2016, August 24) . Retrieved from http://www.uswarmemorials.org/html/monument_details.php?SiteID=317&MemID=550
  21. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  22. ^ List Of Miners - Hillcrest Mine Disaster Data. (Retrieved 2014, June 24) . Retrieved from http://www.hillcrestminedisaster.com/data/index.php?title=List_Of_Miners
  23. ^ Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/ship68.html
  24. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  25. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html


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