Barre History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

Among the all the peoples of ancient Scotland, the first to use the name Barre were the Strathclyde- Britons. It was a name for someone who lived in Ayrshire, where the family was found since the early Middle Ages. It is generally thought to have been a habitational name, taken on from any of various place names in southwestern Scotland, in particular in Ayrshire and Renfrewshire. These place names derive from the Gaelic word barr, meaning "height," or "hill."

Early Origins of the Barre family

The surname Barre was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire. "The surname is most frequently found at the present day in the district around Glasgow, and is a common surname in the Kilbarchan Commissariot Record. Atkyn de Barr was bailie of Ayr c. 1340. John Bar or de Barre was burgess of Edinburgh in 1423." [1]

However, some of the family were first found further south at Tollerton in Nottinghamshire. "This place, which takes its name from Torlaston, one of its possessors before the Conquest, in the reign of Stephen became the manor of Radulphus Barre, with whose descendants it still remains." [2]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Gunilda de la Barre in Hertfordshire and Philip de le Barre in Huntingdonshire. [3]

Richard Barre ( fl. 1170-1202), was an English ecclesiastic and judge who acted as the envoy of Henry II to the papal court, both shortly before and immediately after the murder of Thomas Becket. [4]

Important Dates for the Barre family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Barre research. Another 124 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1590, 1551, 1554, 1565, 1600, 1612, 1686, 1600 and are included under the topic Early Barre History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Barre Spelling Variations

The variation in the spelling of Medieval names is a result of the lack of spelling rules in the English language prior to the last few hundred years. Before that time, scribes spelled according to sound, often varying the spelling of name within a single document. Barre has appeared as Barr, Barre and others.

Early Notables of the Barre family (pre 1700)

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

Migration of the Barre family to Ireland

Some of the Barre family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 60 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Barre migration to the United States

As the persecution of Clan families continued, they sailed for North America in increasing numbers. In most cases, they found the freedom and opportunity they sought. Land was often available and the American War of Independence allowed Scots an opportunity to solidify their independence from the English crown. These settlers and their ancestors went on to play essential roles in the forging of the nations of the United States and Canada. Among them:

Barre Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • James Barre who arrived in New York in 1680
  • James Barre, aged 26, who arrived in New York in 1680 [5]
Barre Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Henry Barre, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1718 [5]
  • Jacob Barre, Sr. and Jacob Barre, Jr., both of whom arrived in Pennsylvania in 1718
  • Jacob Barre Jr., who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1718 [5]
  • John George Barre who arrived in South Carolina in 1735
  • John George Barre, who landed in South Carolina in 1735 [5]
Barre Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • J. P. Barre, age 28, who arrived in Charleston, South Carolina in 1821
  • L. P. Barre, age 27, who settled in New York City in 1821
  • S Barre, who arrived in Arkansas in 1892 [5]
Barre Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Peter Barre who was recorded as having arrived in Arkansas in 1901
  • Peter Barre, who landed in Arkansas in 1901 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Barre (post 1700)

  • William de la Barre (1849-1936), Austrian-born, American civil engineer who developed a new process for milling wheat into flour using energy-saving steel rollers at the Washburn-Crosby Mills (now known as General Mills)
  • Raoul Weston La Barre (1911-1996), American anthropologist, best known for his work in ethnobotany
  • Raoul Barré (1874-1932), Canadian-born, American cartoonist and animator of the silent film era
  • Abdirahman Jama Barre (1937-2017), Somali politician, Minister of Finance of the Somali Democratic Republic (1987-1991)
  • William Joseph Barre (1830-1867), Irish architect, best known for his many buildings in Belfast in a Gothic Revival style
  • Mohamed Siad Barre (1919-1995), President of the Somali Democratic Republic from 1969-91
  • Martin Lancelot Barre (b. 1946), English rock musician, best known for his work with the rock band Jethro Tull
  • Pierre-Yves Barré (1749-1832), French vaudevillist and song-writer
  • Jean Benoît Vincent Barré (1732-1824), French architect, one of the creators of the 'Louis XVI style' of architecture
  • Jean Auguste Barre (1811-1896), French sculptor and medalist
  • ... (Another 9 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

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  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. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  5. ^ 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)
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