The ancient German region called the Rhineland
is where Borbeke was first used as a hereditary surname. While Germans initially used single names, they eventually adopted surnames to alleviate confusion with others of the same name. As the population grew and people traveled more, the confusion rose - and so did surname use. Many German surnames come from the work done by the original bearer of the surname. Borbeke is an occupational
name for a person who was a baker of bread. The surname Borbeke was originally derived from the Old German word brot which referred to bread. Occupational
names that were derived from the common trades of the medieval era transcended European cultural and linguistic boundaries.
Early Origins of the Borbeke family
The surname Borbeke was first found in the Rhineland
, where the name could be considered to have made a major contribution to the feudal
society which became the backbone of the early development of Europe. The name became prominent in local
affairs and branched into many houses which played important roles in the savage tribal and national conflicts, each group seeking power and status in an ever-changing territorial profile. The name derives from the profession of baker, whose main product was bread: "Brotbaecker" took on a variety of spellings, often dropping the "t." In the northeastern regions the name added a "-ke" and became Brobeke.
Early History of the Borbeke family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Borbeke research.Another 121 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Borbeke History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Borbeke Spelling Variations
One can encounter great variation in the spelling of surnames: in early times, spelling in general, and thus the spelling of names was not yet standardized; and later, spellings would change with branching and movement of families. Variations of the name Borbeke include Brobeck, Brobache, Brobacker, Brobakke, Borbeke, Brobecker, Brobeck, Brodbeck and many more.
Early Notables of the Borbeke family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Borbeke Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Borbeke family to the New World and Oceana
Hundreds of thousands of Europeans, including many Rhinelanders, made the voyage to North America between the 17th and 20th centuries. It was an escape from religious persecution and poverty and also an opportunity for people to start over and own their own land. Most landed at Ellis Island
, off New York before moving on to the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas, Illinois, and California. Some also landed in Canada and settled in Ontario, while others headed west to the prairie provinces. A study of passenger and immigration lists has shown a number of people bearing the name of Borbeke, or one of its variants, reaching North America shores very early: Heinrich Brobeck, who came to Philadelphia in 1749.