Brackenrige History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The ancestors of the first family to use the name Brackenrige lived among the Dalriadan people of ancient Scotland. The name Brackenrige was given to someone who lived in the places named Brackenrig, in Lanarkshire and Ayrshire.  This place name comes from the Northern Old English words, bracken and rigg (ridge). So, Brackenrige literally means "dweller by the bracken-covered bridge."  Bracken is a large fern which typically grows in moorland and is found on all continents except Antarctica and in all environments except deserts.
Early Origins of the Brackenrige family
The surname Brackenrige was first found in Lanarkshire, and Ayrshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times. In 1454, two records were found of the family: the yard of John of Bracanyyggis in Glasgow; and Johannes Brakanryg was sergeant of the upper baronie of Renffrew. A few years later, Robart Brakenrig witnessed a letter of reversion in 1504. 
While the Brackenrige family typically claim Scotland as their homeland, as one would expect northern England is also a place the family calls home. Cumbria (Cumberland) just south of the Scottish border included a listing of Nicholas de Bracanrig in the Subsidy Rolls for 1332. "There are five places named Brackenrigg in Cumberland and one in Lanarkshire [Scotland]. " 
Early History of the Brackenrige family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Brackenrige research. Another 108 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1454, 1748 and 1816 are included under the topic Early Brackenrige History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Brackenrige Spelling Variations
Spelling variations are a very common occurrence in records of early Scottish names. They result from the repeated and inaccurate translations that many names went through in the course of various English occupations of Scotland. Brackenrige has been spelled Brackenridge, Brachenridge, Brakenbury, Brackenrige, Brachenrige, Brecenrigg, Brecenrig, Breckinridge, Breckinrige, Breckinrigg, Breconrig, Breconrigg, Breckenrig, Breckenrigg, Braikinrigg, Braikinrig, Braikinridge and many more.
Early Notables of the Brackenrige family
More information is included under the topic Early Brackenrige Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Brackenrige family to Ireland
Some of the Brackenrige family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 38 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Brackenrige family
These settlers arrived in North America at a time when the east was burgeoning with prosperous colonies and the expanses of the west were just being opened up. The American War of Independence was also imminent. Some Scots stayed to fight for a new country, while others who remained loyal went north as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of them went on to rediscover their heritage in the 20th century through highland games and other patriotic Scottish events. The Brackenrige were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Alexander Brackenridge who settled in Virginia in 1740; Hugh and John arrived in Philadelphia in 1846; Andrew Brackinridge settled in Philadelphia in 1840.
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: Virtute et industria
Motto Translation: By valour and industry.
- 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)
- Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)