Breakinridge History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The ancestors of the name Breakinridge come from the ancient Scottish tribe known as the Dalriadans. They lived along the rugged west coast of Scotland and on the Hebrides islands and used the name to indicate a person 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, Breakinridge 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 Breakinridge family
The surname Breakinridge 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 Breakinridge 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 Breakinridge family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Breakinridge research. Another 108 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1454, 1454, 1748 and 1816 are included under the topic Early Breakinridge History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Breakinridge Spelling Variations
Many spelling variations of Breakinridge have been recorded over the years, including These are the result of the medieval practice of spelling according to sound and repeated translation between Gaelic and English. Brackenridge, Brachenridge, Brakenbury, Brackenrige, Brachenrige, Brecenrigg, Brecenrig, Breckinridge, Breckinrige, Breckinrigg, Breconrig, Breconrigg, Breckenrig, Breckenrigg, Braikinrigg, Braikinrig, Braikinridge and many more.
Early Notables of the Breakinridge family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Breakinridge Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Breakinridge family to Ireland
Some of the Breakinridge 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 Breakinridge family
Settlers from Scotland put down roots in communities all along the east coast of North America. Some moved north from the American colonies to Canada as United Empire Loyalists during the American War of Independence. As Clan societies and highland games started in North America in the 20th century many Scots rediscovered parts of their heritage. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Breakinridge were among those contributors: Alexander Brackenridge who settled in Virginia in 1740; Hugh and John arrived in Philadelphia in 1846; Andrew Brackinridge settled in Philadelphia in 1840.
Related Stories +
The Breakinridge 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: 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)