Bright History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The name Bright is part of the ancient legacy of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is a product of when the family lived in the village of Bright, in Cheshire. The name could have also been a nickname for someone who was bright or fair, or it could have been from the Old English word beorht which means bright. "Beorht was the name of a Northum­brian ealdorman who was slain by the Picts, A.D. 699. " [1]

The Anglo Saxon word beort, means brilliant, illustrious. [2]

Early Origins of the Bright family

The surname Bright was first found in Cheshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

Important Dates for the Bright family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bright research. Another 104 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1882, 1551, 1615, 1588, 1619, 1688, 1619, 1643, 1654 and 1655 are included under the topic Early Bright History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bright Spelling Variations

The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Bright has been spelled many different ways, including Bright, Brite and others.

Early Notables of the Bright family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Timothie Bright, M.D. (1551?-1615), an early British physician and clergyman, the inventor of modern shorthand. He is thought to have been born near Sheffield. "The art of writing by signs originated among the Greeks. Few specimens of Greek shorthand are extant, and little is known on the subject. From the Greeks the knowledge of the art passed to the Romans, among whom it was introduced by Cicero, who devised many characters, which were termed notæ Tironianæ, from Cicero's freedman Tiro, a great proficient in the art. In the darkness which overwhelmed the world...
Another 145 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bright Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bright migration to the United States

Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Brights to arrive in North America:

Bright Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Francis Bright who settled in Salem, Massachusetts in 1629
  • Francis Bright, who arrived in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1629 [3]
  • Henry Bright, who settled in New England in 1630
  • Henry Bright, who arrived in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1632 [3]
  • Henry, Bright Jr., who landed in Watertown, Massachusetts in 1642 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Bright Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Michael Bright, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1726 [3]
  • William Bright, who settled in New England in 1747
Bright Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Edward Bright, who arrived in New York in 1822 [3]
  • Robert Bright, who arrived in Charleston, South Carolina in 1829 [3]
  • Andrew Jackson Bright, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1895 [3]

Bright migration to Canada

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Bright Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Moses Bright U.E. who arrived at Port Roseway [Shelburne], Nova Scotia on October 26, 1783 was passenger number 178 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on September 28, 1783 at Staten Island, New York [4]
  • Mrs. Elizabeth Bright U.E. who arrived at Port Roseway [Shelburne], Nova Scotia on October 26, 1783 was passenger number 297 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on September 28, 1783 at Staten Island, New York [4]

Bright migration to Australia

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

Bright Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Bright, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 17, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [5]
  • Mr. Benjamin Bright, (b. 1798), aged 34 born in St. Clements, Cornwall, UK convicted in Cornwall on 24th March 1832, sentenced for life for housebreaking, transported aboard the ship "Circassian" in 1832 to Van Diemen's Land, Tasmania, Australia [6]
  • Mr. Benjamin Bright (b. 1799), aged 34, Cornish settler convicted in Cornwall, UK on 24th March 1832, sentenced for life for housebreaking with violence, transported aboard the ship "Circassian" on 4th October 1832 to Van Diemen's Land, Tasmania, Australia [7]
  • John Edward Bright, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Navarino" in 1837 [8]
  • William Bright, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Thomas Lowry" in 1848 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Bright 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:

Bright Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Dr. Bright, Australian settler travelling from Sydney aboard the ship "David" arriving in New Zealand in 1839 [10]
  • Mrs. Sarah Bright, (b. 1829), aged 34, British needlewoman travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 16th February 1864 [10]
  • Mr. William Bright, (b. 1848), aged 15, British farm labourer travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 16th February 1864 [10]
  • Mr. Richard J. Bright, (b. 1850), aged 13, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 16th February 1864 [10]
  • Miss Grace Bright, (b. 1856), aged 7, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 16th February 1864 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Bright (post 1700)

  • Richard J Bright (1937-2006), American actor, best known for his role as Al Neri in the Godfather films
  • Ronald David "Ronnie" Bright (1938-2015), American R&B and doo wop singer
  • Susannah "Susie" Bright (b. 1958), American writer, speaker, teacher, audio-show host, and performer
  • Johnny D. Bright (1930-1983), American-born, Canadian CFL football player, inductee into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame and the College Football Hall of Fame
  • Ronnell Bright (b. 1930), American jazz pianist
  • Jesse David Bright (1812-1875), American politician, 9th Lieutenant Governor of Indiana
  • William Bright (1928-2006), American Linguist, Professor of Linguistics at UCLA (1959-1988)
  • Mark K. Bright, American fighter pilot and flying ace in the U.S. Navy, during World War II, credited with 9 aerial victories
  • Bobby Neal Bright Sr. (b. 1952), American Democrat politician, Mayor of Montgomery, Alabama, 1999-2008; U.S. Representative from Alabama 2nd District, 2009-11 [11]
  • Arthur W. Bright, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Tennessee, 1948; Democratic Candidate for U.S. Representative from Tennessee 1st District, 1954, 1958 [11]
  • ... (Another 47 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Bright family

HMS Royal Oak
  • Herbert Bright (d. 1939), British Marine with the Royal Marine aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [12]
Pan Am Flight 103 (Lockerbie)
  • Nicholas Bright (1956-1988), American Businessman from Brookline, Massachusetts, America, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died [13]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Arthur John Bright, aged 41, English Quartermaster from Woolston, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking escaping on life boat 10 [14]

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Citations

  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  5. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Albion voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1823 with 200 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/albion/1823
  6. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 30th May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/tasmanian_convicts_cornish.pdf
  7. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 30th May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_australia_convicts.pdf
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) NAVARINO 1837. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1837Navarino.htm
  9. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) THOMAS LOWRY 1848. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1848ThomasLowry.htm
  10. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  11. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 11) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  12. ^ 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
  13. ^ Pan Am Flight 103's victims: A list of those killed 25 years ago | syracuse.com. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.syracuse.com/news/index.ssf/2013/12/pan_am_flight_103s_victims_a_list_of_those_killed_25_years_ago.html
  14. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html
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