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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016


The surname Brinegar, is likely of patronymic origin, that is, it belongs to the category of surnames derived from the first name of the father of the initial bearer. In this instance, the name indicates "son of Brüning," a variant of Bruno. The personal name Bruno is a pet form of names such as Brunolf, Brunwardt and Brunheri, all derived from the Old High German word "brunja" meaning brown. The name probably would have been initially given as a nickname to one with brown hair or a dark complexion. The name may also have been derived from the Middle High German "brunne" meaning "breastplate." Bruningsen is also a place name in Westfalia.

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Bruening, Breuninger, Breuninge, Breuning, Brüning, Brünings, Brauening, Brunig, Bruenink, Brunke (Friesland), Bruhnke, Brunken, Brünicke, Brüntjen, Brünjes and many more.

First found in Westfalia. The earliest record dates back to 1206, when Bruning von Staufen, possibly the founder of the village of Breuningsweiler, was mentioned in the "Wurttembergisches Urbunderbuch II." In 1284 Chunrat Bruninch was living in Augsburg and in 1351 Cuonrad Brunig was a curator at Baden-Baden. An unknown Breininger was recorded in Rottweil in 1357. Wolfgang Breuningk was living in Grafental in 1503, and Christoph Breuning in Tubingen in 1539.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Brinegar research. Another 239 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1757, 1812, 1514, 1687, 1660, 1727, 1702, 1774 and 1827 are included under the topic Early Brinegar History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 161 words (12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Brinegar Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Brinegar Settlers in United States in the 20th Century


  • E. P. Brinegar, aged 40, who settled in America from San Francisco, in 1909
  • Nellette Brinegar, aged 40, who settled in San Francisco, in 1913

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  • Claude Stout Brinegar (1926-2009), the third United States Secretary of Transportation (1973 to 1975)
  • Paul Brinegar (1917-1995), American character actor who appeared in over 100 films between 1946 and 1994
  • Ivan H. Brinegar, American politician, Mayor of Bedford, Indiana, 1950-56
  • Claude Stout Brinegar (1926-2009), American politician, Secretary of Transportation, 1973-75


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  1. Steed, Henry Wickham . The Hapsburg Monarchy. London: Constable and Company, 1919. Print.
  2. Tarneller, Josef. Zur Namenkunde Tirolen Familiennamen. Bozen: Buchhandlung, 1923. Print.
  3. Kapff, Rudolf. Schwäbische Geschlechtsnamen. Stuttgart: Verlag Silberburg, 1927. Print.
  4. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  5. Rolland, and H.V. Rolland. Illustrations to the Armorial general by J. B. Rietstap 6 volumes in 3. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1976. Print.
  6. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  7. Bahlow, Hans (Edda Gentry trns). Dictionary of German Names . Madison, Wisconsin: Max Kade Institute, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-924119-35-7).
  8. Hildenbrand, A.M. Wappenfibel. Handbuch der Heraldik. Neustadt an der Aisch: 1970. Print.
  9. Göbel, Otto. Niederdeutsche Familiennamen der Gegenwart Wolfshagen-Schäbentz. Franz: Westphal, 1936. Print.
  10. Bahlow, Hans. Abhandlungen zur Namenforschung und Buchgeschichte. 1980. Print. (ISBN 978-3768690522).
  11. ...

The Brinegar Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Brinegar Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 17 December 2015 at 12:13.

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