Brooks History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the Brooks family brought their name to England in the wave of migration after the Norman Conquest of 1066. They lived in Essex. The name, however, derives from the family's former residence in Broc, in the area of Anjou, France. [1]

Early Origins of the Brooks family

The surname Brooks was first found in Essex. Medieval forms of the name are Ate-Broc, Atte-Broc, Attenbroke and was more often than not pluralized to Brooks and Brookes in modern times. [2]

Originally from the Norman "Broc," meaning "a stream" or "at the brook," one of the first references was of Robert le Broc and Ranyllph le Broc, two knights having estates in Essex in the year 1119. A few years later, Eustace delbroc was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Northumberland in 1130 and Rand de Broc was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Hampshire in 1157.

Early in the 13th century, William de la Broke was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls of Surrey in 1208 and Emma de Brokes was listed in the same source but in Suffolk in 1220. [3] The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Alice de la Broke and Laurence del Broc. [4]

Early History of the Brooks family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Brooks research. Another 204 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1214, 1592, 1660, 1512, 1560, 1532, 1560, 1569, 1563, 1545, 1660, 1614, 1643, 1664, 1602, 1655, 1652, 1608, 1680, 1685, 1646, 1648, 1632, 1676, 1601, 1683, 1685 and are included under the topic Early Brooks History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Brooks Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Brooks were recorded, including Brook, Brooke, Brookes, Brooks, Brecks, Broocks and others.

Early Notables of the Brooks family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Richard Brooke (died 1569), Sheriff of Cheshire in 1563, he bought the manor of Norton, Cheshire from Henry VIII in 1545 following the dissolution of the monasteries; John Brooke, (died 1660) 1st Baron Cobham, an English politician who sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1614 and 1643; Sir Henry Brooke, 1st Baronet (died 1664), an English soldier and politician; Robert Brooke, Sr...
Another 74 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Brooks Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Brooks family to Ireland

Some of the Brooks family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 124 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Brooks migration to the United States +

The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Brooks arrived in North America very early:

Brooks Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Cutberd Brooks, who arrived in Virginia in 1622 [5]
  • Sibile Brooks, who landed in Virginia in 1623 [5]
  • Henry Brooks of Boston, Massachusetts, who settled in 1630
  • Gilbert Brooks, who landed in New England in 1633 [5]
  • William Brooks, who landed in New England in 1633 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Brooks Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Robin Brooks, who arrived in Virginia in 1705 [5]
  • Fra Brooks, who arrived in Virginia in 1705 [5]
  • Margaret Brooks, who arrived in Virginia in 1717 [5]
  • Benja Brooks, who landed in Virginia in 1720 [5]
  • Fran Brooks, who landed in Georgia in 1738 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Brooks Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Peter Brooks, who arrived in New York, NY in 1812 [5]
  • Thomas, Brooks Jr., aged 19, who arrived in New York in 1812 [5]
  • Samuel Brooks, who landed in New York in 1822 [5]
  • Robert Brooks, who arrived in New York in 1822 [5]
  • James Brooks, who arrived in New York in 1822 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Brooks Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Sam D Brooks, who arrived in Arkansas in 1903 [5]

Canada Brooks migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Brooks Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • John Brooks, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Robert Brooks, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
  • John Brooks, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Mary Brooks, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Chamr Brooks, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Brooks migration to Australia +

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

Brooks Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Richard Brooks, English convict who was convicted in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Baring" in April 1815, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Mr. Thomas Brooks, English convict who was convicted in London, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Baring" in December 1818, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Joseph Brooks, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Australia [7]
  • Alexander Brooks, English convict from Somerset, who was transported aboard the "Arab" on July 3, 1822, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [8]
  • Richard Brooks, English convict from Surrey, who was transported aboard the "Arab" on February 22, 1834, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Brooks 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:

Brooks Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Brooks, who landed in Cloudy Bay, New Zealand in 1839
  • Stephen Brooks, aged 39, a labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgeway" in 1840
  • Sarah Brooks, aged 37, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgeway" in 1840
  • Caroline Brooks, aged 16, a sempstress, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgeway" in 1840
  • Maryanne Brooks, aged 10, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgeway" in 1840
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Brooks (post 1700) +

  • Michael Jamal Brooks (1983-2020), American talk show host, writer, and political commentator
  • Timothy Paul "Tim" Brooks (1947-2020), better known by his ring name "Killer" Tim Brooks, an American professional wrestler
  • Rayshard Brooks (d. 2020), African American man shot and killed by an Atlanta Police Department officer who was investigating a complaint about a man asleep in a car
  • Mr. Edward Hale Brooks (1893-1978), born in Concord, New Hampshire, American Lieutenant General who served in World War I and World War II, awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for heroism in World War I [10]
  • Edward A. Brooks (1942-2019), American politician and farmer, Member of the Wisconsin State Assembly (2009-2019)
  • Conrad Brooks (1931-2017), born Conrad Biedrzycki, an American actor, known for his roles in many Ed Wood films including Plan 9 from Outer Space, Glen or Glenda, and Jail Bait
  • Lonnie Brooks (1933-2017), born Lee Baker Jr., an American blues singer and guitarist
  • Clarence Brooks (1951-2016), American assistant defensive line coach of the Baltimore Ravens from 2005 to 2016
  • Michael Anthony Brooks (1958-2016), American professional basketball player
  • Martin E. Brooks (1925-2015), born Martin Baum, an American character actor, best known for playing scientist Dr. Rudy Wells in the television series The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman
  • ... (Another 271 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Air New Zealand Flight 901
  • Mr. Gordon Barrett Brooks (1959-1979), New Zealander Flight Engineer, from Auckland, New Zealand working aboard the Air New Zealand sightseeing Flight 901 when it flew into Mount Erebus; he died in the crash [11]
  • Ms. Geraldine Kay Brooks (d. 1979), New Zealander passenger, from Timaru, Canterbury, New Zealand aboard the Air New Zealand Flight 901 for an Antarctic sightseeing flight when it flew into Mount Erebus; she died in the crash [11]
Empress of Ireland
  • Miss Dorothy Caroline Brooks (1906-1914), Canadian Third Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [12]
  • Mrs. Henrietta Brooks (1880-1914), née Westwood Canadian Third Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who survived the sinking on the Empress of Ireland [12]
  • Mr. Frank Percy Brooks (1884-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who survived the sinking on the Empress of Ireland [12]
  • Mr. Harry Brooks (1886-1914), Canadian Third Class Passenger from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [12]
Flight TWA 800
  • Mrs. Ruth D. Brooks (1917-1996), from Edgartown, Massachusetts, USA, American passenger flying aboard flight TWA 800 from J.F.K. Airport, New York to Leonardo da Vinci Airport, Rome when the plane crashed after takeoff ; she died in the crash [13]
  • Mr. Edwin B. Brooks (1915-1996), from Edgartown, Massachusetts, USA, American passenger flying aboard flight TWA 800 from J.F.K. Airport, New York to Leonardo da Vinci Airport, Rome when the plane crashed after takeoff ; he died in the crash [13]
Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. Louis Frank  Brooks (1844-1917), Canadian resident from Tufts Cove, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [14]
HMAS Sydney II
HMS Dorsetshire
  • Joseph Brooks, British Midshipman aboard the HMS Dorsetshire when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he survived the sinking [16]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. Terrence L Brooks (b. 1904), English Marine serving for the Royal Marine from Halstead, Kent, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [17]
  • Mr. Jack Brooks (b. 1901), English Stoker 1st Class serving for the Royal Navy from Urmston, Manchester, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [17]
  • Mr. Gordon B Brooks (b. 1920), English Stoker 1st Class serving for the Royal Navy from Ledbury, Hampshire, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [17]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. Terence Charles Frederick Brooks, British Sergeant Turret, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [18]
  • Mr. Frederick Brooks, British Marine, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died in the sinking [18]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. S G Brooks, British Boy, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [19]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. George Brooks, English 3rd Class Waiter from Southport, Lancashire, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [20]
  • Mr. James "Jay Ham" Brooks, American 1st Class Passenger from Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking by escaping in a collapsible [20]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. J. Brooks (d. 1912), aged 25, English Trimmer from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [21]
USS Arizona
  • Mr. Robert Neal Brooks, American Ensign from Washington, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [22]


The Brooks 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: Perseverando
Motto Translation: By persevering.


Suggested Readings for the name Brooks +

  • 72 "Brooks Family History" by Bernice Brooks Casey, "The Brooks of Virginia" by Bruce Montgomery Edwards.

  1. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ 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)
  6. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 16th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/baring
  7. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Asia 1 voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1820 with 192 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1820
  8. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Arab voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1822 with 155 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/arab/1822
  9. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Arab voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1834 with 230 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/arab/1834
  10. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62310, 31 October 2019 | London Gazette, The Gazette, June 2018, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/62310/supplement/B1
  11. ^ Mount Erebus, Memorial, Roll of Remembrance (Retrieved 2018, February 21st). Retrieved from http://www.erebus.co.nz/memorialandawards/rollofremembrance.aspx
  12. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 16) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  13. ^ The Washington Post Passenger List TWA Flight 800. (Retrieved 2018, February 15th). Retrieved from https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/twa800/list01.htm
  14. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  15. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  16. ^ Force Z Survivors HMS Dorsetshire Crew List, (Retrieved 2018, February 13th), https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listdorsetshirecrew.html
  17. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  18. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  19. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  20. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  21. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html
  22. ^ Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from http://pearl-harbor.com/arizona/casualtylist.html


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