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An excerpt from archives copyright © 2000 - 2016

Origins Available: Italian, Portuguese, Spanish

From the ancient and beautiful Italian island of Sicily emerged a variety of distinguished names, including the notable surname Cabrera. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adopt a second name to identify themselves as populations grew and travel became more frequent. The process of adopting fixed hereditary surnames was not complete until the modern era, but the use of hereditary family names in Italy began in the 10th and 11th centuries. Italian hereditary surnames were developed according to fairly general principles and they were characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. Although the most traditional type of family name found in the region of Sicily is the patronymic surname, which is derived from the father's given name, local surnames are also found. Local names, which are the least frequent of the major types of surnames found in Italy, are derived from a place-name where the original bearer once resided or held land. Often Italian local surnames bore the prefix "di," which signifies emigration from one place to another, and does not necessarily denote nobility.


The surname Cabrera was first found in the Sicilian city of Aragona. In 1040, Ponzo Cabrera was Viscount of Cabrera, Girona, and Anger.

Italian surnames come in far more variations than the names of most other nationalities. Regional traditions and dialects are a decisive factor in this characteristi c. For example, northern names tend to end in "o", while southern in "i". Also important, but not unique to Italy, was the fact that before dictionaries and the printing press most scribes simply spelled words according to their sounds. The predictable result was an enormous number of spelling variations. The recorded spellings of Cabrera include Cabral, Cabras, Cabrera, Cabrini, Cabrone, Cabrino, Cabrotto, Cabrotti, Cabrilli, Cabroni, Cabrillo, Cabrollo and many more.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cabrera research. Another 246 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1368, 1510, 1740, and 1761 are included under the topic Early Cabrera History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


Prominent among bearers of this surname in early times was Bernardo Cabrera in 1368, who was the head of a very prestigious nobility; Francesco Cabrini, a nobleman and landowner born around 1510 in Brescia; Giovanni Cabrini was a famous painter in 1510 in Bergamo...

Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cabrera Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Cabrera arrived in North America very early:

Cabrera Settlers in United States in the 16th Century

  • Luis de Cabrera to America in 1512
  • Alonso Cabrera, who voyaged to Santo Domingo in 1536, he subsequently journeyed to Buenos Aires to join Pedro de Mendoza, and from there to Asuncion, Paraguay
  • Pedro de Cabrera to Florida in 1538

Cabrera Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Gregoria Cabrera, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1802
  • Petronila Clara Cabrera, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1810
  • Luis De Cabrera, who arrived in America in 1812
  • Jerónimo Luis de Cabrera of Seville, who voyaged first to Peru and later to Argentina, where he founded the city of Cordoba
  • Juan de Cabrera, aide-de-camp to the Viceroy of Peru Núñez de Vela
  • ...

  • Waldo Cabrera, American politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly 6th District, 2008
  • Cesar Benito Cabrera, American politician, U.S. Ambassador to Mauritius, 2006-Seychelles, 2006-Comoros, 2006-
  • Cesar Cabrera, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 2004
  • Angelina Cabrera, American Democrat politician, Member of Democratic National Committee from New York; Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1972
  • Rosa María Cabrera, American professor emeritus
  • Nestor L Cabrera, American fashion designer
  • Nelson David Cabrera (b. 1983), Paraguayan football defender
  • Wílmer Cabrera Linares (b. 1967), retired Colombian football defender and current assistant coach
  • Diego Aroldo Cabrera Flores (b. 1982), Bolivian football striker
  • Matías Cabrera (b. 1986), Uruguayan footballer
  • ...

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    Other References

    1. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
    2. Di Crollalanza, Goffredo. Enciclopedia araldico cavalleresca Prontuario nobiliare. Pisa: Presso La Direzione Del Giorale Araldica , 1878. Print.
    3. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
    4. Glazier, Ira A. and P. Williams Filby Edition. Italians to America. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Print.
    5. Guelfi Camajani, Piero. Dizionario Araldico 1940 Reprint Arnoaldo Forni. Milan: 1978. Print.
    6. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
    7. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
    8. Rolland, and H.V. Rolland. Illustrations to the Armorial Général by J.B. Rietstap. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today, 1967. Print. (ISBN 0-0900455-209).
    9. Fucilla, Josheph G. Our Italian Surnames. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0806311878).
    10. Di Crollalanza, G.B. Dizionario Storico-Blasonico Delle Famiglie Nobili e Notabili Italiane 3 volumes. Pisa. Print.
    11. ...

    The Cabrera Family Crest was acquired from the archives. The Cabrera 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 11 November 2015 at 10:46.

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