Fairbrother History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Fairbrother is a name of Anglo-Saxon origin. It was a name given to a person who was referred to as the fair brother. The surname was originally derived from the relationship between two brothers and referred to the brother of a fair person or the better-looking of a pair of brothers. The surname Fairbrother comes from an ancient Anglo-Saxon word faerbeorht which described a brother-in-law to a famous knight or nobleman. In Scotland, "father-brother" is a phrase to designate an uncle. [1]

Early Origins of the Fairbrother family

The surname Fairbrother was first found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat from early times.

Early History of the Fairbrother family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fairbrother research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1320, 1524 and 1834 are included under the topic Early Fairbrother History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Fairbrother Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Fairbrother were recorded, including Fairbrother, Farbrother, Farebrother, Fairbrodder, Farbrodder and many more.

Early Notables of the Fairbrother family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Fairbrother Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Fairbrother migration to the United States +

To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Fairbrother family emigrate to North America:

Fairbrother Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Nath. Fairbrother, who settled in Virginia in 1638
Fairbrother Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Thomas Fairbrother, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1746
Fairbrother Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Henry Fairbrother, who settled in Baltimore in 1830
  • Betsey Fairbrother, who settled in Baltimore in 1830
  • Eliza Elvara Fairbrother, who arrived in New York in 1837

Canada Fairbrother migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Fairbrother Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Edward Fairbrother, who settled in Halifax, Nova Scotia sometime between 1852 and 1871

Australia Fairbrother migration to Australia +

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

Fairbrother Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mrs. Mary Fairbrother, (b. 1787), aged 39, Irish house servant who was convicted in Wicklow, Ireland for 14 years for uttering forged notes, transported aboard the "Brothers" on 3rd October 1826, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, listed as having 2 children [2]
  • Mr. Luke Fairbrother, (b. 1804), aged 27, English sawyer who was convicted in Chester, Cheshire, England for 14 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Exmouth" on 3rd March 1831, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, he died in 1888 [3]

New Zealand Fairbrother 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:

Fairbrother Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Richard Fairbrother, aged 23, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Oriental" in 1840
  • Sophia Eliza Fairbrother, aged 22, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Oriental" in 1840
  • Mr. Richard Fairbrother, (b. 1816), aged 23, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Oriental" arriving in Port Nicholson, Wellington, New Zealand on 31st January 1840 [4]
  • Mrs. Fairbrother, (b. 1817), aged 22, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Oriental" arriving in Port Nicholson, Wellington, New Zealand on 31st January 1840 [4]
  • Richard W. Fairbrother, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ann Wilson" in 1857
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Fairbrother (post 1700) +

  • David Howard Fairbrother, American associate professor of Chemistry at John Hopkins University, Baltimore
  • O. R. Fairbrother, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for Missouri State House of Representatives from Clark County, 1944 [5]
  • James S. Fairbrother, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Queens County 2nd District, 1894-95 [5]
  • Helen E. Fairbrother, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Rhode Island, 1960 [5]
  • George Washington Fairbrother, American politician, Member of Nebraska territorial House of Representatives, 1866 [5]
  • Bill Fairbrother, American Republican politician, Presidential Elector for Texas, 2012 [5]
  • Ian Fairbrother (b. 1966), retired English football player and manager who played from 1984 to 1997
  • Keith Fairbrother (b. 1944), English former Chairman and rugby union player of Coventry R.F.C., member of the England National Team (1969-1971)
  • Barrie Edward Fairbrother (b. 1950), English footballer
  • Nan Fairbrother (1913-1971), English writer and lecturer on landscape and land use
  • ... (Another 11 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. W. H.  Fairbrother (1882-1917), English Donkeyman aboard the SS Curaca from Liverpool, England, United Kingdom who died in the explosion [6]
HMS Royal Oak
  • James William Fairbrother (1922-1939), British Boy 1st Class with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [7]


  1. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 3rd November 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/brothers
  3. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 25th May 2022). https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/exmouth
  4. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  5. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, March 16) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  6. ^ 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
  7. ^ 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


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