Ferbirn History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Ferbirn comes from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It was a name for a person with attractive, youthful looks, or someone who was noted as having been a beautiful child. The surname Ferbirn is derived from the Old English words fair, which means lovely, and bearn, which means child.
However, the name Ferbirn may also be a local surname applied to someone from the settlement of Fairbourne in Kent or Fairburn in the West Riding of Yorkshire. In this case, Ferbirn belongs to the large category of Anglo-Saxon habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.
Early Origins of the Ferbirn family
The surname Ferbirn was first found in North Yorkshire at Fairburn, a small village and civil parish in the Selby district that dates back to before the Domesday Book when it was listed as Fareburne c. 1030. A few years later in 1086, the Domesday Book lists the placename as Fareburne  and literally meant "stream where ferns grow," having derived from the Old English fearn + burna. 
Some of the first records of the family were Augustin and Robert Fayr(e)barn(e) who were listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Yorkshire in 1297. 
By the time of the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379, spellings were quite varied: Johannes Fayrebame; Willelmus Fairebarn; and Robertus Fayrebarne were all listed there at that time as holding lands. 
In Scotland, the name literally means "beautiful child"  and the first record of the family was "Stephen Fairburn, burgess of Berwick on Tweed, [who] held the hostelry of the abbot and convent of Arbroath in Dundee c. 1327." 
Early History of the Ferbirn family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ferbirn research. Another 166 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1297, 1327, 1644, 1680, 1742, 1685, 1686, 1688, 1690, 1692 and 1693 are included under the topic Early Ferbirn History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Ferbirn Spelling Variations
Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Ferbirn has undergone many spelling variations, including Fairbairn, Fairbairns, Fairbarn, Fairborn, Fairborne and many more.
Early Notables of the Ferbirn family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include Sir Andrew Fairbairn; and Sir Palmes Fairborne (1644-1680), an English soldier and Governor of Tangier. He was "the son of Colonel Stafford Fairborne of Newark, and probably related to the Yorkshire family of that name." 
Sir Stafford Fairborne (d. 1742), was Admiral of the fleet and the eldest son of Sir Palmes Fairborne. "In June 1685 Stafford was lieutenant of the Bonadventure at Tangiers, and during the illness of his captain commanded the ship in a successful encounter with some Sallee vessels at Mamora. On 12 July 1686 he was...
Migration of the Ferbirn family
To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Ferbirn were among those contributors: Robert Fairbarn landed in 1763. William Fairbarn joined many of his fellow Fairbarns when he purchased land in Philadelphia in 1835.
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: Nec cede arduis
Motto Translation: Not high yield