Show ContentsFreebairn History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

It was among those Anglo-Saxon tribes that once ruled over Britain that the name Freebairn was formed. The name was derived from the baptismal name Frebern. Baptismal names began to appear as surnames relatively late in the growth of the naming tradition. This is a little surprising, given the popularity of biblical figures in the Christian countries of Europe. Nevertheless, surnames derived from baptismal names grew in popularity during the Middle Ages, and have become one of the foremost sources for surnames.

Early Origins of the Freebairn family

The surname Freebairn was first found in Berwickshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

Early History of the Freebairn family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Freebairn research. Another 71 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1150, and 1190 are included under the topic Early Freebairn History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Freebairn Spelling Variations

Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Freebairn include Freebairn, Freeborn, Freebourn, Freebourne, Freeborne, Freeburn, Frebern, Freebern and many more.

Early Notables of the Freebairn family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Freebairn family to Ireland

Some of the Freebairn family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 77 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Freebairn migration to the United States +

Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Freebairn were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Freebairn Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Freebairn who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1812

Australia Freebairn migration to Australia +

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

Freebairn Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • James Freebairn, aged 48, a weaver, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Macedon" [1]
  • Walter Freebairn, aged 25, a mason, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Nugget" [2]

New Zealand Freebairn 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:

Freebairn Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Freebairn, aged 24, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Wairoa" in 1877

Contemporary Notables of the name Freebairn (post 1700) +

  • Alfred Robert Freebairn (1794-1846), English engraver, apparently the son of Robert Freebairn, the landscape-painter
  • Robert Freebairn (1765-1808), Scottish landscape-painter, the last pupil of Richard Wilson [3]
  • John Freebairn, Australian politician, member of the South Australian House of Assembly (1962-1970)

  1. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The MACEDON 1849. Retrieved from
  2. South Australian Register Tuesday 4th July 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Nugget 1854. Retrieved
  3. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020 on Facebook