Harbor History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Anglo-Saxons of Britain first developed the name Harbor. It was a name given to someone who was a person who ran a lodging house. This surname is a metonymic form of the surname Harberer, and is derived from the Old English word herebeorg, which means shelter or lodging. [1]

Early Origins of the Harbor family

The surname Harbor was first found in Cambridgeshire where the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Geoffrey Herbour and John Herbour as holding lands there at that time. [2]

Two early London records show William le Herber in the Rotuli Litterarum Clausarum in Turri Londinesi; and Richard le Hareber in the Munimenta Gildhallæ Londoniensis. [1]

Early History of the Harbor family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harbor research. Another 124 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1596, 1679, 1676, 1785, 1635, 1692, 1689, 1690, 1572 and 1575 are included under the topic Early Harbor History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Harbor Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Harbor have been found, including Arbour, Arbor, Harbord, Harbard, Hardboard, Harboard, Harber, Harbot and many more.

Early Notables of the Harbor family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include William Harbord (1635-1692), of Grafton Park, an English diplomat and politician, Privy Counsellor and Paymaster of the Forces in Ireland in 1689, Vice-Treasurer of Ireland in 1690. He was the first English ambassador to Turkey...
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harbor Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Harbor family

Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Among the first immigrants of the name Harbor, or a variant listed above to cross the Atlantic and come to North America were: Michael Arbor who settled in New York State in 1775; and Joseph Arbour arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1786. Frank Harber settled in Virginia in 1647.


Contemporary Notables of the name Harbor (post 1700) +

  • William H. Harbor, American politician, Speaker of the Iowa State House of Representatives, 1969-72, 1980 [3]


The Harbor 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: Equanimiter
Motto Translation: With equanimity.


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 29) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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