Link History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Austria is the homeland of the Link family. Originally, the Austrian people were known only by a single name. The process by which hereditary surnames were adopted in Austria is extremely interesting. The process took place during the Middle Ages when people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Often they adopted names that were derived from nicknames.
Early Origins of the Link family
The surname Link was first found in Austria, where the name became noted for its many branches within the region, each house acquiring a status and influence which was envied and enrolled by the princes of the region. Chronicles mention one Francze Lynke (Lynkehand) of Liegnitz in 1397, and one Herman Lynkfuss of Sorau in 1381. The literal meaning of the name was "left-handed," or even "one who is clumsy or awkward," but was taken on by numerous branches of the family. They became a power unto themselves, and were elevated to the ranks of nobility as they grew wealthier and more influential.
Early History of the Link family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Link research. Another 165 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1658, 1816, 1286, 1674, 1734, 1734, 1807, 1658, 1820 and 1905 are included under the topic Early Link History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Link Spelling Variations
In the medieval era, many different cultural groups lived in the German states. There are thus many regional variations of German surnames from that era. Westphalians spoke Low German, which is similar to modern Dutch. Many German names carry suffixes that identify where they came from. Others have phrases attached that identify something about the original bearer. Other variations in German names resulted from the fact that medieval scribes worked without the aid of any spelling rules. The spelling variations of the name Link include Linker, Lincker, Link, Linke, Linke, Lynker, Lyncker, Lynke, Linkhand, Lyncke and many more.
Early Notables of the Link family (pre 1700)
During this period prominent bearers of the name Link were Johann Heinrich Linck the elder (1674-1734), a German pharmacist and naturalist; and his son, Johann Heinrich Linck the younger (1734-1807); and Conrad Linker, the Lord of Daeberhausen, who was made a Baron in 1658. This highly educated man filled the position of emissary to many European courts, and...
In the United States, the name Link is the 1,605th most popular surname with an estimated 19,896 people with that name. 
Austria was made a republic after the First World War. The Austro-Hungarian Empire was broken up by the Treaty of Versailles and many of its people found themselves in the new nation of Czechoslovakia. Many other Austrians and expatriate Austrians made their way to North America in the 20th century. Most landed in Philadelphia, later continuing on to the states of Ohio, Texas, Illinois, California, New York, and Maryland. Some Austrian settlers also went to western Canada and Ontario. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Link or a variant listed above:
Link Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Link Settlers in United States in the 19th Century