The FREY family BLAZON OF ARMS: A dove, with wings extended, holding in the beak an olive branch. The FREY FAMILY CREST: A five pointed star between two elephant trunks over a knight's battle helmet. COLORS: Orange and Yellow. ORIGIN: Germany.
In Germany, family surnames did not
generally come into use until late in the middle ages. The name FREY is first
recorded in the thirteenth century. The name FREY and it's variations, FREYE,
FREI, FREYH, etc. may be classified as a surname which indicates social status.
In this case, the name is derived from the word "frei" which means
"free" and which indicates that the original bearer of the name was a
"free-man", as opposed to the general public who were
"serfs" or "bondsmen" tied to working for the lord of the
manor. It is also possible that in some instances, the name may be derived from
the personal name FREY, which was the name of the Norse god of marriage and
fertility. As Thursday was named for Thor's day, Friday was Frey's day.
The earliest recorded bearer of the name is found in England with a reference to one Walter le Free who was recorded in 1255. Adam le Fre is recorded in 1282. Heinrich Liber was recorded in Kanstanx in 1272 where he held the position of Tax Collector. German names were originally written in Latin and "liber" in Latin means "free".
My genealogy search involves the FREY family from Wayne County, NY whose origins have been traced to Büdesheim, Germany, where on January 10, 1817 Adam Frey was born. Adam Frey came to America in 1839. That same year, Christina NUSBICKEL of Wöllstein, Germany came to America through the port of New York, up the Hudson River to Albany, and across New York State by packet-boat on the Erie Canal to Lyons, NY. Adam and Christina met, and they were married in Newark, Wayne County, NY in 1843 and became the parents of eleven children, born mostly in the town of Arcadia, NY near the villages of Lyons, East Palmyra, Newark and Fairville. Their descendants are today spread far and wide across the United States.
In 2005 I was able to visit the town of Adam's birth, Büdesheim, Germany, on the Nahe River, where I found the record of his birth, and the names of his parents, Michaelis Frey and Magdalenae Mayer. In 2007, I again made a trip to Germany, which included a trip to Mainz. The Catholic Church Archives in Mainz kept the records for that area of Germany prior to 1800. Now I have been able to go back one more generation, to the marriage of Simon Frey and Katharina Wendel in 1775. They are the parents of Michaelis Frey and the grand parents of Adam Frey, my great-great grandfather.
The Bingen Bügerbüro
Klopp Castle, in the center of Bingen, near Büdesheim
The New York Frey Family Reunion
This site is an on-going work-in-progress. If you have any information on the Frey Family, I would greatly appreciate your help. Those of you who have been in contact with me by e-mail, I will be "keeping an eye out" for your ancestors, too. -------Elwyn Frey ;-)
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