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Book details
  • Genre:HISTORY
  • SubGenre:Europe / Great Britain
  • Language:English
  • Series title:The Rise and Fall of a Scottish Noble Family
  • Series Number:1
  • Pages:312
  • Format:Hardcover
  • Hardcover ISBN:9781483563510

House of Dunbar

Part I - Rise of the Earls of Dunbar

by Lyle Dunbar

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Overview
Do you know what your last name means? How did you get your last name? Where did your ancestors originate? Do you have any connections to royalty in your family history? Did your ancestors make any contributions to history? I thought about all of those questions, and went looking for the answers related to my Dunbar family name. I discovered that “Dunbar” meant “fort on a hill” in the old Gaelic language of Scotland. This name was given to Dunbar Castle, as well as the adjacent town of Dunbar, in southeast Scotland. The owners of Dunbar Castle in the 11th to 15th centuries were Scottish nobles known as the Earls of Dunbar because the name identified the location of their land holdings. By about 1300 in the Middle Ages, surnames were adopted to distinguish individuals within the growing population. The families of the Earls of Dunbar adopted the surname of Dunbar. Most of the Dunbars in the world got their name handed-down from these ancient Earls of Dunbar and the location of Dunbar Castle and Dunbar town. Those with the Dunbar surname should read this story to explore where they fit in the House of Dunbar. Those interested in Scottish history will get an overview plus a description of the role of the Earls of Dunbar in that history. There were many noble families in Scotland, but the Dunbar story is unique due to the rise of the earls to the highest levels of power, and their fall from power, never to be regained. Those with other Scottish names and ancestry may be encouraged to explore their own family history to find their connections to famous people and places in Scottish history.
Description
Do you know what your last name means? How did you get your last name? Where did your ancestors originate? Do you have any connections to royalty in your family history? Did your ancestors make any contributions to history? I thought about all of those questions, and went looking for the answers related to my Dunbar family name. I discovered that “Dunbar” meant “fort on a hill” in the old Gaelic language of Scotland. This name was given to Dunbar Castle, as well as the adjacent town of Dunbar, in southeast Scotland. The owners of Dunbar Castle in the 11th to 15th centuries were Scottish nobles known as the Earls of Dunbar because the name identified the location of their land holdings. By about 1300 in the Middle Ages, surnames were adopted to distinguish individuals within the growing population. The families of the Earls of Dunbar adopted the surname of Dunbar. Most of the Dunbars in the world got their name handed-down from these ancient Earls of Dunbar and the location of Dunbar Castle and Dunbar town. The author refers to the Dunbar family as the “House of Dunbar” because it was more than a Scottish clan. The Earls of Dunbar were nobility with a line of descent from ancient Scottish and English kings. They played a prominent role in Scottish and English history in the Middle Ages. The Earls became one of the wealthiest and most powerful families in Scotland by the 15th century, which accounts for the word “Rise” of a Scottish noble family in the title. But the most distinguishing feature of the House of Dunbar was its loss of titles and power, never to be regained, in the mid-15th century, which accounts for the word “Fall” in the title. The author’s House of Dunbar story is told in the context of famous people, places, and historical events in three separate parts. In Part I-Rise of the Earls of Dunbar, the book covers the early history of Scotland, the rise to power of the Earls of Dunbar, and the forfeiture of the Earldom of Dunbar in 1435. In Part II-After the Fall of the Earldom of Dunbar, the book covers the turbulent history in Scotland after the forfeiture of the Dunbar Scottish earldom until the mid-1700s when there was a major immigration of Scottish people, including the author’s Dunbar ancestor, to America. In Part III-Coming to America, the book covers the story of Scottish immigration to America, and the author’s Scotch-Irish Dunbar family history in America from the mid-1700’s over eight generations to the present day. Those with the Dunbar surname should read this story to explore where they fit in the House of Dunbar. Those interested in Scottish history will get an overview plus a description of the role of the Earls of Dunbar in that history. There were many noble families in Scotland, but the Dunbar story is unique due to the rise of the earls to the highest levels of power, and their fall from power, never to be regained. Those with other Scottish names and ancestry may be encouraged to explore their own family history to find their connections to famous people and places in Scottish history.
About the author
The author, Lyle Dunbar, has enjoyed a diversified and successful professional life as an engineer, serial entrepreneur, real estate investor, and agricultural businessman, as well as an amateur writer in his later years. He grew up on a farm in Fairfield, Iowa. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees in aerospace engineering from Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa. He then was a PhD candidate in engineering at UCLA in Los Angeles, CA. He entered the aerospace industry first as an employee of TRW Systems in Los Angeles, CA. He was a “rocket scientist” making key technical contributions in inter-continental ballistic missile and ballistic missile defense systems development. He started his entrepreneurial business career at Science Applications, Inc. (SAI) in Los Angeles and moved to La Jolla, CA in 1979. He then was Senior Vice President and General Manager, Director, and key shareholder at SPARTA, Inc. He was founder, major shareholder, CEO, and Chairman of DR Technologies, Inc., San Diego, CA, and then founded Composite Technology Investors, both of which owned and operated several companies engaged in aerospace and commercial composites manufacturing. He is the author of numerous technical reports and papers over his engineering career. He has been married to Ann Fullerton Kramer Dunbar for over 42 years, lives in San Diego, CA, and has five children, eleven grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. He became interested in his Dunbar family history, joined Clan Dunbar in 2008, participated in the Clan Dunbar DNA testing program, and began researching his Dunbar family history in 2009. He first visited Scotland in 1990, and then revisited his Scottish roots in Scotland as part of the Clan Dunbar Scotland Tours of July, 2009, and August, 2014. The House of Dunbar books were the result of the author’s research into the Dunbar family history.
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