Where did the Brolliars, Bralliars, Bralliers and Brolliers come from?
They came from the Alsace region of France around 1769. Their home in France was on the Rhine River on the border to Germany. Christian Brallier Sr. lived there with his family and he decided they should move to the United States. He brought his wife and four children, Emanuel Brallier, Christian Brolliar II, Samuel Brallier, and Esther Brallier. They came partly to escape the religious persecution that protestants felt in France. The sea voyage from France was quite difficult. Severe storms damaged their boat and drove them far to the south of their intended course. They were running out of food and water when they luckily came upon the coast of Jamaica. There they made repairs to the damaged boat rudder and made plans to continue to the United States. Unfortunately yellow fever broke out on the boat while they were in Jamaica and Christian Brallier Sr. and his wife caught it and died. After the parents were buried the boat put to sea again, with the four children aboard, and landed at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There the city-fathers took charge of the money and goods of the orphan children until they came of age. It is believed that the children were then bound out to farmers in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
Spelling of the Family Name
The origin of the family name is difficult to determine. There are indications that Christian Sr. probably spelled his name Brallier and that his children spelled their names Christian Brolliar II, Emanuel Brallier, Esther Brallier, and Samuel Brallier. The children of Emanuel and Samuel spelled their name Brallier. The children of Christian Brolliar II spelled their name Brolliar. Levi the grandson of Christian II spelled his name Brollier as did his descendants. Dr. Floyd Burton Bralliar the son of Washington Brolliar and great-grandson of Christian II was the first descendant to spell his name Bralliar whose children continued that spelling.
Naturally most people like the spelling of the family name that they use. As stated in the book below the true or correct spelling of the family name cannot now be determined with any certainty. Some of the old tax records even show the same person to have the spelling of his name to sometimes change from year to year.
In checking a French phone directory on the internet the only spelling of the four found there is Brollier for which there were three listings. Through correspondence with one Brollier in France who is related to the three listed in the telephone book we know of only a total of seven Brolliers in France, all whom are closely related. Here in the US Brallier is the most common spelling followed by Brollier, Brolliar and Bralliar.
There is also a Swiss branch of the family who spell their name Braillard. The book below has some correspondence in the 1930's and 1940's between family members in the United States and Rene Braillard in Switzerland, Rene stated that his ancestors lived around Montbéliard in the Alsace region of France before and during the French Revolution. There are 142 Braillards currently listed in the French phone directory. The Swiss phone directory is not accessible over the internet.
Family History Book
A family history book titled History of the Brallier Family was published in 1951. Its sub-title is A HISTORY AND GENEALOGY of the Bralliers, Brolliars, Brolliers, etc. It was written by J. Merle Brallier assisted by Dr. John K. Brallier Sr. and Mrs. Bertha Brolliar Kasson. It is an excellent book with 166 pages containing family history, photos, letters, antidotes, copies of early county records and the genealogy of most or many of the family members from 1769 to 1951. The book lists the genealogy of over two thousand four hundred descendants of Christian Brallier. For information about obtaining photocopies of this book click here.
Family Sites in the United States
Brallier, Pennsylvania - Brallier is in southern Pennsylvania about 60 miles west of Harrisburg, PA.
Brollier Airfield is near Moscow. That's Moscow, Kansas.
Purpose of This Site
The purpose of this site is to provide a location for information and history concerning the family.
The funding for this site is provided by the sponsors below. Please give them and their products your patronage.
Any questions, comments or suggestions are appreciated. Send them to Richard@brolliar.com
Copyright© 1999-2000 by Richard Brolliar. ALL Rights Reserved.
Jess M. Brallier