This surname is of territorial origin from the barony, now parish, of the same name in Fife. William de Abercromby of the county of Fife did homage in 1296. As William de Haberchrumbi he was a juror on an inquest in the same year. Johan de Abercromby of the same county was recorded in the same year, and in 1305 he served on an inquest made at the town of St. John of Perth. The Abercrombies of that Ilk became extinct in the direct line in the middle of the 17th century, and the Abercrombies of Birkenbog are now the representative family of the name. In the lists of the Scots Guards in France, the name appears as Abre Commier. The burghs of Scotland owe much of their prosperity to the large immigration of foreigners which went on during the 12th and 13th centuries. The original founders of the towns, were in many cases wanderers from Flanders, who brought with them their habits of industry and knowledge of trade and manufacturer. Settlers of this description came in great numbers to England in the reign of Henry 1. (1100-1135) and when Henry 11 (1154-1189) drove all foreigners out of his dominions they flocked into Scotland, where a more enlightened policy made them welcome. This is also the surname of a British military family which was prominent in the 18th century. Its most famous member was killed at the battle of Aboukir Bay. He was Sir Ralph Abercromby (1734-1801) Scottish soldier and hero of the Napoleonic wars. He was born in Menstrie in Clackmannanshire, went to Rugby School and studied law at Edinburgh. He joined the 3rd Dragoons in 1756, and served in Europe for seven years. He was MP for Clackmannanshire from 1774 until 1780, then rejoined the army in 1793 and distinguished himself as a major-general in Flanders. He held commands in Ireland and Scotland and in 1800 he was in command in the Mediterranean to deal with the French army left by Napoleon in Egypt. He led a successful operation, but was mortally wounded in the action.
The associated coat of arms is recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. (Birkenbog, County Banff).
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