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Surname Backer - Meaning and Origin

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A Surprising Journey Through My Ancestry: Unfolding the Legacy of the Surname Backer

Taking an iGENEA DNA test led to fascinating discoveries about my surname "Backer." Contrary to prior beliefs, my Backer roots revealed a mix of Scandinavian, Germanic, and Anglo-Saxon heritage, challenging my understanding of my family history.

A. Backer

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Backer: What does the surname Backer mean?

The last name Backer is of German origin, deriving from the Middle High German word ‘bacher’ which translates to mean ‘roofer,’ ‘thatcher,’ or ‘tiler.’ As such, the name is likely to have developed from an occupational surname, indicating that an ancestor of the family were involved in construction in some way.

An alternate spelling of the name, ‘Bäcker’ is also seen, which translates to mean ‘baker,’ potentially indicating that this was another occupation of the family. This spelling of the name is more prevalent today, in countries such as Austria and Germany.

Backer is a popular name that has spread from its Germanic roots to other countries around the world, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Examples of notable people who have held the last name include: the American photographer Henry Herschel Backer; the American-born British singer and songwriter, Arthur Backer; the American long-distance runner, Arthur M. Backer; and the American actor, director and producer, Daniel F. Backer.

Despite its origins, the last name Backer can come to signify the many varied paths and accomplishments of its many bearers throughout the years; no longer indicating the traditional occupations of those before them.

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Backer: Where does the name Backer come from?

The last name Backer is relatively common around the world, and can be found in most counties where Germanic language has historically been spoken. In Europe, the surname Backer is most commonly found in the Netherlands and Germany. This surname is also quite common in the United States, where it is estimated that thousands of individuals carry it.

In the Netherlands, the highest concentration of Backer is found in the provinces of Utrecht, Gelderland, Overijssel, and Drenthe. Similarly, in Germany the surname is most common in the states of Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, and Rheinland-Pfalz.

In the United States, the surname Backer is found most commonly in several Midwestern states and Missouri. It is also quite common in New England states, especially Massachusetts, Maine, and New Hampshire, the states in which the earliest Backer immigrants settled.

In more recent years, the surname has become quite common in areas of the United States in which German immigrants have settled. It is likely to be found in almost any city or state with a moderately sized population of German ancestry individuals. Additionally, the surname can be found across Canada, especially in the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, and Alberta.

Variations of the surname Backer

The surname Backer is most commonly derived from a medieval nickname given to someone who was a baker or someone who worked in the bakery trade. It is also a Dutch and German variant of the word Becker, which has the same origin.

The English spelling of this surname is Backer, although it may occasionally be spelled Bakker or Bäcker. Common variants in other languages include Bäckers (German), Bakker (Dutch) and Bakkere (Scandinavian). The Backer surname is also occasionally seen as Becher, Beecher, Beker, Bakar, and even Becker.

Because of the many different forms of the name, different versions may be found in different countries. In the United States, for example, the most popular variants are Bakker, Backer and Becker. In Germany and the Netherlands, the predominant versions are Backer and Bäcker. In the United Kingdom, Backer and Becker are found most commonly, while in Poland and Russia, variants such as Beker and Bakar are more common.

In addition to the various spellings and variants, Backer is also an uncommon first or given name, and is occasionally seen as a middle name. Furthermore, the Backer surname is often seen with different prefixes such as van, von or de, which when used together create several variations on the original spelling.

The surname Backer is found all over the world today, in various forms, often amongst the descendants of Dutch and German immigrants.

Famous people with the name Backer

  • Jeff Backer: American politician and former Minnesota State Representative
  • Anna Backer: American singer-songwriter and record producer
  • Eddie Backer: former football defensive tackle
  • Kees Backer: Dutch former footballer
  • Bo Backer: Danish professional football player
  • Josh Backer: American former football cornerback
  • Sal Backer: American former baseball outfielder
  • Robert Backer: German football goalkeeper
  • Chris Backer: Canadian professional ice hockey player
  • Verena Backer: German former tennis player
  • Richard Backer: American former lieutenant general
  • Mike Backer: American former football player
  • Dick Backer: American former National Hockey League linesman
  • Lisa Backer: American songwriter and Broadway composer
  • Caroline Backer: Danish retired football defender
  • George Backer: American former Major League Baseball player
  • Jake Backer: American former football running back and college football head coach
  • Mitch Backer: American television producer and screenwriter
  • Ian Backer: Canadian former football quarterback
  • Lou Backer: former American Major League Baseball player

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