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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Rollins family come from? What is the English Rollins family crest and coat of arms? When did the Rollins family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Rollins family history?

Rollins is an ancient Norman name that arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Rollins comes from the Norman given name Ralph. This name, which also occurs as Ralf, Rolf, and Raoul, is adapted from the Old French given name Raol.


Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Rawlings, Rawlins, Rawlington, Rawlinson and others.

First found in Herefordshire where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rollins research. Another 239 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1536, 1523, 1536, 1508, 1521, 1620, 1670, 1576, 1631, 1610, 1647, 1708, 1705, 1706, 1679, 1690 and 1755 are included under the topic Early Rollins History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 229 words (16 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rollins Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Rollins family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 109 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Rollins or a variant listed above were:

Rollins Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • James Rollins, who landed in Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1632

Rollins Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Ben jamen Rollins, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1787

Rollins Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Elithabet Rollins, who arrived in Texas in 1835
  • Stephen Rollins, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1866
  • Thomas Rollins, who landed in Arkansas in 1890

Rollins Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • H. Rollins arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Viscount Sandon" in 1860


  • Jack Rollins (1915-2015), born Jacob Rabinowitz, an American twelve-time Primetime Emmy nominated film producer and manager, known for his work with Woody Allen and most recently in Late Night with David Letterman (1982), Midnight in Paris (2011) and Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008)
  • Brigadier-General Francis Willard Rollins (1893-1966), American Commanding Officer Artillery 66th Division (1943-1945)
  • Reed Clark Rollins (1911-1998), American botanist, professor at Harvard University
  • Kevin Barney Rollins (b. 1952), American businessman and philanthropist, former President and CEO of Dell Computers
  • John Rollins (b. 1975), American professional PGA golfer
  • Edward Henry Rollins (1824-1889), American politician, United States Representative and Senator from New Hampshire
  • Richard John Rollins (b. 1938), American former Major League Baseball third baseman
  • Wayne Monte "Tree" Rollins (b. 1955), retired American professional NBA basketball player
  • James Sidney Rollins (1812-1888), American politician, Member of Missouri State Legislature; U.S. Representative from Missouri, 1861-65
  • John W. Rollins Sr. (1916-2000), American Republican politician, Lieutenant Governor of Delaware, 1953-57; Delegate to Republican National Convention from Delaware, 1956 (alternate), 1972; Candidate for Governor of Delaware, 1960



The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Cognosce teipsum et disce pati
Motto Translation: Know thyself, and learn to suffer.


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  1. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  2. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  3. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  4. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  5. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  6. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  7. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  8. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  11. ...

The Rollins Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Rollins Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 10 November 2015 at 08:57.

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