Colbourne History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Colbourne name has descended through the generations from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. Their name comes from having lived in Colbourne, a township in the parish of Catterick in the North Riding of Yorkshire. [1] It is from the place-name that the family name is derived. [2] [3]

The place-names come from the Old English words "col," meaning "cool," and "burna," meaning "stream," collectively meaning "dweller near a cold stream." [4]

The Domesday Book of 1086 lists this place as Corburne [5] and by 1198 it was known as Coleburn.

Early Origins of the Colbourne family

The surname Colbourne was first found in Yorkshire where one of the first of the name on record was Geoffrey de Colebrunn in 1208 who held estates in the North Riding of Yorkshire in the parish of Catterick. Later, William de Colburn was listed as a Freeman of York in 1386. [6]

The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 included Ricardus Collebround and Margarela Colbrand. [7]

Researching old Somerset records we found Robert Colbern and William Colebrond both listed 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) [8]

Early History of the Colbourne family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Colbourne research. Another 115 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1370, 1386, 1693, 1631, 1677, 1695, 1686, 1622, 1701, 1701, 1778, 1863, 1778, 1794, 1795, 1799, 1801, 1800 and 1808 are included under the topic Early Colbourne History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Colbourne Spelling Variations

Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Colbourne has undergone many spelling variations, including Colburn, Colburne, Colborne, Colbourne, Coulbourne, Colbourn, Cullburn, Colborn, Colbryn, Coulbryne, Culbourne, Cullburne and many more.

Early Notables of the Colbourne family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Prisca Coborn (1622-1701) an English wealthy widow of a brewer, who established the Coopers' Company and Coborn School, a coeducational school in Bow in 1701. Sir John Colborne, first Baron Seaton (1778-1863), general, only son of Samuel Colborne of Lyndhurst, Hampshire, was born there on 16 Feb. 1778. He entered the army as an ensign in the 20th regiment on 10 July 1794, and won every step of promotion without purchase. He was promoted lieutenant on 4 Sept. 1795, and captain-lieutenant on 11 Aug...
Another 90 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Colbourne Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Colbourne Ranking

In Newfoundland, Canada, the name Colbourne is the 263rd most popular surname with an estimated 170 people with that name. [9]


United States Colbourne migration to the United States +

To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Colbourne were among those contributors:

Colbourne Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Francis Colbourne, aged 36, who immigrated to the United States from Liverpool, in 1903
  • Emma Colbourne, aged 39, who settled in America from Brighton, England, in 1904
  • James Colbourne, aged 51, who immigrated to the United States from Brighton, in 1904
  • Louisa A. Colbourne, aged 50, who landed in America from Stratford on Avon, England, in 1904
  • Wm. G. Colbourne, aged 66, who immigrated to the United States from Stratford on Avon, England, in 1904
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Colbourne migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Colbourne Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Gilbert K. Colbourne, aged 28, who immigrated to Red Deer, Canada, in 1914
  • Gertrude Colbourne, aged 26, who settled in Twillingate, Newfoundland, in 1923

Australia Colbourne migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Colbourne Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Charles Colbourne, aged 18, a labourer, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Calphurnia" in 1849 [10]

New Zealand Colbourne migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Colbourne Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Benjamin Colbourne, British settler travelling from London, UK aboard the ship "Assaye" arriving in Auckland, North Island, New Zealand on 26th December 1874 [11]
  • Mrs. Harriett Colbourne, British settler travelling from London, UK with 3 children aboard the ship "Assaye" arriving in Auckland, North Island, New Zealand on 26th December 1874 [11]
  • Eliza M. Colbourne, aged 24, a nurse, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Gainsborough" in 1878 [12]

Contemporary Notables of the name Colbourne (post 1700) +

  • Mark Colbourne (b. 1969), Welsh gold and silver medalist Paralympic cyclist at the 2012 London Paralympic Games
  • Maurice Colbourne (1939-1989), British stage and television actor

HMS Royal Oak
  • James William Frederick Colbourne (1921-1939), British Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [13]
  • Frank Edward Colbourne (1900-1939), British Leading Stoker with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [13]


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  3. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  5. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  6. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  7. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  8. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  9. ^ The order of Common Surnames in 1955 in Newfoundland retrieved on 20th October 2021 (retrieved from Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland by E.R. Seary corrected edition ISBN 0-7735-1782-0)
  10. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The CALPHURNIA 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Calpurnia.htm
  11. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  12. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 3rd November 2011). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  13. ^ Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/ship68.html


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