Coleman History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

While the Anglicized versions of Irish names are familiar to most people, many Irish names have a long and proud Gaelic heritage that is often unknown. The Coleman surname stems from two distinct Gaelic names O'Clúmháin, derived from the Irish root "clúmh," meaning "down," or "feathers," and from O Colmain, derived the Latin word "columba," which means "dove." [1]

Early Origins of the Coleman family

The surname Coleman was first found in County Sligo (Irish: Sligeach), in the province of Connacht in Northwestern Ireland, where they were a sept of O'Colmain, a branch of Hy Fiachrach. [2]

Early History of the Coleman family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Coleman research. Another 178 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 117 and 1172 are included under the topic Early Coleman History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Coleman Spelling Variations

The spelling of names in Ireland during the Middle Ages was rarely consistent. This inconsistency was due to the scribes and church officials' attempts to record orally defined names in writing. The common practice of recording names as they sounded resulted in spelling variations such as Colman, Coleman, O'Colman, MacColeman, McColeman, Coalman, Coulman, Colemen, Colmen, Coalmen, Colmin, Colmen, Coulmen, Coulmin, Colemin and many more.

Early Notables of the Coleman family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Coleman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Coleman World Ranking

In the United States, the name Coleman is the 82nd most popular surname with an estimated 236,265 people with that name. [3] However, in Canada, the name Coleman is ranked the 712nd most popular surname with an estimated 7,480 people with that name. [4] And in Newfoundland, Canada, the name Coleman is the 598th popular surname with an estimated 77 people with that name. [5] Australia ranks Coleman as 189th with 16,820 people. [6] New Zealand ranks Coleman as 209th with 2,696 people. [7] The United Kingdom ranks Coleman as 219th with 26,288 people. [8]


United States Coleman migration to the United States +

Many destitute Irish families in the 18th and 19th centuries decided to leave their homeland, which had in many ways been scarred by English colonial rule. One of the most frequent destinations for these families was North America where it was possible for an Irish family to own their own parcel of land. Many of the early settlers did find land awaiting them in British North America, or even later in America, but for the majority of immigrants that arrived as a result of the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s the ownership of land was often a long way off. These Irish people were initially put to work on such industrial projects as the building of bridges, canals, and railroads, or they worked at manufacturing positions within factories. Whenever they arrived, the Irish made enormous contributions to the infant nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the earliest immigrants to bearer the name of Coleman were found through extensive research of immigration and passenger lists:

Coleman Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Coleman, who landed in America in 1630 [9]
  • Katherine Coleman, who arrived in Virginia in 1635 [9]
  • Joseph Coleman, who arrived in America in 1637 [9]
  • Joseph Coleman and his wife Sara and four children settled in New England in 1637
  • Thomas Coleman, who settled in Newbury, and later Boston, Massachusetts. He was under contract, but not indentured to Sir Richard Saltonstall, to keep his cattle. He was negligent and unfaithful, as the court ruled, but, strangely a year later in 1637. he was admitted a freeman
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Coleman Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Rota Coleman, who arrived in Virginia in 1703 [9]
  • Robert Coleman, who landed in Virginia in 1703 [9]
  • Geo Coleman, who arrived in Virginia in 1704 [9]
  • Philip Coleman, aged 50, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1740 [9]
  • Margaret Coleman, who landed in Virginia in 1744 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Coleman Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Isaac, Coleman Jr., who arrived in America in 1803 [9]
  • John Coleman, who landed in America in 1804 [9]
  • Daniel Coleman, who arrived in Long Island in 1812 [9]
  • David Coleman, aged 33, who arrived in New York in 1812 [9]
  • Mrs. Coleman, who landed in New York NY in 1812 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Coleman migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Coleman Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • William Coleman, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Mary Coleman, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Bartw Coleman, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Bartholomew Coleman, who arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1754
Coleman Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Bartholomew Coleman was a proprietor and occupier of fishing rooms at Trinity, Newfoundland in 1800
  • Andrew Coleman, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1806
  • Patrick Coleman from Lismore, County Waterford, Ireland, settled in St. John's, Newfoundland in 1811 [10]
  • Patrick Coleman, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1818
  • Patrick Coleman, aged 19, an apothecary, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the barque "Independence" from Kinsale, Ireland
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Coleman migration to Australia +

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

Coleman Settlers in Australia in the 18th Century
  • Miss Sarah Coleman, (Wilkinson, Salmon), (b. 1777), aged 21, English convict who was convicted in Devon, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Britannia III" on 18th July 1798, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, she died in 1853 [11]
Coleman Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Coleman, British Convict who was convicted in Kent, England for life, transported aboard the "Earl Cornwallis" in August 1800, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Richard Coleman, British Convict who was convicted in London, England for life, transported aboard the "Earl Cornwallis" in August 1800, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Patrick Coleman, Irish convict who was convicted in Dublin, Ireland for life, transported aboard the "Atlas" on 29th November 1801, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [13]
  • Miss Norah Coleman, (Kellman), British Convict who was convicted in Hampshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Experiment" on 4th December 1803, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [14]
  • James Coleman Mr. settled in New South Wales, Australia in 1823 [15]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Coleman 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:

Coleman Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • J Coleman, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840 aboard the ship Indemnity [16]
  • Thomas Coleman, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Thomas Coleman, aged 35, a baker, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgway" in 1842
  • Rebecca Coleman, aged 36, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgway" in 1842
  • James Coleman, aged 15, a baker, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgway" in 1842
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

West Indies Coleman migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [17]
Coleman Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Mr. John Coleman, (b. 1595), aged 40, British settler travelling aboard the ship "Expedition" arriving in Barbados in 1636 [18]

Contemporary Notables of the name Coleman (post 1700) +

  • Lester Knox Coleman III (1943-2021), American who was the co-author of the 1993 book Trail of the Octopus: From Beirut to Lockerbie – Inside the DIA
  • Bessie Coleman (1892-1926), American civil aviator; on June 15, 1921 she became the first African American woman and the first Native American to earn an aviation pilot's license
  • Zendaya Maree Stoermer Coleman (b. 1996), American actress, singer and producer. She began her career as a child model and backup dancer, before gaining prominence for her role as Rocky Blue on the Disney Channel sitcom Shake It Up In 2013 she competed on Dancing with the Stars. She become the youngest winner of the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. Some of her roles include The Greatest Showman, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Spider-Man: Far from Home
  • Catherine Daisy Coleman (1997-2020), American sexual abuse victim advocate
  • James Malone Coleman (1929-2020), American second bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee from Memphis, Tennessee
  • Kelly "King" Coleman (1938-2019), American professional basketball player
  • Benjamin "Ben" Coleman (1961-2019), American professional basketball player
  • Nicholas J. "Nick" Coleman (1950-2018), American journalist for the Star Tribune
  • John Coleman (1934-2018), American TV weatherman and co-founder of The Weather Channel
  • William Thaddeus "Bill" Coleman Jr. (1920-2017), American attorney and politician, 4th United States Secretary of Transportation (1975-1977)
  • ... (Another 223 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Arrow Air Flight 1285
  • Mr. Bobby Lee Coleman (b. 1965), American Private 1st Class from Rochester, New York, USA who died in the crash [19]
Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. LeBaron  Coleman (1851-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [20]
  • Mr. Vincent J. P.  Coleman (1876-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [20]
HMAS Sydney II
HMS Cornwall
  • Ernest Coleman (d. 1942), British Stoker Petty Officer aboard the HMS Cornwall when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [22]
HMS Dorsetshire
  • William James Coleman (d. 1945), British Marine aboard the HMS Dorsetshire when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [23]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. Dennis J Coleman (b. 1922), English Marine serving for the Royal Marine from Chiddingly, Sussex, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [24]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Maurice George Newberry Coleman (d. 1939), British Boy Telegraphist with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [25]
  • Jack Alfred Coleman (1921-1939), British Boy Telegraphist with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [25]
  • Edward William Coleman (1900-1939), British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [25]
Lady of the Lake
  • Miss Eliza Coleman (b. 1805), Irish traveller from Moville, Ireland who sailed aboard the "Lady of the Lake" from Greenock, Scotland on 8th April 1833 to Quebec, Canada when the ship hit ice and sunk of the coast of Newfoundland on the 11th May 1833 and she died in the sinking
RMS Lusitania
  • Miss Susan Coleman, Irish 2nd Class passenger residing in Brooklyn, New York, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [26]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Albert Edward Coleman (d. 1912), aged 28, English Saloon Steward from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [27]
  • Mr. John Coleman (d. 1912), aged 57, English Mess Steward from Itchen, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Mackay-Bennett [27]
  • Mr. John Coleman (d. 1912), aged 57, English Mess Steward from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [27]


Suggested Readings for the name Coleman +

  • Coleman Family History by George Simpson.
  • Colemans of Greene County: a Bit of Alabama History by Stephen Beasley Coleman.

  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, More Irish Families. Dublin: Irish Academic Press, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0)
  3. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  4. ^ https://forebears.io/surnames/
  5. ^ 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)
  6. ^ https://forebears.io/australia/surnames
  7. ^ https://forebears.io/new-zealand/surnames
  8. ^ https://www.surnamemap.eu/unitedkingdom/surnames_ranking.php?p=10
  9. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  10. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  11. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 30th October 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/Britannia
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 13th August 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/earl-cornwallis
  13. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th July 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/atlas
  14. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 22nd March 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/coromandel-and-experiment
  15. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th September 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/earl-st-vincent
  16. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  17. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  18. ^ Pilgrim Ship Lists Early 1600's retrieved 29th September 2021. (Retrieved from https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/shiplist.htm)
  19. ^ American War Memorials - Flight 1285. (Retrieved 2016, August 24) . Retrieved from http://www.uswarmemorials.org/html/monument_details.php?SiteID=317&MemID=550
  20. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  21. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  22. ^ Force Z Survivors Crew List HMS Cornwall (Retrieved 2018, February 13th) - Retrieved from https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listcornwallcrew.html#A
  23. ^ Force Z Survivors HMS Dorsetshire Crew List, (Retrieved 2018, February 13th), https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listdorsetshirecrew.html
  24. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  25. ^ 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
  26. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  27. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html


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