Collier History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Collier finds its origins with the ancient Anglo-Saxons of England. It was given to one who worked as a person who made or sold charcoal. The surname Collier is derived from the Old English word col, which means coal; as such it is thought to have originally been an occupational name for a burner of charcoal or a gatherer or seller of coal. [1]

Early Origins of the Collier family

The surname Collier was first found in Lancashire where one of the first records of the name was Ranulf Colier listed there in 1150. A few years later, Bernard le Coliere was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Somerset in 1172. [1] The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 revealed: Henry le Colyer in Buckinghamshire; Robert le Coliere in Bedfordshire; and Thomas le Colier in Huntingdonshire. Over one hundred years later, the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls list: Adam Colier; and Benedictus Colier. [2]

Early History of the Collier family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Collier research. Another 106 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1150, 1350, 1685, 1677, 1622, 1678, 1656, 1730, 1699, 1680, 1732, 1680, 1650, 1726, 1650, 1622, 1678, 1622, 1708 and 1786 are included under the topic Early Collier History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Collier Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore, spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Collier has been recorded under many different variations, including Collier, Collyer, Colier, Colyer, Colyar, Colyear and many more.

Early Notables of the Collier family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Sir Alexander Colyear (d. circa 1685), who was made the 1st Baronet Colyear of Holland in 1677; Giles Collier (1622-1678), an English divine; and David Colyear (c.1656-1730), who was created 1st Earl of Portmore in 1699. Arthur Collier (1680-1732), was an English philosopher and "metaphysician, born 12 Oct. 1680 at Langford Magna, Wiltshire, a family living which had been held by his great-grandfather. His grandfather, Henry Collier, succeeded and was ejected under the Commonwealth. Two of Henry Collier's sons were transported to Jamaica for their share in Penruddocke's rising at Salisbury. " [3] Jeremy Collier...
Another 123 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Collier Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Collier World Ranking

In the United States, the name Collier is the 491st most popular surname with an estimated 57,201 people with that name. [4] However, in Newfoundland, Canada, the name Collier is ranked the 167th most popular surname with an estimated 236 people with that name. [5] And in France, the name Collier is the 2,708th popular surname with an estimated 2,000 - 2,500 people with that name. [6] Australia ranks Collier as 716th with 5,449 people. [7] New Zealand ranks Collier as 464th with 1,488 people. [8] The United Kingdom ranks Collier as 465th with 13,985 people. [9]

Ireland Migration of the Collier family to Ireland

Some of the Collier family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 30 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Collier migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Collier or a variant listed above:

Collier Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Daniell Collier, who arrived in Virginia in 1618 [10]
  • William Collier (ca.1585–1671), English grocer who was one of the few London Adventurers to voyage to New England settling at Duxbury, Massachusetts in 1633, later to become Assistant Governor in the Plymouth Colony
  • Thomas Collier, who settled in Hingham Massachusetts in 1635
  • Henry Collier, who landed in Virginia in 1648 [10]
  • William Collier, who landed in Maryland in 1649 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Collier Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Sara Collier, who arrived in Virginia in 1704 [10]
Collier Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Nicholas Collier, who landed in New York in 1835 [10]
  • Johann Collier, aged 45, who arrived in America in 1846 [10]
  • Jacob Collier, aged 23, who arrived in Missouri in 1847 [10]
  • C W Collier, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850 [10]
  • Dr. Collier, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Collier migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Collier Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Christopher Collier, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • John Collier, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
  • Ralph Collier, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Rd Collier, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Joseph Collier, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Collier migration to Australia +

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

Collier Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Richard Collier, Irish convict who was convicted in Dublin, Ireland for 7 years, transported aboard the "Atlas" on 29th November 1801, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [11]
  • Mr. William Collier, English convict who was convicted in Stafford, Staffordshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Eliza" on 22nd September 1819, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Robert Collier, (b. 1796), aged 25, English seaman who was convicted in London, England for life for pick pocketing, transported aboard the "Countess of Harcourt" on 8th April 1821, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [13]
  • John Collier, a blacksmith, who arrived in Van Diemen’s Land (now Tasmania) sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • Mr. Henry Collier, British convict who was convicted in Middlesex, England for life, transported aboard the "Asia" on 29th September 1831, settling in New South Wales, Australia [14]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Collier 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:

Collier Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • George Collier, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • James Collier, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Robert Collier, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • George Collier, aged 34, a farm labourer, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Lady Nugent" in 1841
  • Elizabeth Collier, aged 40, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Lady Nugent" in 1841
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

West Indies Collier 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. [15]
Collier Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Joseph Collier and Ambrose Collier, who settled in Barbados in 1679

Contemporary Notables of the name Collier (post 1700) +

  • Mark H. Collier (d. 2022), American religious scholar and academic administrator, 7th President of Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio, from 1999 to 2006
  • Donald Mounger Collier (1928-2021), American actor best known for Western films and television shows such as The High Chaparral, Bonanza, Gunsmoke, and Outlaws as Marshal Will Foreman
  • Brigadier-General William Albert Collier (1896-1984), American Chief of Staff US European Theater of Operations (1944-1946) [16]
  • Lieutenant-General John Howell Collier (1898-1980), American Commanding General 4th Army (1955-1958) [17]
  • Constance Collier (1878-1955), British-born American film actress
  • Christopher Collier (b. 1930), American historian and author
  • John Collier (1708-1786), English-born American short story writer and novelist
  • Barron Gift Collier (1873-1939), American advertising entrepreneur
  • Lucille Ann Collier (1923-2004), birth name of Ann Miller, American singer, dancer and actress
  • Jacob Collier (b. 1994), English two-time Grammy-winner singer, arranger, composer, and multi-instrumentalist
  • ... (Another 10 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMAS Sydney II
  • Mr. Richard Thomas Collier (1909-1941), Australian Acting Petty Officer from Collingwood, Victoria, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [18]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. William A Collier, British Leading Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [19]
  • Mr. James Collier, British Musician, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [19]
  • Mr. Harry Collier, British Able Bodied Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [19]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Jim Collier, British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [20]
Senghenydd colliery
  • Mr. Thomas John Joe Collier (b. 1868), Welsh coal miner from Cardiff, Wales who was working at the Senghenydd colliery when there was an explosion on the 14th October 1913; he died
USS Arizona
  • Mr. John Collier, American Fireman Second Class from Oregon, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [21]
  • Mr. Linald Long Collier Jr., American Baker Third Class from Texas, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [21]


The Collier Motto +

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: Nemo sine cruce beatus
Motto Translation: No one is happy but by the cross.


  1. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  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. ^ http://www.journaldesfemmes.com/nom-de-famille/nom/
  7. ^ https://forebears.io/australia/surnames
  8. ^ https://forebears.io/new-zealand/surnames
  9. ^ https://www.surnamemap.eu/unitedkingdom/surnames_ranking.php?p=10
  10. ^ 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)
  11. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th July 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/atlas
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 10th February 2022). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/eliza
  13. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 24th March 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/countess-of-harcourt
  14. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 12th January 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1831
  15. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  16. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2011, November 3) William Collier. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Collier/William_Albert/USA.html
  17. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2011, November 3) John Collier. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Collier/John_Howell/USA.html
  18. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  19. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  20. ^ 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
  21. ^ Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from http://pearl-harbor.com/arizona/casualtylist.html


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