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

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

Collison is an ancient Pictish-Scottish name. It is derived from son of Collie which is a diminutive of Nicholas.


Translation has done much to alter the appearance of many Scottish names. It was a haphazard process that lacked a basic system of rules. Spelling variations were a common result of this process. Collison has appeared Collison, Collisone, Colesoun, Colison, Colisone, Caullison, Cawlison, Cawllison, Colleson, Coleson, Collisoun, Collisson and many more.

First found in Aberdeenshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Obar Dheathain), a historic county, and present day Council Area of Aberdeen, located in the Grampian region of northeastern Scotland, where they held a family seat from very early times.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Collison research. Another 220 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1449, 1531, 1584, 1596, and 1674 are included under the topic Early Collison History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Collison Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Many Scots left their country to travel to the North American colonies in search of the freedom they could not find at home. Of those who survived the difficult voyage, many found the freedom they so desired. There they could choose their own beliefs and allegiances. Some became United Empire Loyalists and others fought in the American War of Independence. The Clan societies and highland games that have sprung up in the last century have allowed many of these disparate Scots to recover their collective national identity. A search of immigration and passenger ship lists revealed many early settlers bearing the Collison name:

Collison Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Miles Collison who settled in Virginia in 1639
  • Miles Collison, who landed in Virginia in 1639
  • Eliza Collison settled in Virginia in 1650
  • Eliza Collison, who landed in Virginia in 1650
  • John Collison, who arrived in Maryland in 1662

Collison Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • David Collison, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815
  • Thomas Collison, who landed in New York, NY in 1815
  • John Collison settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1848

Collison Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • Mr. John Collison U.E who settled in Matilda, Dundas County, Ontario c. 1783

Collison Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • F. O. Collison, who arrived in Victoria, British Columbia in 1862

Collison Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Thomas Collison arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Theresa" in 1847
  • George Collison, Scottish convict from Edinburgh, who was transported aboard the "Adelaide" on April 16, 1855, settling in Western Australia

Collison Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Andrew Collison, aged 33, a shoemaker, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "New Zealand" in 1842
  • Janet Collison, aged 32, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "New Zealand" in 1842


  • Darren Michael Collison (b. 1987), American professional NBA basketball point guard
  • Nicholas John "Nick" Collison (b. 1980), American professional NBA basketball player
  • Wilson Collison (1893-1941), American author and playwright from Beverly Hills, California
  • Frank Collison (b. 1950), American actor, best known for his portrayal as Horace Bing in the series Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman
  • Rev. George Collison (1772-1847), English Congregationalist and educator
  • William Henry Collison (1847-1922), Anglican missionary in British Columbia, Canada
  • Jack David Collison (b. 1988), Welsh international footballer
  • Meghan Collison (b. 1988), Canadian fashion model from Edmonton, Alberta
  • Harold Collison (1909-1995), Baron Collison, a British trade unionist
  • Levi Collison (1875-1965), English art publisher, printer and politician


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: Hoc virtutis opus
Motto Translation: This is the work of virtue.


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  1. Catholic Directory For Scotland. Glasgow: Burns Publications. Print.
  2. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  3. Warner, Philip Warner. Famous Scottish Battles. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1996. Print. (ISBN 0-76070-004-4).
  4. Prebble, John. The Highland Clearances. London: Secker & Warburg, 1963. Print.
  5. Barrow, G.W.S Ed. The Charters of David I The Written Acts of David I King of Scots, 1124-53 and of His Son Henry, Earl of Northumerland, 1139-52. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 1999. Print.
  6. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  7. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  8. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  9. Adam, Frank. Clans Septs and Regiments of the Scottish Highlands 8th Edition. London: Bacon (G.W.) & Co, 1970. Print. (ISBN 10-0717945006).
  10. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry Including American Families with British Ancestry 2 Volumes. London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  11. ...

The Collison Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Collison 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 18 February 2015 at 13:15.

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