Cookson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The origins of the Cookson surname date from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name originated with an early member who was a son of a cook. Further research revealed that the name is derived from the Norman French word cok, which means cook.

Early Origins of the Cookson family

The surname Cookson was first found in the West Riding of Yorkshire where they were originally from Settle. [1]

Early History of the Cookson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cookson research. Another 120 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1220, 1273, 1379, 1609, 1636, 1654, 1735, 1677, 1682, 1679, 1743 and 1704 are included under the topic Early Cookson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cookson 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. Cookson has been recorded under many different variations, including Cookson, Cuckson, Cockson, Coxon and others.

Early Notables of the Cookson family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Thomas Cookson or Coxon ( fl. 1609-1636), one of the earliest English engravers, who left a large number of portraits engraved in a dry, but neatly finished manner. [2] Another Thomas Coxon (1654-1735), was an English Jesuit, a native of the county of Durham. [2] Captain John Coxon (fl. 1677-1682), was a...
Another 54 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cookson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Cookson 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 Cookson or a variant listed above:

Cookson Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Cookson who settled in Virginia in 1774
Cookson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Craven Cookson, who settled in America in 1830
  • Craven Cookson, aged 50, who arrived in Kennebunk, Me in 1830 [3]
  • John Cookson, aged 40, who landed in Missouri in 1847 [3]
  • William Cookson, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • C. E. Cookson, aged 24, who settled in America from Glasgow, in 1896
Cookson Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Clive Cookson, aged 25, who landed in America from Oakwood, in 1904
  • Clive Cookson, aged 27, who landed in America from Newcastle, in 1906
  • Ada Maud M Cookson, aged 37, who landed in America from London, Eng, in 1906
  • Alfred Cookson, aged 22, who settled in America from Stockport, England, in 1910
  • Albert Cookson, aged 28, who landed in America from Shrewsburg, England, in 1911
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Cookson migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Cookson Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. William Cookson U.E. who settled in St. Andrews, Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1783; member of the Penobscot Association [4]

Australia Cookson migration to Australia +

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

Cookson Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Cookson, English convict who was convicted in Chester, Cheshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Baring" in December 1818, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [5]
  • Mr. John Cookson, (b. 1786), aged 32, English stone mason who was convicted in Chester, Cheshire, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Baring" in December 1818, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [5]
  • Mr. William Cookson, (b. 1792), aged 26, English stone mason who was convicted in Chester, Cheshire, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Baring" in December 1818, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, he died in 1836 [5]
  • John Cookson, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Susannah" in 1849 [6]
  • Mr. John Cookson, English convict who was convicted in Preston, Lancashire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Bangalore" on 1st January 1850, arriving in Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia [7]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Cookson 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:

Cookson Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Cookson, British settler travelling from London, UK aboard the ship "British Queen" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 30th August 1859 [8]
  • Mrs. Cookson, British settler travelling from London, UK aboard the ship "British Queen" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 30th August 1859 [8]
  • Mr. Joseph Cookson, (b. 1803), aged 56, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Roman Emperor" arriving in Lyttlelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th January 1860 [9]
  • Mrs. Sarah Cookson, (b. 1803), aged 56, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Roman Emperor" arriving in Lyttlelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th January 1860 [9]
  • Mr. Henry Cookson, (b. 1835), aged 24, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Roman Emperor" arriving in Lyttlelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th January 1860 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Cookson (post 1700) +

  • Peter Cookson (1913-1990), American film actor, best known for his collaborations with his wife, Beatrice Straight
  • Walter Stanley Cookson (1879-1948), English professional footballer who played from 1901 to 1908
  • Sam Cookson (1896-1955), English footballer who played for Manchester City (1919-1928)
  • Phil Cookson, English former professional rugby league footballer, member of the England National Team in 1975
  • Lieutenant-Commander Edgar Christopher Cookson VC DSO (b. 1883), English recipient of the Victoria Cross for his actions on the 28th September, 1915
  • Michael Brian Cookson OBE (b. 1951), English cyclist, President of the Union Cycliste Internationale (2013), President of British Cycling (1997-2013)
  • Sophie Louise Cookson (b. 1990), English actress best known for portraying secret agent Roxanne "Roxy" Morton / Lancelot Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014) and its sequel The Golden Circle (2017)
  • Roland A Cookson CBE, English Business Executive
  • Dame Catherine Ann Cookson DBE (b. 1906), née McMullen, an English novelist, the United Kingdom's most widely read novelist with sales topping 100 million
  • Professor Richard C Cookson, English Chemist and educator
  • ... (Another 4 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Halifax Explosion
  • Master Basil  Cookson (1910-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [10]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Richard Cookson, British Able Bodied Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking [11]


The Cookson 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: Nil desperandum
Motto Translation: Never despairing.


  1. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  2. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  5. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 16th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/baring
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) SUSANNAH 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Susannah.htm
  7. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 11th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/australasia
  8. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  9. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  10. ^ 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
  11. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html


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