Show ContentsDixson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The saga of the Dixson family name begins among the people of an ancient Scottish tribe called the Picts. The Dixson name is derived from son of Dick which is a derivative of the personal name Richard. [1]

Early Origins of the Dixson family

The surname Dixson was first found in Kirkcudbrightshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Chille Chuithbheirt), part of the present day Council Area of Dumfries and Galloway, former county in Southwestern Scotland, where they held a family seat from early times. They were descended from the ancient Pictish Clan Keith, and the first Dickson was son of Richard Keith, son of the great Marischal of Scotland, who died in 1249, and Margaret daughter of the third Lord Douglas. Hence the Clan has always claimed to be followers of the Douglas Clan.

"In Scotland it has been variously written at different periods, as Dicson, Dykson, Dikson, Diksoun, Diksoune, Dixson, and Dickson. They are descended from one Richard Keith, said to be a son of the family of Keith, earls-marshal of Scotland, and in proof thereof they carry in their anna the chief of Keith Mareschal. This Richard was commonly called Dick, and his sons, with the carelessess of that age, were styled 'Dickson.'" [2]

This was a "Border surname. Thom or Thomas Dicson was the faithful follower of the Douglas in the surprise and capture of Castle Douglas on Palm Sunday, 1307. William Dicsoun witnessed a charter by John Skinner, burgess of Inverness, c. 1360, and William Dicson or Dicsoun appears as bailie of Aberdeen in 1398. Andrew Dicsoun held a land in Edinburgh, 1400, Henry Dikson, Scotsman, had a safe conduct into England in 1426 and William Dicson, Scotsman, had the same in 1445, and James Dekyson or Dekysoun was rector of Kirknutho, 1472, and prebendary of Guthre, 1474." [3]

Early History of the Dixson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dixson research. Another 379 words (27 lines of text) covering the years 1307, 1471, 1479, 1702, 1471, 1472, 1479, 1513, 1527, 1606, 1721, 1481, 1513, 1473, 1457, 1488, 1567, 1567, 1607, 1505, 1515, 1616, 1488, 1712, 1724, 1647, 1527, 1695, 1583, 1663, 1583, 1715, 1698, 1688, 1635, 1638, 1680, 1729, 1660, 1630, 1666, 1797, 1617 and are included under the topic Early Dixson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dixson Spelling Variations

Repeated and inaccurate translation of Scottish names from Gaelic to English and back resulted in a wide variety of spelling variations with single names. Dixson has appeared Dixon, Dickson, Dixoun, Dikson, Dyxson, Dyckson, Dicksoun, Dicson and many more.

Early Notables of the Dixson family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was David Dickson or Dick (1583-1663), Scottish theologian, born in Glasgow. He "was the only son of John Dick or Dickson, a wealthy merchant in the Trongate of Glasgow, whose father was an old feuar of some lands called the Kirk of Muir, in the parish of St. Ninians, Stirlingshire. He was born in Glasgow about 1583, and educated at the university, where he graduated M.A., and was appointed one of the regents or professors of philosophy." [4] John Dixon (d. 1715), was an English miniature...
Another 92 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dixson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dixson Ranking

In the United States, the name Dixson is the 7,913rd most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [5]

Ireland Migration of the Dixson family to Ireland

Some of the Dixson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 154 words (11 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Dixson migration to the United States +

Many Scottish families suffered enormous hardships and were compelled to leave their country of birth. They traveled to Ireland and Australia, but mostly to the colonies of North America, where many found the freedom and opportunity they sought. It was not without a fight, though, as many were forced to stand up and defend their freedom in the American War of Independence. The ancestors of these Scots abroad have rediscovered their heritage in the last century through the Clan societies and other organizations that have sprung up across North America. Immigration and passenger ship lists show some important early immigrants bearing the name Dixson:

Dixson Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Rachell Dixson, who landed in America in 1637 [6]
  • Miss Rachell Dixson, British settler traveling aboard the ship "Mary Anne" arriving in New England in 1637 grand daughter of Margaret Neave [7]
  • Nicholas Dixson, who arrived in Virginia in 1646 [6]
  • William Dixson, who landed in Maryland in 1675-1676 [6]
Dixson Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Nalson Dixson, who landed in Virginia in 1703 [6]
  • Anne Dixson, who arrived in Virginia in 1714 [6]
  • Eliza Dixson, who arrived in Virginia in 1714 [6]
Dixson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William S Dixson, who landed in America in 1811 [6]
  • Edward Dixson, aged 42, who landed in New York in 1812 [6]
  • John Dixson, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1844 [6]
  • A H Dixson, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1860 [6]

Canada Dixson migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dixson Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. John Dixson U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [8]

Contemporary Notables of the name Dixson (post 1700) +

  • Julius Dixson (1913-2004), American songwriter and record company executive
  • Robert James Dixson (1908-1963), American writer
  • Jessie Alice Celones Dixson (b. 1969), Filipino American actress, commercial model, and former beauty queen
  • W. S. Dixson, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from South Carolina, 1912 [9]
  • Myrtle Dixson, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1924 [9]
  • Jimmie Devon Dixson, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from California, 1988 [9]
  • J. E. Dixson, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from South Carolina, 1916 [9]
  • Evelyn Dixson, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1980 [9]
  • Eli Dixson, American politician, Member of Illinois State House of Representatives 27th District, 1891-93 [9]
  • Archibald Dixson, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Otsego County, 1830 [9]
  • ... (Another 4 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

The Dixson 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: Fortes Fortuna Juvat
Motto Translation: Fortune favours the Bold.

  1. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  4. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  5. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  6. 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)
  7. Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's. Retrieved October 5th 2021 from
  8. 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
  9. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 10) . Retrieved from on Facebook