Dobson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Dobson has a rich and ancient history. It is an Anglo-Saxon name that was originally derived from Dob, the baptismal name meaning the son of Robert. [1]

Early Origins of the Dobson family

The surname Dobson was first found in Lancashire. The name was first found in the northern counties of England, firstly in Lancashire where they held Whitestock Hall, and by the 13th century had branched to Durham, Yorkshire, (where they held the Vicarage, near Bingley and Miss Ann Dobson was the heiress of Christopher Tancred of Wixley) and Cheshire. In 1396, Robert Johanson Dobson won a pardon in Lancashire. [2]

Early History of the Dobson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dobson research. Another 164 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1327, 1567, 1675, 1695, 1633, 1681, 1633, 1670, 1681, 1610, 1646 and are included under the topic Early Dobson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dobson Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Dobson include Dobson, Dobsons, Dobsin, Dobsan, Dobsaun, Dobsone and many more.

Early Notables of the Dobson family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include John Dobson (1633-1681), English Puritan divine, born in 1633 in Warwickshire, in which county his father was a minister. "In 1670 he was presented to the rectory of Corscombe in Dorsetshire, and about four years later to that of Cold Higham in Northamptonshire, by Sir William Farmor of Easton Neston, who had been his pupil at Magdalen College. He died in 1681 at Corscombe, where...
Another 73 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dobson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Dobson family to Ireland

Some of the Dobson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 59 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Dobson migration to the United States +

A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Dobson Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Edward Dobson, who settled in Virginia in the year 1638
  • Edward Dobson, who arrived in Virginia in 1638 [3]
  • Richard Dobson, who settled in Virginia in the year 1643
  • Richard Dobson, who landed in Virginia in 1643 [3]
  • Elizab Dobson, who arrived in Virginia in 1652 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Dobson Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Eliza Dobson, who landed in Virginia in 1700 [3]
  • Andrew Dobson, who arrived in Virginia in 1701 [3]
  • Joan Dobson, who landed in Virginia in 1705 [3]
  • Robert Dobson, who arrived in Virginia in 1705 [3]
  • Deborah Dobson, aged 2, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1745 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Dobson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Dobson, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1808 [3]
  • Peter Dobson, aged 27, who arrived in Connecticut in 1812 [3]
  • I Dobson, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1813 [3]
  • George Dobson, aged 29, who arrived in Maryland in 1813 [3]
  • James Dobson, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Dobson migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dobson Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Hannah Dobson, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • John Dobson, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Richard Dobson, aged 72, who arrived in Fort Cumberland, Nova Scotia in 1774
  • Thomas Dobson, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1774
  • Ann Dobson, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1774
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Dobson Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Dobson, who settled in Harbour Grace Parish in Newfoundland in 1823 [4]
  • Samuel Dobson was recorded in Hants Harbour in 1828
  • Thomas Dobson, aged 20, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Eweretta" in 1833
  • Miss. Jane Dobson, aged 12 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Ajax" departing from the port of Liverpool, England but died on Grosse Isle in July 1847 [5]
  • Mr. William Dobson, aged 19 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec but died on Grosse Isle in 5th July 1847 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Dobson migration to Australia +

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

Dobson Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Robert Dobson, English convict from Lancaster, who was transported aboard the "Almorah" on April 1817, settling in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Jessie Dobson, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hooghly" in 1848 [7]
  • Frederick Dobson, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Brightman" in 1850 [8]
  • Henry Dobson, aged 33, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Epaminondas" [9]
  • William Dobson, aged 27, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Sir Thomas Gresham" [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Dobson 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:

Dobson Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. William Dobson, Cornish settler travelling from Launceston aboard the ship "Will O the Wisp" arriving in New Zealand in 1852 [11]
  • Mr. William Dobson, (b. 1836), aged 22, Irish agriculturalist from Wicklow travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Zealandia" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st September 1858 [11]
  • Mrs. Kate Dobson, (b. 1838), aged 20, Irish settler from Wicklow travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Zealandia" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st September 1858 [11]
  • William Dobson, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Mermaid" in 1860
  • Benjamin Dobson, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Nimroud" in 1860
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Dobson (post 1700) +

  • Sir Christopher Martin Dobson FRS, FMEDSci (1949-2019), British Professor of Chemical and Structural Biology, Master of St. John's College in Cambridge, appointed Knight Bachelor on 8th June 2018, for services to Science and Higher Education [12]
  • Kevin Patrick Dobson (1943-2020), American film and television actor, best known for his role as Detective Bobby Crocker, in Kojak (1973–1978)
  • Richard Dobson (1942-2017), American singer-songwriter
  • Edward G. Dobson (1949-2015), Northern Irish-born, American pastor and executive for the Moral Majority
  • Dominic Dobson (b. 1957), German-born, American former CART and Craftsman Truck Series driver
  • Bridget and Jerome Dobson, American co-writers of American soap operas, best known as creators of the NBC soap opera Santa Barbara
  • Aaron Jared Dobson (b. 1991), American football wide receiver for the New England Patriots
  • John Lowry Dobson (1915-2014), American amateur astronomer, best known for the developing the eponymous Dobsonian telescope
  • Pat Dobson (1942-2006), American baseball player
  • James Dobson, American Republican politician, Presidential Elector for Pennsylvania, 1920 [13]
  • ... (Another 31 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMAS Sydney II
  • Mr. Herbert Hartfield Dobson (1918-1941), Australian Able Seaman from Mount Hawthorn, Western Australia, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [14]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. Charles W Dobson (b. 1919), English Able Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Poole, Dorsetshire, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [15]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Reginald Dobson, British Able Bodied Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking [16]
USS Arizona
  • Mr. Clarence J. Dobson, American Gunner's Mate Third Class working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he survived the sinking [17]


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  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. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  5. ^ Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 24)
  6. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Almorah voyage to New South Wales, Australia in 1817 with 180 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/almorah/1817
  7. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HOOGHLY 1848. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1848Hooghly.htm
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BRIGHTMAN 1850. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1850Brightman.htm
  9. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) EPAMINONDAS 1852. Retrieved www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/epaminondas1852.shtml
  10. ^ South Australian Register Monday 20th March 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Sir Thomas Gresham 1858. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/sirthomasgresham1858.shtml.
  11. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  12. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62310, 4 July 2019 | London Gazette, The Gazette, June 2018, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/62310/supplement/B1
  13. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 10) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  14. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  15. ^ 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
  16. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  17. ^ 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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