Elson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the Elson family goes back to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It is derived from the family living in Nottinghamshire or Wiltshire. The name could also be classified as a baptismal name as in the son of Elstan and an earlier personal name Dunstan.

Early Origins of the Elson family

The surname Elson was first found in Nottinghamshire at Elston, a small village that lies between the rivers Trent and Devon and dates back to at least the Domesday Book where it was listed as Elvestune, Eluestune and Eluestune [1] and probably meant "farmstead of a man called Eilafr" from an Old Scandinavian personal name + tun. [2] The less likely local that the name could have been derived from is Elston in Wiltshire, a hamlet in the parish of St. George which was also listed in the Domesday Book, but as Wintreburne. [1]

Important Dates for the Elson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Elson research. Another 59 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Elson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Elson Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Elson include Elston, Elstone, Elliston, Elsden, Elsdon, Elson and others.

Early Notables of the Elson family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Elson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Elson migration to the United States

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Elson or a variant listed above:

Elson Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Ann Elson, who arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1629 [3]
  • Elizabeth Elson, aged 18, who landed in Barbados in 1635 [3]
  • William Elson, who landed in Maryland in 1640 [3]
  • John Elson, who landed in Virginia in 1652 [3]
Elson Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Samuel Elson, who arrived in New England in 1707 [3]
Elson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • H Elson, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • Hugh B. Elson, aged 26, who landed in America from Manchester, in 1893
  • Benjamin Elson, aged 28, who settled in America, in 1895
Elson Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Jacob Elson, aged 26, who immigrated to America from London, in 1902
  • Berel Elson, aged 7, who landed in America from London, in 1906
  • Charles Elson, aged 48, who immigrated to the United States, in 1908
  • Anna Elson, aged 49, who landed in America, in 1908
  • Samuel Hop Elson, aged 29, who immigrated to America from Castleton, England, in 1908
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Elson migration to Australia

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

Elson Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Elson, aged 24, a postmaster, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Florentia" [4]
  • William Elson, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Florentia" in 1849 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Elson (post 1700)

  • Anita Elson (1898-1985), American dancer and singer
  • Rachel F. Elson, American journalist and managing editor at CBS MoneyWatch.com
  • Rebecca Anne Wood Elson (1960-1999), Canadian-born, American astronomer and writer
  • Andrea Elson (b. 1969), American actress
  • Geoffrey Elson (1913-1999), English cricketer
  • Richard Mark Elson (b. 1979), English writer, director and editor for film and television
  • Peter Elson (1947-1998), English science fiction illustrator
  • Jamie Elson (b. 1981), English professional golfer
  • Philip "Pip" Elson (b. 1954), English professional golfer
  • Geoffrey "Gus" Elson (1913-1999), English cricketer
  • ... (Another 5 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  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. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) FLORENTIA 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Florentia.htm
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