Gilbertson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

From the proud Boernician clans of the Scottish-English border region comes the name Gilbertson. It is derived from Gaelic personal names which mean son of the servant of St. Brigit. Gilbertson is a patronymic surname, which belongs to the category of hereditary surnames. This particular surname derived from the religious naming tradition. The most common form of patronymic surnames are taken from the given name of the father of the bearer. Members of the Gilbertson family settled in Peebles (now part of the Strathclyde and Border regions), prior to the Norman Conquest of England, in 1066.

Early Origins of the Gilbertson family

The surname Gilbertson was first found in Peebles, where "the early popularity of this name in Scotland was due to its having been taken up as equivalent to Gilbride. It became a favorite name in the family of the early earls of Strathern, and was a common Christian name in Galloway in the fourteenth century." [1]

Other early records include: "Johan Gilberdes sone del counte de Pebbles [who] rendered homage [to King Edward I of England in] 1296. Arbrenes in the barony of Buittle was leased to Gilbert filius Gilberti in 1376. Johannes Gilberti is mentioned in 1398, Sir William Gilbertson, a cleric, had lease of part of the church of Glenyleff, 1471." [1]

Further to the south in England, the singular name Gilbertus is listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. [2] And in Lincolnshire, Gilbertus presbiter was listed c. 1150. Later in Wiltshire, Willelmus Gilberti was found in the Curia Regis Rolls for 1202 and in Norfolk, we found, Robert Gylebert listed there in 1235. In Cambridgeshire, Robert Gilberd was listed as holding lands in 1240 and later, William Gilbert held lands in Crowland in 1290. John Gilbard was listed in the Feet of Fines for Suffolk in 1304 and Margery Gilberdes was recorded in Wiltshire in 1330. A few years later, Henry Gylbart was recorded in the Subsidy Rolls for Staffordshire in 1332. [3]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included entries for: Isolda filius Gilberti; Robert Gilbertus; and Eustace filius Gilebert. In Yorkshire, the Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Nicholas Gilberdson and Johannes Gilberd. [4]

Early History of the Gilbertson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gilbertson research. Another 173 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1495, 1552, 1482, 1471, 1329, 1541, 1562 and 1588 are included under the topic Early Gilbertson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gilbertson Spelling Variations

Spelling rules had not yet evolved in medieval Scotland, some names dating from that era often appear many different ways. Some spelling variations of Gilbertson include Gilbertson, Gilbartson, Gelbertson and others.

Early Notables of the Gilbertson family (pre 1700)

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

Gilbertson Ranking

In the United States, the name Gilbertson is the 4,693rd most popular surname with an estimated 7,461 people with that name. [5]


United States Gilbertson migration to the United States +

The Boernician-Scottish people who came to North America were often nearly penniless when they arrived, and brought very few personal effects with them. Much Scottish heritage was lost in the process, and it is only this century that highland games, Clan societies, and other patriotic Scottish organizations have helped the ancestors of Scots to rediscover their national legacy. Gilbertsons were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America:

Gilbertson Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • George Gilbertson, who landed in New England in 1733 [6]
Gilbertson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Gilbertson, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1833
Gilbertson Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Carl August Gilbertson, who arrived in Wisconsin in 1908 [6]
  • Nils Gilbertson, who arrived in Wisconsin in 1914 [6]

Australia Gilbertson migration to Australia +

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

Gilbertson Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. William Gilbertson, English convict who was convicted in Liverpool, Merseyside, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Captain Cook" on 2nd May 1833, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [7]
  • Francis Gilbertson, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cleveland" in 1839 [8]
  • Mary Gilbertson, aged 20, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Flora" [9]

New Zealand Gilbertson 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:

Gilbertson Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Margaret Gilbertson, aged 49, a nurse, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waimea" in 1876
  • Janet Gilbertson, aged 22, a servant, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waimea" in 1876
  • Agnes Gilbertson, aged 19, a servant, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waimea" in 1876

Contemporary Notables of the name Gilbertson (post 1700) +

  • Charlotte Gilbertson (b. 1922), American painter and print maker
  • David Gilbertson (b. 1949), American jurist, Chief justice of the South Dakota Supreme Court
  • Keith Gilbertson (b. 1948), American football coach
  • Harrison Gilbertson (b. 1993), Australian AFI Young Actor Award winning actor, known for Need for Speed (2014), Fallen (2016) and Beneath Hill 60 (2010)
  • Ashley Gilbertson (b. 1978), Australian award-winning photographer
  • Stan Frank Gilbertson (b. 1944), retired Canadian ice hockey player


The Gilbertson 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: Tenax propositi
Motto Translation: Firm of purpose.


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  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. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 17th December 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/captain-cook
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) CLEVELAND 1839. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1839Cleveland.htm
  9. ^ South Australian Register Monday 9th April 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Flora 1855. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/flora1855.shtml


Houseofnames.com on Facebook