Show ContentsGoslin History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's generation of the Goslin family bears a name that was brought to England by the wave of emigration that was started by the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Germanic given name Gozzelin, which is a diminutive that translates as the little god. The surname Goslin was formed in the vernacular or regional naming tradition, which is the oldest and most pervasive type of patronymic surname. According to this custom, names were originally composed of vocabulary elements from the local language. Vernacular names were widespread throughout Normandy. Accordingly, many typical English and French names are in fact, originally of Germanic origin and often have cognates in other European countries.

Early Origins of the Goslin family

The surname Goslin was first found in Jersey where the earliest on record was Robert Gosselin who was made Governor of the fortress of Mont Orgueil after saving the fort from the French.

However, Cheshire may be an early origin of the family too, as Henry Goseling was listed there in the Assize Rolls for 1260. Years later, Robert Goseling and Maud Gosselyng were both listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Cheshire in 1327. "Gosling is, no doubt, often a late development of Goslin." 1

"A family of Norman origin who have long resided in Guernsey. They claim descent from Robert Gosselin, who for eminent services in the rescue of Mont Orgueil from the French in 1339, is said to have been made governor of that fortress, and to have received from Edward III. a grant of the arms now borne by his descendants." 2

Early History of the Goslin family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Goslin research. Another 46 words (3 lines of text) covering the years 1229, 1529, 1566, 1603, 1614, 1619, 1621, 1626, 1632, 1678, 1679, 1693, 1696, 1704, 1733, 1758 and 1777 are included under the topic Early Goslin History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Goslin Spelling Variations

Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Gosselin, Goselin, Goselyn, Goslin, Gosline, Gosling, Gosslyn, Gossling, Gosselyn and many more.

Early Notables of the Goslin family

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was

  • Ralph Gosling (1693-1758), was an English topographer, youngest son of Charles Gosling, yeoman, of Stubley, in the parish of Dronfield in Derbyshire and was baptised in the parish church on 15 July 16...

Goslin Ranking

In the United States, the name Goslin is the 13,514th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. 3

Ireland Migration of the Goslin family to Ireland

Some of the Goslin family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Goslin migration to the United States +

Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World 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 stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Goslin or a variant listed above:

Goslin Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Edward Goslin, who landed in Virginia in 1664 4
  • Elizabeth Goslin, who arrived in Maryland in 1672 4
  • Mary Goslin, who arrived in Virginia in 1696 4
Goslin Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Gabriel Goslin, who landed in South Carolina in 1756 4
Goslin Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Goslin, who landed in Washington County, Pennsylvania in 1848 4

Australia Goslin migration to Australia +

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

Goslin Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Goslin, English convict from Devon, who was transported aboard the "Argyle" on March 5th, 1831, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia 5
  • Mr. Robert Goslin, British convict who was convicted in Gloucester, England for life, transported aboard the "Henry Tanner" on 27th June 1834, settling in New South Wales, Australia 6
  • Mr. James Goslin, (b. 1826), aged 16 born in Falmouth, Cornwall, UK convicted in Devon on 22nd February 1842, sentenced for 7 years for stealing satin, transported aboard the ship "Susan" in 1842 to Van Diemen's Land, Tasmania, Australia 7

Contemporary Notables of the name Goslin (post 1700) +

  • Leon Allen "Goose" Goslin (1900-1971), American Major League Baseball player
  • Charles Laforest Goslin (1932-2007), American graphic designer and professor
  • Tilford Goslin, American Democratic Party politician, Chair of Boone County Democratic Party, 1949 8
  • Henry "Harry" Goslin MC (1909-1943), English footballer
  • Bob Goslin (b. 1928), New Zealand Olympic boxer

  1. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  4. 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)
  5. State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Argyle voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1831 with 251 passengers. Retrieved from
  6. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 7th January 2020). Retrieved from
  7. Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 30th May 2018). Retrieved from
  8. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 23) . Retrieved from on Facebook