Show ContentsHarrelson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Harrelson family

The surname Harrelson was first found in Argyllshire (Gaelic erra Ghaidheal), the region of western Scotland corresponding roughly with the ancient Kingdom of Dál Riata, in the Strathclyde region of Scotland, now part of the Council Area of Argyll and Bute.

The name in Anglo Saxon, signifies "The love of the army," From Har, an army, and hold, love. 1 Hence the name is often referred to as "powerful warrior." 2

Further to the south in England, the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed: Agnes Harald, Oxfordshire; John Harald, Wiltshire; Reginald Haralt, Oxfordshire; and Roger Harold, Buckinghamshire. 3

Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls included: Robertus Harald; and Stephen Harald as holding lands there at that time. 3

Early History of the Harrelson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harrelson research. Another 75 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1566, 1626, 1685, 1799, 1825, 1834, 1851, 1881, 1883 and 1885 are included under the topic Early Harrelson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Harrelson Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Harold, Harald, Harrell, Hirrell, Hurrell and others.

Early Notables of the Harrelson family

Notable amongst the family at this time was Francis Harold, O.F.M. (died 1685), an Irish Franciscan and historical writer. He was a native of Limerick, and member of the Franciscan order, to which his uncle, Luke Wadding, was the historiographer. Harold...
Another 40 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harrelson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Harrelson Ranking

In the United States, the name Harrelson is the 5,002nd most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. 4

Ireland Migration of the Harrelson family to Ireland

Some of the Harrelson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 63 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 Harrelson migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Harrelson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • W D Harrelson, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850 5

Contemporary Notables of the name Harrelson (post 1700) +

  • Woodrow Tracy "Woody" Harrelson (b. 1961), two-time American Academy Award and seven-time Emmy Award nominated actor
  • Derrel McKinley "Bud" Harrelson (1944-2024), American professional baseball shortstop, coach, and manager who played for the New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, and Texas Rangers from 1965 to 1980
  • William H. Harrelson, the second head football coach at the Nevada State University
  • John William Harrelson (1885-1955), American educator, First Chancellor of North Carolina State University
  • Brett V. Harrelson (b. 1963), American actor, brother of Woody Harrelson
  • William "Bill" Charles Harrelson (b. 1945), American retired Major League Baseball player
  • Kenneth Smith Harrelson (b. 1941), American retired Major League Baseball first baseman and outfielder nicknamed "The Hawk"
  • Robert Harrelson, American Democratic Party politician, Member of New Mexico State Senate 16th District, 1937 6
  • Maxcy Clarence Harrelson, American politician, Member of South Carolina State Senate from Marion County, 1925-32 6
  • Lisa Harrelson, American Republican politician, Chair of Ouachita County Republican Party, 2003 6
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  2. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  3. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  5. 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)
  6. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from on Facebook