Show ContentsJellison History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The saga of the name Jellison begins among the Viking settlers who arrived in Scotland in the medieval era. The name Jellison is derived from Giles. "In the Scottish dialect jelly means worthy, upright." [1]

The surname Jellison is derived from a corruption of this personal name. Giles is derived from the Old Scandinavian personal name Gilli, which came to the British Isles with the Vikings who settled in the north of England and in Scotland in the 9th century AD. They came to the British Isles under the leadership of Sigurd the Stout after they were dispossessed of their lands by the King of Norway.

Early Origins of the Jellison family

The surname Jellison was first found in Ayrshire where early record show Thomas Jelle held a tenement in 1518. Later, William Jellie is recorded in Cruikens, parish of Carnwath, 1673 and Andrew Jellie and his wife were residents in the parish of Borgue, 1684. [2]

Further to the south in England, we found Thomas Jely listed in Essex in 1472; Robert Jely in the Subsidy Rolls for Suffolk in 1524 and John Jelleye and Richard Gellye in Surrey in 1583. [3]

Early History of the Jellison family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jellison research. Another 153 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1500, 1673, 1592, 1593, 1621, 1663 and 1665 are included under the topic Early Jellison History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jellison Spelling Variations

Contemporary spellings of ancient Scottish names often bear little resemblance to the original recorded versions. These spelling variations result from the fact that medieval scribes spelled words and names alike according to their sounds. Jellison has been spelled Jelly, Jellie, Jelley and others.

Early Notables of the Jellison family (pre 1700)

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

Jellison Ranking

In the United States, the name Jellison is the 11,052nd most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [4]

Migration of the Jellison family

The colonies on the fertile east coast of North America soon had many farms run by Scots. These hardy settlers provided a backbone for the great nations of the United States and Canada that would emerge in the next centuries. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the Scottish name Jellison or a variant listed above, including: Hugh Jelly settled in Philadelphia in 1804; James Jelly settled in New York in 1823; Thomas Jelly, his wife Mary, and son Richard and his servants, settled in Barbados in 1678.

Contemporary Notables of the name Jellison (post 1700) +

  • Joyce Angela Jellison (b. 1969), American author and Juris Doctor in New England
  • Benjamin H. Jellison (1845-1924), American soldier who fought in the American Civil War, recipient of the Medal of Honor for his heroism at the Battle of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on July 3, 1863
  • Margaret T. Jellison, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Massachusetts, 1948, 1956 [5]
  • Charles A. Jellison (1894-1963), American Republican politician, Postmaster at Bangor, Maine, 1960-63 (acting, 1960-63) [5]

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. 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)
  3. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  5. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 8) . Retrieved from on Facebook