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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the Scottish Livingston family come from? What is the Scottish Livingston family crest and coat of arms? When did the Livingston family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Livingston family history?

The Livingston surname is habitational, derived from a place named Livingstone (Levingston) in the parish of Linlithgow, West Lothian. The earliest progenitor of the Clan was Livingus, who was at least a noble. Some historians even say that he was a knight of the Hungarian court, who accompanied Margaret, wife of King Malcolm Ceanmore of Scotland, on her journey to Scotland. Other historians claim that Livingus was actually a Saxon who joined the train of Queen Margaret on her way through England and Scotland. In any case, records show he called his territories Levingestun, and that the church of "Leuiggestun," and "a half carucate of land and a toft" were granted to the Monks of Holyrood in the 12th century.


Spelling variations of this family name include: Livingston, Levinson, Livingstone, Livington, Levinston, Levingston, Lewynston, MacLeay and many more.

First found in West Lothian. From this small beginning the Clan would grow into the nobility of Scotland and achieve the Earldoms of Callander, Linlithgow and Newburgh; the viscountcies of Kilsyth, Kinnaird and Teviot and the Lordships of Livingston. Such was the power of this great Clan, that when William Douglas assumed the Regency of Scotland, from his father, the Earl of Douglas who became regent in 1437, he persuaded Lord Livingston to enter into a compact with him to become the Lieutenant of Scotland. When King James II came of age, William Douglas turned on the Livingston Clan, executed the Chief and seized many of their lands. For the next century the Livingston Clan, probably numbering over a thousand armed warriors, was a power unto itself in its home territories in Linlithgow, and they became hereditary keepers of the Royal Palace.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Livingston research. Another 387 words(28 lines of text) covering the years 1553, 1715, 1390, 1460, 1467, 1483, 1623, 1600, 1590, 1674, 1616, 1690, 1654, 1728 and 1728 are included under the topic Early Livingston History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 245 words(18 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Livingston Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Livingston family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 87 words(6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Livingston Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Robert Livingston (1654-1728), of Scottish descent, was raised in Holland before arriving in Albany in 1672, where he was a colonial politician and landowner (of Livingstone Manor), and became the secretary for Indian affairs in New York province. He was the start of a line of American statesmen, diplomats, and jurists, including his son Phillip Livingston (1716-1778) of New York, NY a signer of the American Declaration of Independence
  • Robert Livingston, who arrived in Albany, NY in 1673

Livingston Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Donald Livingston, who settled in New York in 1739 with his wife Isabel and two sons John and Duncan
  • Alexander Livingston, who landed in Virginia in 1754
  • William Livingston, who came to Virginia in 1772
  • Isaac Livingston, who landed in South Carolina in 1772
  • George Livingston, a 22-year-old mason who sailed aboard the "Gale" in 1774, bound for New York, NY

Livingston Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Joseph Livingston, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1806
  • Gordon Livingston, aged 21, arrived in South Carolina in 1812
  • Robert Y Livingston, who landed in Charleston, South Carolina in 1813
  • Hugh Livingston, who settled in Charleston in 1820
  • Henry Livingston, who landed in New York in 1822

Livingston Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Jacob Livingston, who landed in Mississippi in 1900
  • Robert F Livingston, who arrived in Arkansas in 1901

Livingston Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Dond Livingston, who arrived in Canada in 1812
  • Dond, Livingston Jr., who arrived in Canada in 1812
  • Miles Livingston, who landed in Canada in 1812
  • Donald Livingston, who landed in Canada in 1817
  • Robert Livingston, aged 40, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, NB aboard the ship "Neptune" in 1833

Livingston Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • John Livingston arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Canton" in 1846
  • Duncan Livingston, aged 41, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1851
  • Christina Livingston, aged 25, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1851
  • Bell Livingston, aged 21, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1851
  • Malcolm Livingston, aged 17, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1851

Livingston Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • David Livingston, aged 24, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "Bombay" in 1842
  • James Livingston, aged 42, a farm labourer, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "Mariner" in 1849
  • Mary Livingston, aged 39, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "Mariner" in 1849
  • James Livingston, aged 10, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "Mariner" in 1849
  • John Livingston, aged 7, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "Mariner" in 1849


  • Edward Livingston (1764-1836), American jurist and statesman, US Secretary of State, was one of the great legal reformers of the 19th century
  • Philip Livingston (1716-1778), American signer of Declaration of Independence
  • Edward Livingston (1796-1840), American politician, Speaker of the New York State Assembly (1837)
  • Edward Philip Livingston (1779-1843), American politician, New York Lieutenant Governor
  • Henry Brockholst Livingston (1757-1823), U.S. Supreme Court Justice
  • Henry Walter Livingston (1768-1810), United States Representative from New York
  • Peter R. Livingston (1766-1847), Acting New York Lieutenant Governor
  • Robert Livingston (1708-1790), the third Lord of Livingston Manor
  • Ronald Joseph "Ron" Livingston (b. 1967), American actor
  • Shaun Livingston (b. 1985), American professional basketball player



  • A Biographical History of Clermont, or Livingston Manor by Thomas Streatfeild Clarkson.

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: Si je puis
Motto Translation: If I can.


Livingston Clan Badge
Livingston Clan Badge

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A clan is a social group made up of a number of distinct branch-families that actually descended from, or accepted themselves as descendants of, a common ancestor. The word clan means simply children. The idea of the clan as a community is necessarily based around this idea of heredity and is most often ruled according to a patriarchal structure. For instance, the clan chief represented the hereditary "parent" of the entire clan. The most prominent example of this form of society is the Scottish Clan system...


Septs of the Distinguished Name Livingston
Leffingston, Leffington, Leffinson, Leffinston, Lefingston, Lefington, Lefinson, Lefinston, Leuynston, Levingstolm, Levingstom, Levingstomb, Levingstome, Levingston, Levingstone, Levingstoom, Levingstown, Levingstum, Levingstume, Levinson, Levinston, Lewynston, Livingstolm, Livingstom, Livingstomb, Livingstome, Livingston, Livingstone, Livingstoom, Livingstown, Livingstum, Livingstume, Livington, Livinson, Livinston, Llewynston, Lovingstolm, Lovingstom, Lovingstomb, Lovingstome, Lovingston, Lovingstone, Lovingstoom, Lovingstown, Lovingstum, Lovingstume, Lovington, Lovinson, Lovinston, Lyvingstolm and more.


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  1. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  2. Fairbairn,. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  3. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and David Hicks. The Highland Clans The Dynastic Origins, Cheifs and Background of the Clans. New York: C.N. Potter, 1968. Print.
  4. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  5. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Martine, Roddy, Roderick Martine and Don Pottinger. Scottish Clan and Family Names Their Arms, Origins and Tartans. Edinburgh: Mainstream, 1992. Print.
  7. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry Including American Families with British Ancestry 2 Volumes. London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  11. ...

The Livingston Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Livingston Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 13 March 2015 at 18:56.

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