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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016


Today's generation of the Melson 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 popular Norman given name Miles.

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The surname Melson was first found in Shropshire, at Milson, a parish, in the union of Cleobury-Mortimer, part of the Overs Hunderd which dates back to the Domesday Book where is was listed as Mulstone. At that time, there was a manor, and land for 6 ploughs. It was held by Osbern fitzRichard at that time. [1] The village had 160 inhabitants in 1848 and the local church was dedicated to St. George. The name was probably derived from the Old English personal name + "tun" [2] and literally means "farmstead of a man called Myndel or Miles. Today there is also a Milson Island in New South Wales, Australia and has been established for over 100 years. Milsons Point near Sydney, Australia was named after James Milson (1785-1872), from Lincolnshire one of the earliest settlers. In New Zealand, Milson is a suburb of Palmerston North, Manawatu-Wanganui.

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Melson have been found, including Milson, Millson, Milison, Millison, Millyson, Milyson, Myllison, Mylison, Myleson, Mylleson, Mylson, Milsom, Mylsom, Milsolm, Millsolm, Melsam, Melsan, Melson, Melsom, Milsson, Melsome and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Melson research. Another 154 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1309 and 1329 are included under the topic Early Melson History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Melson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Melson were among those contributors:

Melson Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • John Melson, who arrived in Maryland in 1672

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  • Kenneth E. Melson, American chief director and head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
  • Cyrus William "C.W." Melson (1929-1981), Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives
  • Robert Melson, professor emeritus of political science and a member of the Jewish studies program at Purdue University
  • Boyd "Rainmaker" Melson, American light middleweight boxer
  • Joe Melson (b. 1935), American singer and a BMI Award–winning songwriter


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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

Other References

  1. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  2. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  3. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  4. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  5. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  7. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  10. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  11. ...

The Melson Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Melson 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 19 October 2014 at 01:54.

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