Nielson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient Scottish name Nielson was first used by the Strathclyde-Briton people of the Scottish/English Borderlands. The original bearer of the name lived in Ayrshire. The Nielson family name is also a Scottish patronymic name created from the personal name Neill. It is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic Mac Néill meaning "descendant, or son of Niall."

Early Origins of the Nielson family

The surname Nielson was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire, where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Scotland to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

Early History of the Nielson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Nielson research. Another 90 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1474 and 1654 are included under the topic Early Nielson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Nielson Spelling Variations

The many spelling variations in Medieval Scottish names result from the fact that scribes in that era spelled words according to sound. Translation too, was an undeveloped science, and many names were altered into complete obscurity. Over the years Nielson has been spelled Neilson, Nielson, Nilson, Nylson and others.

Early Notables of the Nielson family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Nielson family to Ireland

Some of the Nielson 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 Nielson migration to the United States +

To escape the uncertainties and discrimination faced in Scotland, many decided to head out for North America. Once they arrived, many Scots fought with relish in the American War of Independence; some went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. Many ancestors of these Scots have recovered their lost national heritage in the 20th century through Clan organizations and Scottish historical societies. Among the settlers to North America were:

Nielson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Hugh Nielson, who landed in America in 1801 [1]
  • James Nielson, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811 [1]
  • Eliza' h Nielson, who landed in New York, NY in 1811 [1]
  • Eliza'h Nielson, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811 [1]
  • Johnas Nielson, aged 33, who landed in New York, NY in 1836 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Nielson Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Paul Knud Ulrick Nielson, who landed in Alabama in 1919 [1]

New Zealand Nielson migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Nielson Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • A. Nielson, British settler travelling from Plymouth with family aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th March 1858 [2]
  • Miss A. M. Nielson, British settler travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th March 1858 [2]
  • Mr. R. Nielson, British settler travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th March 1858 [2]
  • Mr. George Nielson, (b. 1863), aged 11 months, British settler travelling aboard the ship "Amoor" arriving in Lyttleton, South Island, New Zealand on 1st July 1864 [2]
  • Mrs. Marion Nielson, (b. 1831), aged 33, British settler travelling aboard the ship "Amoor" arriving in Lyttleton, South Island, New Zealand on 1st July 1864 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Nielson (post 1700) +

  • Howard Curtis Nielson (1924-2020), American politician, Member of the Utah Senate (1997-2000)
  • Rob Roy Nielson, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Presidential Elector for California, 1952 [3]
  • N. P. Nielson (d. 1957), American Republican politician, Idaho State Auditor, 1947-57 [3]
  • Minnie Jean Nielson, American Republican politician, North Dakota Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1919-26; Delegate to Republican National Convention from North Dakota, 1920 [3]
  • L. P. Nielson, American politician, Member of South Dakota State House of Representatives 58th District, 1923-26 [3]
  • Joseph L. Nielson, American Republican politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Salem; Elected 1940 [3]
  • James P. Nielson, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Illinois, 1940 [3]
  • Eldon D. Nielson, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from North Carolina, 1964 [3]
  • Edna M. Nielson, American politician, Candidate for Presidential Elector for Michigan, 1972 [3]
  • Donald C. Nielson, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Missouri, 1952 [3]
  • ... (Another 4 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Nielson Motto +

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: His regi servitium
Motto Translation: With these we render service to the king.


Suggested Readings for the name Nielson +

  • 3621 Our Norwegian Forefathers and Their American Descendants by Ruby Sather Freid.

  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  3. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 11) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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