Wilkerson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Wilkerson came to England with the ancestors of the Wilkerson family in the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Norman personal name Wilkins, which in turn is derived from the name William. William, which is derived from the words will, meaning resolution and helm, meaning armed. [1]

Early Origins of the Wilkerson family

The surname Wilkerson was first found in Durham where they held a family seat from early times. They were descended from Robert de Wintona, of Glamorgan, one of twelve knights who came into Glamorgan with Robert Fitzhamon, a Norman noble, in 1066. Fitzhamon was Sheriff of Kent and founder of Tewkesbury.

"This name is almost entirely confined to the northern half of England, as defined by a line drawn west from the Wash. It is best represented in Northumberland, Durham, Yorkshire, and Lancashire, and is also fairly numerous in Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire, and Cheshire. " [2]

The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Adam Wylkynson and Thomas Wylkynson. [3]

Early History of the Wilkerson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wilkerson research. Another 108 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1250, 1610, 1675, 1566, 1647, 1616, 1690, 1650, 1613 and are included under the topic Early Wilkerson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wilkerson Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Wilkerson family name include Wilkinson, Wilkisson, Wilkiesson and others.

Early Notables of the Wilkerson family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Lancelot Wilkinson of Kyo, Durham. Henry Wilkinson (1610-1675), was an English clergyman, Lady Margaret's Professor of Divinity, and member of the Westminster Assembly. He was Canon of Christ Church, Oxford, son of Henry Wilkinson (1566-1647.) Henry Wilkinson (1616-1690), was an English clergyman and academic, Principal of Magdalen...
Another 52 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wilkerson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Wilkerson family to Ireland

Some of the Wilkerson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 59 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 Wilkerson migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Wilkerson family to immigrate North America:

Wilkerson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Robert P Wilkerson, who landed in Texas in 1856 [4]
  • W C Wilkerson, who arrived in Mississippi in 1858 [4]
Wilkerson Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Lottie Alice Wilkerson, aged 29, who landed in America from Somerset, in 1904
  • B. Wilkerson, aged 58, who settled in America, in 1905
  • Carrie Wilkerson, aged 33, who immigrated to the United States, in 1908
  • Grace Wilkerson, aged 54, who landed in America, in 1912
  • Ellen Wilkerson, aged 22, who landed in America from Oldham, England, in 1913
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Wilkerson migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Wilkerson Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Robert Wilkerson U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [5]

New Zealand Wilkerson 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:

Wilkerson Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Wilkerson, aged 38, who arrived in Lyttelton, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ballochmyle" in 1874
  • Margaret Wilkerson, aged 40, who arrived in Lyttelton, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ballochmyle" in 1874

Contemporary Notables of the name Wilkerson (post 1700) +

  • Don Wilkerson (1932-1986), American soul jazz / R&B tenor saxophonist
  • Edward L. Wilkerson Jr. (b. 1953), American jazz composer, arranger, musician, and educator
  • Douglas Wilkerson (b. 1947), former American NFL football offensive lineman, who played from 1970-1984
  • Muhammad Anthony Wilkerson (b. 1989), American NFL football defensive end for the New York Jets
  • Isabel Wilkerson (b. 1961), American Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, author of The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
  • Curtis Vernon Wilkerson (b. 1961), American Major League Baseball player who played from 1983 to 1993
  • Dianne Wilkerson (b. 1955), American politician, Member of the Massachusetts Senate (1993-2008)
  • Tyler Wilkerson (b. 1988), American professional NBA basketball player
  • William Richard Wilkerson (1890-1962), American founder of the Hollywood Reporter and the Flamingo Hotel, Las Vegas
  • Gerald Eugene Wilkerson (b. 1939), American Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles
  • ... (Another 5 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Wilkerson 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: Non mihi sed tibi gloria
Motto Translation: Glory to thee, not to me.


Suggested Readings for the name Wilkerson +

  • 635 Our Wilkersons: From Burke to Rutherford to Polk, 1760-1980 by Blanche W. Culbreth.

  1. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  2. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. 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. ^ 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)
  5. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X


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