The Scotson name background
The name Scotson indicates 'son of Scot', an ancient first name derived from Old English"Scott" - "an Irishman" and later Gaelic speaker from Scotland. Scot and Scott are variants of the surname.
In the North-East, Gilbert Scotesson is one of the earliest references to the name in 1131, and an Alexander Scotteson is listed in 1379 in the Yorkshire Poll Tax returns, while a George Scotson was christened in St Martin's Church, Coney Street, York.
However, in the North-West a widow released her right to a Burgage in Penny Street, Lancaster to a William Scotte in c.1280. Later William, son of William Scotte married Anabel of a Burgage in Penny Street, and he was later referred to as William Scottson of Lancaster. At least eight documents between 1300 and 1393 demonstrate the name from Scotte to Scottson.
There is evidence that Scotsons had settled at Abbot Park in the Furness Fells (photo above) in mid-14th Century at the time of the Black Death. Also members of the Rawlinson family of Greenhead, who built Colton Church c.1475 fought for King Henry V at Agincourt in France on 24 October 1415 and one of the 50 archers assigned to the king was a Thomas Scotson.
Nicholas Scotson, Burges of Lancaster, was granted a lease of certain lands at Forton, south of Lancaster in 1506, and Scotsons at Abbot Park had evidently flourished as John, Richard and Christopher had each paid rent for arable land. A will left in 1584 by John Scotson, showed the Scotsons to be flourishing in Colton. From his inventory we see him to be a successful husbandman, able to pass the tenancy on to his heir, sell off the stock, lend out the proceeds, and live on the interest in his old age. The last male Scotson to have lived in the area was apparently a James Scotson b.1718 who was buried at Colton Church in 1770.
At a slightly earlier date, the Preston Quarter Sessions record: “Edmond Scotson,John Scotson and James Scotson, three strangers are come into Little Lever with an intent to settle there Contrary to the Statute in that case made and provided. The inhabitants of Little lever humbly pray the Order of this Court to bring them, the said Edmond Scotson, John Scotson and James Scotson to thair last Lagel Setelment". Obviously unwanted there, we do find an Edmund Scotson only 3 miles away living in Radcliffe, and presumably at some stage he lived at a farm that later became known as Scotson Fold. Two strong lines of descendants followed from his grandsons Thomas Scotson b.1743 and Robert Scotson b.1744 who both moved to Abram.
Presently there are less than 300 Scotson families in the world, all having a forefather listed below
Main Scotson trees and their forefathers :
Ancestor name Birth Abode Tree*
Thomas Scotson b.ca.1555 Lancaster, Lancashire Colton, Lancashire
Henrie Scotson b.1599 Lancaster, Lancashire Radcliffe
John Scotson b.ca.1680 Heapey, Lancashire Heapey-Standish
John Scotson b.ca.1700 Radcliife, Lancashire Chorley
William Scotson b.ca.1710 Kendal,Westmorland Liverpool
George Scotson b.1727 Danby Wiske, N Yorkshire N Yorkshire
William Scotson b.ca.1730 Yarm,Yorkshire Co Durham
William Scotson b.ca.1755 Liverpool Atherton
George Scotson b.1785 Bishopton, Co Durham Carlton, Yorkshire
Thomas Scotson b.1785 Yarm, Yorkshire Leeds
James Scotson b.1811 Liverpool, Lancashire Cheshire
Carl Skadsen b.ca.1840 Norway USA