When Hon. Robert Ruffin Collier was born on 16 October 1804, in Petersburg, Dinwiddie, Virginia, United States, his father, CPT Nathaniel Collier, was 29 and his mother, Sarah "Sally" Williamson, was 24. He had at least 8 sons and 6 daughters with Mary Ann Davis. He died on 3 March 1870, in Petersburg, Virginia, United States, at the age of 65, and was buried in Blandford Cemetery, Petersburg, Virginia, United States.
English: from Middle English colier, in most parts of the country ‘maker or seller of charcoal’, but in some areas (such as Bolton le Moors and Wigan, Lancashire) where coal measures were near the surface, ‘miner or seller of coal’ (in the modern sense, ‘fossil fuel’). The name was taken to Ireland from England and was first recorded there in 1305. In Petty's ‘census’ of 1659, it was recorded as a principal surname in Meath.
English: occupational name from Middle English coilour, coliour, culliour, Old French coileor, coillour ‘tax collector’. Surnames with this origin seem to have died out in Britain.
French (northern): from collier ‘collar’, a metonymic occupational name for a maker of collars.
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