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Our 2,766 members have registered
2,405 study surnames with us
and a further 6,120 variant names.

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About the study

Welcome to the Horsman / Horseman One Name Study.  My name is Sue Horsman,  I live in the UK and have been researching my Family History for almost 20 years,  and have been doing a One Name Study for over 15 years.
As with most One Name Studies, my interest began with researching my own family tree. Sadly I can only trace my own direct line as far back as 1808, when John Horseman married Hannah Tiffany at Pateley Bridge in Yorkshire. However in my efforts to find John's death I started to collect all instances of the name, and soon built up comprehensive trees for the Hors(e)man families in the area.Members of the various families subsequently migrated away from Yorkshire, and I have traced many of these to their new destinations, both in the UK and overseas.
A significant number Hors(e)man families are to be found in several other areas of the country, especially London, Lancashire, Devon, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Devon and Warwickshire. I have also researched the families in these areas.
If you are a Hors(e)man or have Hors(e)man ancestry do get in touch with me. I cannot promise that I have information on your line, but will do my best to help.
I now have my own web site at 
Do have a look at it.

Variant names

The registered surname is Horsman, with the variants Horseman and Horsaman.
Whilst the surnames Horsman and Horseman occur across the country, the variant Horsaman appears to have developed in the East Riding of Yorkshire from one particular family.
Anyone using Ancestry and FMP may like to bear in mind that the surname is often mis indexed as Hars(e)man or Hers(e)man. I've submitted corrections where I have found them.

Name origin

English (Yorkshire): occupational name for a stable worker, from the Old English hors 'horse' + mann 'man'.The Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames has a different definition: Occup. or official, 'the horseman' either a mounted soldier or breeder of horses.
An alternative theory relating to the history of the name is provided by the historian, Reginald Horsman, who having researched early parish registers, suggests that the name may have derived from Ouseman, (from families living near the River Ouse); and that it gradually developed into Horsman or Horseman.

Historical occurrences of the name

Sir Thomas Horsman was born in about 1536 and died in 1610. He acquired land in Lincolnshire after the dissolution of the monasteries, although he appeared to live at the Savoy area of London. He is buried in London, but there is a large effigy to him in the church of Burton Pedwardine. This family was only continued down the female line.
Margery Horsman- was a maid of honor to Henry VIII’s first three queens and a member of the households of the last three. She may have been the 'one maiden more' who was the third of three women who supposedly made accusations against Anne Boleyn in 1536, but a report by Sir William Kingston suggests she was loyal to the queen. Margery married Sir Michael Lister of Hurstbourne, Hampshire (d.1551), as his second wife, on June 27, 1537 and with her husband served jointly as Keeper of the Queen'€™s Jewels.
*This information on Margery is courtesy of:*

Name frequency

The following figures do not take account of incorrect transcriptions, or of the fact that sometimes people spelt their names with an 'e' and sometimes without.
For a couple of years I have also shown where the highest concentrations of the combined names were to be found.
Year Horsman Horseman Horsaman Total YKS GLS MDX/LDN
1841 517 314 2 833      
1851 648 391 1 1040 51% 6% 6%
1861 732 400 17 1133      
1871 1003 390 21 1414      
1881 1059 539 9 1607 43% 6% 13%
1891 1173 619 24 1816      
1901 1352 696 26 2074      
1911 1615 638 25 2278      
2002 1748 923 10 2681  *    

*from the Office of National Statistics*

YKS = Yorkshire
GLS = Gloucestershire
MDX/LDN = Middlesex/London

Year Horsman Horseman Total
1851 37 62 99
1861 46 34 80
1871 57 138 195
1881 189 72 261
1891 271 60 331
1901 236 132 368
1911 177 83 260

Year Horsman Horseman Total
1850 126 295 421
1860 153 377 530
1870 334 405 739
1880 286 442 728
1900 625 698 1323
1910 631 777 1408
1920 833 721 1554
1930 994 767 1761
1940 678 656 1334


Distribution of the name

Please look at my website to see details of the families I have done research on


Data Collection
GRO Births               1837 - 1960
GRO Deaths             1837 - 1960
GRO Marriages       1837 - 1960
Probate (from the national probate index)     1858 - 1953
Pre 1858 Probate Records
I have an extensive collection of wills proved in the PCC, and at York; as well as many from Durham, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and other counties where the name was common|


In 2007 I set up a DNA project with Family Tree DNA and have nine members. Five of these have Yorkshire ancestors, with the others having Devon and Lincolnshire roots.

We have managed to prove that three of the Yorkshire members are connected to the same family. This is good news for the two members who were struggling with brick walls!I hope more people will join, so that we can try and identify links between the various branches of the family - both home and abroad.

If you are a male Hors(e)man, please get in touch if you would like to get involved.