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About the study
The Wonson One Name Study is a collection of all WONSON born individuals world wide. Currently it includes 953 individuals named Wonson (417 English & Australian born Wonson's & 436 American born Wonson's) with birth dates ranging from 1643 to the present day.
The goal of the Wonson One Name Study is to provide a repository for all Wonson related family history and to trace the origins of the surname to its beginings.
The surname WONSON can be described as habitational name originating from the village of WONSON, Devon England. It is believed to be derived form the Old English 'Wogan-Stane' meaning 'crooked stone'.
Habitation names are those family names which are derived from either the location of the place of residence of the initial bearer or from the name of the town or village from where they originated.
In some instances a habitation name may refer to a residence which was distinguished by a sign or engraving displayed over the front door.
History of the name
The highest incidence of the names WONSON, WONSTON, WONSTONE occurs in the parish records of Throwleigh and South Tawton with baptisms and burials dating from the mid 1600's.
Some of the earliest recordings of WONSON, WONSTON, WONSTONE in Devon include a Thomas De WONSTONE listed in the 1332 Throwleigh Lay Subsidy, a Robert WONSTON assessed to provide arms and/or armour in the 1569 South Tawton Muster Roll and a marriage of a Henery WONSON at Throwleigh in 1735.
Though originating in Devon, WONSON is still a relatively rare name in England. The number of WONSON households number less then 40 in each of the census takings between 1841 and 1901.
In Australia WONSON's are found primarily in the Eastern States of Queensland, New South Wales & Victoria. The latest White Pages directory lists 50 WONSON's in New South Wales, 4 in Queensland, 4 in Victoria and 1 in South Australia.
In America the largest concentration of WONSON's can be found in Massachusetts, Florida, New Hampshire, Maryland and Maine.
Distribution of the name
From its origins in Devon the name has spread to Australia and America.
Australian WONSON's are descended from either William WONSON who emigrated to Sydney, Australia in 1840 or Albert WONSON who arrived in Victoria, Australia in 1887.
The majority of American WONSON's are descended form a John WONSON (origins unknown) who arrived in Massachusetts in the early 1700's. UK shipping records indicate that a number of WONSON's may have also emigrated to the USA during the late 1800's and early 1900's from which more may be descended.
The WONSON Genealogy website & One Name study has recently been updated with 8 generations of American born WONSON's adding to the existing 7 generations of Australian born WONSON's making it the most comprehensive study of the WONSON name world wide.
The following resources are available :
- Hundreds of Obituaries & funeral notices
- Historical Documents & newspaper extracts
- UK Census indexes and images of WONSON households 1841 - 1901
- Dartmoor Family History Index
- Dartmoor & West Devon Genealogy Index
- A Guide to Dartmoor
- Rackenford Baptism Index 1813 - 1840
- Rackenford Burials Index 1800 - 1837
- Bradninch Baptism Indexes 1813 - 1839
- Bradninch Marriages Indexes 1754 - 1837
- Bradninch Burials Index 1813 - 1837
- Bickleigh (Tiverton) Baptism Index 1813 - 1839
- Bickleigh (Tiverton) Marriages Index 1754 - 1837
- Bickleigh (Tiverton) Burials Index 1800 - 1837
- NSW Pioneer Index 1788 - 1888
- NSW Federation Index 1889 - 1918
- NSW Between the Wars Index 1919 - 1945
- Campbelltown Pioneer Register
- Campbelltown District Pictorial Cemetery register
- Rookwood Cemetery Transcriptions
- The Catholic Records Index (Aust - Appin, Picton, Wollondilly)
- George Marble WONSON, his Forebears and Descendants 1716 - 1958 (USA)
- John Fletcher WONSON, his Forebears and Descendants (USA)
- The WONSON name in History by ancestry.com