Guild of One-Name Studies
One-name studies, Genealogy
Category: 2 - A study where research using core genealogical datasets and transcriptions is well under way, but currently in some countries only.
Contact: Mrs Sue McLachlan
This study has come out of many years of research done by a lot of people. My father and I started our research back in the 1970s on the Easons in Middlesbrough and the followed them back to Kent. On the way we found various other families, some of which we linked to ours, and others are sitting with their own trees. Over the years there have been many others with large input into this and I would like to thank them for their ongoing research and support. In particular, Eddy Eason, David Auger, Kendale Eason, May Newman, Eileen Eason. I know there will be more to thank over the coming years as I put this together.
I have followed the Eason name to Canada, USA, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand and have written a blog (see links below) about my passion for genealogy as well as the Easons in Kent and New Zealand.
A large proportion of data is in 2 main trees – the Kent/Middlesbrough line and the New Zealand line. Other large trees I have at the moment are in Merriott, Somerset, Whaplode Drove, Lincolnshire and Goudhurst, Kent. I am keen to see if we can link all of the trees together eventually.
I have a lot of work to do on the USA Eason lines, as my focus so far has been to get the English lines in some sort of order. My next step is to get my website up and running so the lines I do have can be put in here and be available for others to add and comment on.
I would love to collaborate with anyone wishing to add to this project so we can get a view of the Eason name all over the world and hopefully link them all in some way.
At this stage I have not added any variants. However there are a large number of different spellings and as I delve deeper, I am finding more on the Easton and Easson line in my own research.
The name Eason comes from Aythe where the first recorded spelling of the family name is that of Aythe Filius Thome which was dated Circa 1630, in the "Baillie of Stratherne". Aythe filius Thome received a charter of the lands of Fornochtis in Strathearn from Robert the Steward (later known as Robert II) around 1360. The next of the line was called Johem ayson iuuene. The surname Ayson seems to be a derivative from "Aythe's son." The spelling and pronunciation changed over time, until it reached the modern form of Eason and its variants.
There is a good explanation of this on the Esson family history site.
1392 Johem Eyson was outlawed for taking part in the killing of the Sheriff of Angus
1681 John Easson was a member of the Scottish Parliament at St Andrews
1874-1949 Herbert Lightfoot Eason - British ophthalmic surgeon and Vice Chancellor of the University of London
1881 William "Bill" Eason - Aussie Rules Footballer
1886-1956 B. Reeves Eason - American silent film director, actor and screenwriter
1910-1993 Ursula Eason - BBC radio broadcaster, television producer and administrator
1921-2005 Willie Eason - pioneering figure in the African American “Sacred Steel” guitar tradition of the House of God, Keith Dominion Holiness-Pentecostal churches
There is also Eason & Son - an Irish bookstore chain
In the 1881 census there were about 1150 Easons in England , 100 in Scotland and 30 in Wales
About 1700 were listed in the 1911 Census for England and Wales and the same number in the 1939 Register.
Approximately 27,611 people have this surname and it is the most common in the USA, although New Zealand has the highest number per population. It was listed as the 20,158th most common surname in the world on one site.
The Eason family name is found mainly in the USA, England, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and Scotland.
Farmer, Laborer and Farming were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Eason in the USA in 1880. Keeping House was also a common occupation.
Early Eason Settlers in other countries:
United States 17th century
New Zealand 19th century
Australia 19th century
Canada 19th century
The most Eason families were found in the USA in 1880. In 1840 there were 53 Eason families living in North Carolina. This was about 34% of all the recorded Eason's in the USA. North Carolina had the highest population of Eason families in 1840.
This Forebears site has an interesting map of distribution for different years for the Eason name.
I have found information from a wide range of Primary and Secondary sources including:
UK Censuses 1841-1911 and 1939 Register
US Censuses 1900-1920
Parish records and Bishops transcripts
Army Service Records
Published family trees online
Online records form Family Search, FindMyPast, Ancestry
I have had my DNA done and have been contacting others that I have found to try and get links. This is another step down the track and will be looking into this further at some stage.
Anyone interested in the Eason name is welcome to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
You can read about some of my research on my blog
Eason Genealogy Facebook Page
You may find our other Guild websites of interest: