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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014

Where did the Irish Gleason family come from? What is the Irish Gleason family crest and coat of arms? When did the Gleason family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Gleason family history?

Many Irish names are merely English translations of Gaelic names. The name Gleason was a translation of the Gaelic name O Glasain or O Gliasain.

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In the Middle Ages, a name was often recorded under several different spelling variations during the life of its bearer. Literacy was rare at that time and none of the languages to be found in the British Isles had achieved any great semblance of standardization. Variations of the name Gleason found include Gleason, Gleeson, Glissane, Gleasone, Gleesone, Glissaun, Gleasaune, Glissen and many more.

First found in County Tipperary (Irish: Thiobraid Árann), established in the 13th century in South-central Ireland, in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gleason research. Another 205 words(15 lines of text) covering the years 1599 and 1677 are included under the topic Early Gleason History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 31 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gleason Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Irish emigration to North America began modestly in the late 18th century. At this time, Irish families made the journey to British North America and the United States by choice and after careful consideration: they were primarily in search of a suitably large stretch of land to call their own. This pattern would change most dramatically during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. For example, the years 1825-1845 saw approximately 450,000 heading to British North America and 400,000 to the United States, but in 1847, at the height of the famine, it is estimated that more than 104,000 Irish immigrants went to British North America and more than 119,000 to the United States. An examination of passenger and immigration lists has revealed many early immigrants bearing the name Gleason:

Gleason Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Thomas Gleason who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1762
  • Thomas Gleason, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1762
  • John Gleason, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1766

Gleason Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Matthew Gleason, who arrived in New York in 1818
  • Daniel Gleason, who arrived in Maryland in 1844
  • Michael Gleason, who landed in Tippecanoe County, Ind in 1850
  • J H Gleason, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • Mr. Gleason, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851


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  • Herbert John "Jackie" Gleason (1916-1987), American comedian and actor, most famous for his starring role in "The Honeymooners"
  • James P Gleason (b. 1921), American lawyer and politician, legislative assistant to Richard Nixon
  • Jimmy Gleason, American Indy 500 racecar driver
  • Ralph J Gleason, American jazz and pop music critic
  • Andrew Gleason, American mathematician
  • Stephen Michael "Steve" Gleason (b. 1977), American former professional NFL football safety with the New Orleans Saints, now battling Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • James Gleason, Archbishop of Adelaide in Australia


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  • Genealogy of the Descendants of Marcena Glezen of Center Lisle, Broome County, NY by J. Carver Glezen.
  • The Gleason Family from Uriah of the Fourth Generation by Ruth Marie Field.
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  1. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  2. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1970. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  3. McDonnell, Frances. Emigrants from Ireland to America 1735-1743 A Transcription of the report of the Irish House of Commons into Enforced emigration to America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1331-5).
  4. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  5. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  6. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
  7. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  8. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  9. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  10. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  11. ...

The Gleason Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Gleason Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 17 March 2014 at 08:17.

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