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

Origins Available: Borderlands, English

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

The Lawson family name is linked to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name comes from the baptismal name Law, which was a short form of Lawrence. Baptismal names are a form of patronymic surnames, and come from religious and vernacular naming traditions. In this case, the surname Lawson was originally derived from the given name of the father of the bearer.

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Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Lawson include Lawson, Laweson and others.

First found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Lawson research. Another 261 words(19 lines of text) covering the years 1615, 1665, 1610, 1688, 1659, 1661, 1660, 1679, 1630, 1691, 1674, 1711 and are included under the topic Early Lawson History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 135 words(10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Lawson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Lawson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 107 words(8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Lawson were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Lawson Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Christopher Lawson arrived in Virginia in 1623
  • Thomas Lawson settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Christopher Lawson, who arrived in Virginia in 1623
  • Thomas Lawson, who settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Chri Lawson, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1624


Lawson Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Margt Lawson, who landed in Virginia in 1702
  • Rota Lawson, who landed in Virginia in 1703
  • Claude Lawson, who arrived in Virginia in 1705
  • Abraham Lawson, who arrived in Virginia in 1705
  • Alexander Lawson, who landed in America in 1794

Lawson Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • George Lawson, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1807
  • James Lawson, aged 33, landed in North Carolina in 1812
  • Isabella Lawson, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1812
  • Andrew Lawson, aged 26, landed in Tennessee in 1812
  • Anthony, Lawson Jr., aged 29, landed in Tennessee in 1812


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  • Ernest Lawson, American/Canadian painter and a member of The Eight
  • Eddie Lawson (b. 1958), American former four-time Grand Prix motorcycle racing World Champion
  • John Howard Lawson (1894-1977), American writer
  • Brigadier-General Laurence Augustus Lawson (1896-1951), American Commandant of the Army Air Force Training School (1942-1945)
  • Alfred William Lawson (1869-1954), American professional baseball player, pioneer in the aircraft industry, founder of the Lawson Airplane Company, creator of Lawsonomy, an early health practice that included vegetarianism
  • Andrew Cowper Lawson (1861-1952), American professor of geology at the University of California, Berkeley
  • Nigel Lawson (b. 1932), English Conservative politician
  • Cecil Gordon Lawson (1851-1882), English landscape painter
  • Hugh John Frederick Lawson (1931-2005), 6th Baron Burnham
  • Henry Lawson (1867-1922), Australian poet and short-story writer

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  • The Descendants of John Henry Lawson by Mona Gee Lawson.
  • The Lawson Golden Book by Virginia Ruth Lawson Trent.
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Leve et reluis
Motto Translation: Arise and re-illumine.

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  1. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  2. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  3. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  4. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  5. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  6. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  7. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  8. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  9. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  10. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Lawson Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Lawson 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 3 September 2014 at 07:00.

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