Dessons History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Dessons was carried to England in the enormous movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Dessons family lived in Westmorland (now part of Cumbria). The family was originally from Osonvilla, near Dieppe, Normandy, and it is from the local form of this name, D'Oson, which means from Oson, that their name derives. [1]

Early Origins of the Dessons family

The surname Dessons was first found in the West Riding of Yorkshire at North Bierely, a township, in the parish and union of Bradford, wapentake of Morley. "Royds Hall [in North Bierely], which has been for many years the residence of the Dawson family, was originally built by the Rookes." [2]

Langcliffe was another ancestral seat of the family. "Langcliffe was parcel of the possessions of Sawley Abbey, and subsequently for a century and a half the property of the Dawsons, a family highly distinguished in point of alliances and personal desert. Whitaker gives a copy of verses, printed in 1690, by William Dawson, containing an account of a village destroyed by the Scots in the reign of Edward II." [2]

The name is "a north of England name, mostly found in Cumberland and Westmoreland, Durham, West Riding of Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, and Cheshire, and extending into central Scotland." [3]

The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 had many early entries of the family: Johannes Dauson; Robertus Dauson; Johanna Dowedoghter; Osbarn Daweson; and Wallerus Daweson. "In the same village occur, among a few inhabitants: Robertas Doweson; and Willelmus Daweson." [4]

Further to the north in Scotland, early record there revealed: "John Daweson was a merchant in the service of Archambaud, Earl of Douglas in 1405. John Dawson is recorded in Kethyk in 1466, and James Dawson was godson of King James IV. Duncan Dalsoun was coalman to the king in 1531. " [5]

Early History of the Dessons family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dessons research. Another 209 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1170, 1466, 1531, 1541, 1568, 1571, 1607, 1699, 1671, 1677, 1576, 1624, 1576, 1578, 1637, 1700, 1658, 1659, 1662, 1700, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Dessons History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dessons Spelling Variations

Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Dawson, Daweson and others.

Early Notables of the Dessons family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Edward Dawson or Davison (1576?-1624?), English Jesuit, the only son of respectable parents, 'connected with Sir Anthony Staunden,' was born in London in 1576 or 1578. George Dawson (1637-1700), was...
Another 38 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dessons Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Dessons family to Ireland

Some of the Dessons family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 97 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Dessons family

To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Dessons or a variant listed above: Edward Dawson who settled in Virginia in 1640; along with George in 1623; Jane in 1650; John in 1773; Richard in 1635; Robert in 1775; Thomas in 1638.



  1. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)


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