Show ContentsGleason History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

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.

Early Origins of the Gleason family

The surname Gleason was 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.

Early History of the Gleason family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gleason research. Another 103 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1597, 1677, 1617, 1621, 1624, 1627, 1634, 1635 and 1636 are included under the topic Early Gleason History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gleason Spelling Variations

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.

Early Notables of the Gleason family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family name at this time was Francis Glisson (1597-1677), a British physician, anatomist, and writer on medical subjects. He was the second son of William Glisson of Rampisham in Dorsetshire. He entered at Caius College, Cambridge, in 1617, graduated B.A. 1621, and M.A...
Another 46 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gleason Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gleason Ranking

In the United States, the name Gleason is the 1,482nd most popular surname with an estimated 19,896 people with that name. [1]

United States Gleason migration to the United States +

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 United States in the 18th Century
  • Thomas Gleason, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1762 [2]
  • John Gleason, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1766 [2]
Gleason Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Matthew Gleason, who arrived in New York in 1818 [2]
  • Daniel Gleason, who arrived in Maryland in 1844 [2]
  • Michael Gleason, who landed in Tippecanoe County, Ind in 1850 [2]
  • Charles Gleason, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [2]
  • Mr. Gleason, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Gleason migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Gleason Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Patrick Gleason, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1807
  • Thomas Gleason, who settled in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland in 1809
  • Seth Gleason, who arrived in Canada in 1830
  • Ira Gleason, who landed in Canada in 1831
  • Elijah Gleason, who arrived in Canada in 1841
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Gleason migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Gleason Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Bridget Gleason, aged 22, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Victoria Regia"

Contemporary Notables of the name Gleason (post 1700) +

  • John Herbert "Jackie" Gleason (1916-1987), American comedian and actor, most famous for his starring role in "The Honeymooners" and his role as Minnesota Fats in The Hustler (1961) and his opening line "How sweet it is!"
  • Mary Patrick Gleason (1950-2020), American film and television actress and an Emmy Award winning writer
  • Michael Gleason (1938-2016), American two-time Primetime Emmy nominated television writer and producer, known for his work on Remington Steele, Peyton Place and Diagnosis: Murder
  • Paul Xavier Gleason (1939-2006), American film and television actor, known for his roles in The Breakfast Club, Trading Places, and Die Hard
  • William J. "Kid" Gleason (1866-1933), American Major League Baseball player and manager
  • James Austin Gleason (1882-1959), American actor, active from 1914 to 1959
  • William Lansing Gleason (1899-1991), American politician, three-term Mayor of Eau Gallie, Florida (1930-1951)
  • William Gleason, Irish-born, American founder of the Gleeson Corporation in Rochester, New York, in 1865
  • Timothy Patrick Gleason (b. 1983), American professional ice hockey defenseman
  • Donald F. Gleason (1920-2008), American physician and pathologist, best known for developing the "Gleason score"
  • ... (Another 64 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. John  Gleason, Canadian resident from Nova Scotia, Canada who survived the Halifax Explosion (1917) but later died due to injuries [3]
RMS Lusitania
  • Miss Katherine Gleason, Irish 3rd Class passenger residing in Chicago, Illinois, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania (1915) and died in the sinking [4]

Suggested Readings for the name Gleason +

  • 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.

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  2. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  3. Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from
  4. Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from on Facebook