Show ContentsJans History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Jans surname is a patronymic name created from the personal name Jan, which was a Middle English variant of the name John, or as "son of Jan." [1]

Early Origins of the Jans family

The surname Jans was first found in Worcestershire, where they held a family seat from very early times. They were also found early in Cornwall, where a record in the Ministers' Accounts of the Earldom of Cornwall shows a Simon Ianes in 1297. A John Janne was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Cornwall in 1327, and a William Jan was listed in the Subsidy Rolls of Somerset in that same year. [2]

Kirby's Quest listed Robert Janes and William Janes, both in Somerset temp. 1 Edward III. [3]

Jane or Johanna (d. 1445), Queen of Scotland, "was the daughter of John Beaufort, earl of Somerset. Her mother was Margaret, daughter of Thomas Holland, second earl of Kent [q. v.], and niece of Richard II, who became after her first husband's death Duchess of Clarence. James I, King of Scotland, when a prisoner at Windsor, saw her walking in the garden of the castle, fell in love at first sight, and wrote the story of his love in the ‘Kingis Quair.’ The marriage, which suited the English rulers, and was made one of the conditions of his release, took place at St. Mary Overy Church in Southwark on 12 Feb. 1424. " [4]

Early History of the Jans family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jans research. Another 156 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1438, 1499, 1716, 1275, 1510, 1620, 1500, 1480, 1499, 1500, 1449, 1600, 1660, 1621, 1625, 1625, 1640, 1643, 1611, 1662, 1611, 1660, 1645, 1707 and 1680 are included under the topic Early Jans History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jans Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Jans family name include Janes, Jans, J'Anes, Jeanne, Jeynes, Jayne, Jane and many more.

Early Notables of the Jans family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Thomas Jane (Jan) (died 1500), English clergyman, Archdeacon of Essex (1480), Bishop of Norwich (1499-1500.) He was born at Milton Abbas, Dorsetshire, and educated at Winchester School, where he became a scholar in 1449. [4] Joseph Jane (fl. 1600-1660), controversialist, was sprung of an old family which had long been influential in Liskeard, Cornwall. His father was mayor there in 1621, and in 1625 Jane represented the borough in parliament. In 1625 he was himself mayor of Liskeard, and...
Another 86 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jans Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jans Ranking

In Netherlands, the name Jans is the 512nd most popular surname with an estimated 3,422 people with that name. [5]

United States Jans migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Jans family to immigrate North America:

Jans Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Gillis Jans, aged 41, who landed in New York in 1627 [6]
  • Annetje Jans, who arrived in New York, NY in 1630 [6]
  • Claes Jans, aged 33, who arrived in New York in 1636 [6]
  • Hester Jans, who arrived in New Netherland(s) in 1637 [6]
  • Geertje Jans, who landed in New Netherland(s) in 1639 [6]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Jans Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Wilhelm Jans, who settled in New York in 1738, at the age of 24
  • Wilhelm Jans, aged 24, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1738 [6]
Jans Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Heinrich Jans, who landed in New York, NY in 1850 [6]
  • Heinrich Jans, who sailed to New York in 1850
  • B Jans, aged 31, who arrived in New York, NY in 1850 [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Jans (post 1700) +

  • Tom Jans (1948-1984), American folk singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • Melanie Jans (b. 1973), Canadian professional female squash player
  • Lies Jans (b. 1974), Belgian politician, Member of the Flemish Parliament (2009-)
  • Laurent Jans (b. 1992), Luxembourg international footballer
  • Jan Jans (b. 1954), Dutch theologian
  • Jans Rautenbach (b. 1936), South African screenwriter, film producer and director

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  4. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  5. "Most Common Last Names in Netherlands." Forebears,
  6. 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) on Facebook