Show ContentsJonson History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Jonson reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Jonson family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Jonson is based on the given name John and the name literally means "son of John." The given name John is derived from the Hebrew name Johanan, which means Jehovah has favored. The name was extremely popular in the Middle Ages as a result of the numerous connections between the name John and the Christian Church.

Early Origins of the Jonson family

The surname Jonson was first found in Lincolnshire, where many of the ancient and leading houses of the family name claim descent originally from the house of FitzJohn in Normandy, particularly that of one of the leading branches and oldest, the Johnsons of Ayscough-Fee. [1]

Later, the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list many of the name: Willelmus Joneson; Willelmus Johnson, 1379; Robertus Johanson; Juliana Jonesson; Ricardus Joneson; and Robertas Jonson. [2]

Early History of the Jonson family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jonson research. Another 82 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1375, 1503, 1572, 1637, 1629, 1675, 1644, 1713, 1680, 1689, 1659, 1719, 1689, 1719, 1688, 1775, 1682, 1735, 1717, 1719, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Jonson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jonson Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Jonson are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Jonson include Johnson, Joneson, Jonson, Joynson and others.

Early Notables of the Jonson family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Benjamin Jonson (1572-1637), an English playwright, poet, actor, and literary critic; Daniel Johnson (1629-1675), an English buccaneer born in Bristol, who sailed against the Spanish during the late 17th century becoming known among the Spanish as "Johnson the Terror"; Sir Nathaniel Johnson (1644-1713), an English soldier and a Member of Parliament for Newcastle-upon-Tyne (1680-1689); Sir Henry Johnson...
Another 64 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jonson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jonson Ranking

In the United States, the name Jonson is the 12,198th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [3]

Ireland Migration of the Jonson family to Ireland

Some of the Jonson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 76 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Jonson migration to the United States +

Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Jonson, or a variant listed above:

Jonson Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Johan Jonson, who arrived in Delaware in 1649 [4]
  • Jons Jonson, who landed in Delaware in 1655 [4]
  • Carol Jonson, who arrived in Delaware in 1655 [4]
Jonson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Peter Jonson, who arrived in Savanna(h), Georgia in 1829 [4]
  • Jacob Jonson, aged 22, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1833 [4]
  • Sven Jonson, who landed in Colorado in 1881 [4]

Australia Jonson migration to Australia +

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

Jonson Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Jonson, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "John Woodall" in 1849 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Jonson (post 1700) +

  • Charles Raymond Jonson (1891-1982), American Modernist painter, known for his paintings of the American Southwest
  • Mattias Jonson (b. 1974), Swedish former professional football player
  • Halvar C. Jonson (b. 1941), Canadian former teacher, high school principal and politician, Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta (1982-2004)
  • Gail Michelle Jonson (b. 1965), New Zealand former medley and butterfly swimmer at the 1982 Commonwealth Games and the 1984 Summer Olympics
  • Fredric Jonson (b. 1987), Swedish footballer who plays for IF Brommapojkarna

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  4. 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)
  5. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) JOHN WOODALL 1849. Retrieved from on Facebook