The Nanson history begins in Cornwall
, a rugged coastal region in southwestern England
. Quite distinct from Devon
, the adjoining county, Cornwall
had its own spoken language until the late 18th century. The Nanson history began here. The manner in which hereditary surnames
arose is interesting. Local
surnames were derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. Unlike most Celtic peoples, who favored patronymic
names, the Cornish predominantly used local
surnames. The Nanson family originally lived in the village of Nanfan,
. Members of the family were involved in the blacksmith
trade and prior to the 18th century often went by the occupational
from the Cornish words tren
Many used the name Trengoff of Nance.
Early Origins of the Nanson family
The surname Nanson was first found in Cornwall
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor of Nanfan some say at the time of the Norman Conquest
in 1066 by Duke William of Normandy.
Early History of the Nanson family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Nanson research.Another 179 words (13 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Nanson History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Nanson Spelling Variations
Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations
. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England
, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations
often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall
and the rest of England
. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic
language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Nanfan, Nanfant, Nantford and others.
Early Notables of the Nanson family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Nanson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Nanson family to the New World and Oceana
Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Nanson or a variant listed above:
Nanson Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Mathew Nanson, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1811 CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
Contemporary Notables of the name Nanson (post 1700)
- William Moore Bell Nanson (1880-1915), English rugby union player
- Edward John Nanson (1850-1936), English mathematician who developed Nanson's Method