Lamberson, Lambertson and other variants

Article Covers
Worcester, Maryland, United States
Somerset, Maryland, United States
Pike, Missouri, United States
Knox, Missouri, United States
Augusta, Virginia, United States
Columbia, Pennsylvania, United States
Northumberland, Pennsylvania, United States
Northampton, Pennsylvania, United States
Smith, Tennessee, United States
Columbia, Oregon, United States
Yavapai, Arizona, United States
Sussex, New Jersey, United States
Warren, New Jersey, United States


Welcome to the Lamberson (and variants) One-name Study

Currently I am unaware of this name being used or researched in places other than the United States, but I would welcome participation from other localities if appropriate. Do you know of Lambertsons in the U.K., Australia, Norway, Nederland, Canada, Barbados, Brazil or other places? Please make an account, add your data, link it here, or leave a message for GLamberson for help. However, for now, please assume any general comments herein pertain only to the United States or North America.

Families With Available Data

Timothy Lamberson of Ohio, the Illinois Territory, and northeast Missouri : Timothy Lamberson married Rebecca Ferguson in the Illinois Territory in 1814 and moved to Pike County, Missouri, where he became the founder of a large group of Lambersons who populated northeast Missouri. (The Lambersons of western and southwestern Missouri are generally descendants of another family group for which data will be posted shortly.) This family almost universally spells the name as Lamberson.

Timothy Lamberson of Ohio, Oregon, California, and Arizona : This family's progenitor was Timothy Lamberson who married Elizabeth Mosser in Tuscarawas County, Ohio in 1809 and had a son named Timothy. Timothy Lamberson, Jr., married Sarah Strieby, moved west in stages (first settling in Iowa, later moving to Oregon and on to California and later still Arizona. Descendants of this family are spread out in Oregon, Washington, California and Arizona, but I I believe this family has no living members still bearing the last name Lamberson. One notable member of this family is Governor James Douglas McKay of Oregon who was also Interior Secretary under President Eisenhower. This Timothy Lamberson could easily be the same person as the first Timothy Lamberson, but I have no actual evidence to indicate that such is the case. This family almost universally spells the name as Lamberson.

New Jersey and Pennsylvania Lamberson, Lomison, etc. Megagroup : This family is said to be made up of several brothers or other close relatives who started out in New Jersey. These families have strong Dutch seafaring traditions. This family has large groups that are unresearched (at least here). It also contains many smaller groups, still being added, whose relationships cannot as yet be exactly tied to the others but are known to be related. This group also has the largest variance in surname usage, using all known variants regularly, and often, interchangeably.

Henry Lamberson of Maryland : This is the large group of families descending from Henry Lamberson of Maryland who was said to come from England prior to 1645. This family group has used Lamberson and Lambertson as surnames but no other variants with any regularity. Large numbers of descendants are found in Indiana particularly.

Richard Lamberson of Bedford Co., PA : Richard Lamberson died in Bedford Co., PA, during "a raising" [presumably a barn raising], leaving one son, Samuel, and perhaps one daughter named Sarah (which might have instead been Samuel's young wife in 1810). His widow, Jane Lamberson, remarried, and the family moved briefly to Virginia and then on to Tuscarawas and Coshocton Counties, Ohio, within just a few short years. Samuel went into business with one of his half brothers, and his grandson became a congressman from Coshocton County, Ohio.

Conrad Lammason of Morris County, New Jersey : This is practically a stub entry for this family, as I have not yet spent any time working on this family.

Jacob Lamberson of Northumberland & Columbia Co., PA : This family has a Welsh tradition and settled in Pennsylvania and Michigan. The Michiganders mixed the use of Lamberson and Lomison variants, while the ones who were initially in Pennsylvania largely stuck with the use of Lamberson as their surname.

Supplemental Families

These families named Lamberton are noted because of their proximity to some of the Lambertson families, as they sometimes were confused in public records due to the close spelling of their names. These families are both Scottish, hovever, and not among those usually considered Lamberson variants. Surprisingly, the Lambert and Lamberton families have no connection to those using the Lamberson surname and its variants in modern times. That is, there is no known example of the names Lambert and Lamberton being used interchangeably or transitionally with the name Lamberson and its variants. Lamberson is a patronymic name, however, so this rule of thumb is bound to have exceptions should one go far enough back in history that patronymic naming practices were in fact used. We most all likely spring from some fellow named Lambert somewhere, be he Welsh, Norwegian, Hessian, Flemish or what have you.

Gen. James Lambertson, the Scots-Irish Revolutionary War General from Cumberland County, Pennsylvania : Often mixed up in their spelling, James Lamberton was considered a local hero during the Revolution but was not among the Lambersons.

John Lamberton, Scots-Irish of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania : This may have been a close relative of the above Gen. James Lamberton or not, but the family is yet another distinctive family of Cumberland County having origins with the Scottish Lamberton family.

I am still in the process of adding major family groups to this site to facilitate collaboration. If you have your own data, please join in by making an account, uploading or adding your data, and linking it here by editing this page.

Origins: Evidence, Traditions and Theories

So far, I have seen evidence for persons using the Lamberson surname or one of many variants having origins in Wales, the Netherlands, England, Scotland, Ireland, and Norway. (I am probably leaving something out.)

The major families researched so far show strong indication of being from the what is now the U.K. (particularly Wales and England) or the Netherlands.

DNA Study

There is a DNA Study underway which can be viewed here. So far, 5 people have taken part in the study. One person having taken part is a member of the large Maryland family of Lambertsons and Lambersons. Two are from undetermined small groups that cannot yet be tied to a particular group. Two more are from surname variants that are not routinely associated with the other surnames of this project.

Broadly, the small amount of data is already very interesting for the families commonly referred to as Lamberson families or variants thereof. The two with as-yet unidentified Lamberson ancestry past the early nineteenth century both have strong indications of being from the British Isles. One has strong matches to other surnames that are of definite Welsh origin. Perhaps the most surprising result is the one result of the Maryland family. This sole family member's testing indicates a completely different haplogroup for their origins, one of Dutch or German ancestry. Also there are several close matches to families with clearly Germanic ancestry rather than the supposed English heritage that has been believed or assumed.

Oral Traditions

There is indication of a very small family with Norwegian origins in Washington state. Some other Lambersons have Welsh and Irish traditions. The very large family using the surnames Lamberson, Lomison, Lammasson, Lamason & others who first lived in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York have a consistent and strong Dutch tradition. There is a strong English tradition among those with ties to the Marylanders. The Lambertons, not usually considered one of the surname variants but often confused with Lambertsons, are quite clearly Scottish.

Another of the traditions that have been passed down involves the seafaring habits of our ancestors. Many, many Lambersons point to their ancestors as having been mariners, sea captains, and the like.

The New Jersey families consistently have a story of Dutch or German brothers or close relatives. There is not a tradition that points to one ancestor being the immigrant for this group. However, as more has been discovered, the families once considered probably separate groups have continued to converge into one mega family to a surprising degree. Perhaps the families of New York, which have largely been neglected in this one-name study of our surname, also share origins with this New Jersey grouping or perhaps they represent one or several other, separate groups.

The Maryland family has cited references to their ancestor Henry Lambertson in the records of Accomack County, Virginia, with George Lambertson, the subject of the Longfellow poem The Phantom Ship. George Lamberton settled in the Boston area but had no known male descendants. The Lamberson families of New Jersey refer to their seafaring ancestors, and the aforementioned George Lambertson, sea captain, is known to have been involved with the founding of Philadelphia. Are these two huge families in fact one, even though their traditions on the surface are different? It is possible that both traditions are right and that these families are closely related. There is still promise in exploring extant records on both families, but DNA testing of any member of the families with New Jersey origins would be very useful at this point.