The early history of East Riding, Yorkshire (now Humberside), England (Map) is described in detail in Pierson Millennium by RE Pierson and J Pierson. The original Anglo-Saxon inhabitants of the region, who had settled here beginning in the 5th Century, were overcome by the continuous invasions and migrations of the Danish Vikings between the late 8th to early 11th Centuries. Even to the 20th Century some Pierson families have maintained stories that their ancestors were of Viking blood, and red hair seems to be pretty common in many Pierson families. Following the Norman invasion of England in 1066, King William I (the Conqueror) continued to solidify his control of England through military campaigns. The "Harrying of the North" extended King William's control to the Scottish border and brought Yorkshire under his control about 1069. During this campaign King William commanded that "their houses and corn, with all their implements and chattels, be burnt without distinction, and great herds of cattle and beasts of burden (oxen) be butchered wherever they were found". This resulted in a cruel famine where many thousands died. The population of Yorkshire was then about 80% of Danish Viking heritage who were smallholders working land that they owned. They became freemen villagers under the new landowners from France. The 1086 Domesday Book (a very complete tax census of England's land owners) recorded about 1200 families in East Riding. William of Percy, who came from France following William's conquest of England, had become a principle tenant of central East Riding. He had over 60 properties throughout Yorkshire which had all been owned prior to 1066 by men with Viking names. These properties included the new village of Pericne (Persene - pronounced Peerson), the name which most likely means 'belonging to Percy'. Pericne was located near the River Hull, about three miles north of Beverly (Map).
Prior to 1100 most people in England had only one name. Sur-names evolved to distiguish between individuals based upon occupation, place lived, father's name, or personal characteristics. It is therefore likely that individuals with the name Pierson (et al.) originated in the vill of Pericne (aka Persene). Prior to the Peasant Revolt of 1381 migrations away from villages were restricted, by law, for villagers without the permission of the land owners. Records of some notable Piersons exist prior to 1500. In 1452 Thomas Peirson was the sheriff of Yorkshire. He died in 1490 and was interred in the nave of York Minster Church. In 1477 Nicholas Pierson, possibly the son of Thomas, was recorded as sheriff of Yorkshire. He died in 1490 and has an inscription to his memory in the church of St. Martin/St. Gregory at York. By 1600 most church parishes had begun to consistently maintain marriage records. In Yorkshire there are over 300 marriages recorded prior to 1600 involving a Pierson. This abundance of Pierson records supports the idea of Yorkshire as the origin of the Pierson name. By 1500, however, the village of Persene had ceased to exist.
A note about early English dates: Prior to 1752 the Julian calendar was in use in England and its colonies. The first day of the year in the Julian calendar was March 25. Therefore to avoid confusion, the year for dates from January 1 through March 24 will be shown as Julian/Gregorian (e.g. a parish register with the date 14 Jan 1610 will be shown as 14 Jan 1610/11).
John was born about 1517 in Yorkshire, England. He had two wives, Catherine and Elizabeth, and a son of each wife was our ancestor.
2. William Peerson (1541-1587)
William was born about 1541 in Asselby, Howden Parish, Yorkshire, England. He married Juliann Collin on 23 Jan 1562/63 in Howden, Yorkshire, England. They had 8 children. William was buried in 1587/88 in Yorkshire.
3. Thomas Pierson (1574-1617)
Thomas was born in 1574 in Asselby, Howden Parish, Yorkshire, England. He married Grace Marshall and they had 11 children. Thomas died in 1617 in Bradford, Yorkshire, England.
4. Rev. Samuel Pierson (1603-1656)
Samuel was baptised 27 Feb 1603/04 in Guiseley, Howden Parish, Yorkshire. He married Elizabeth Armitage on 19 Jan 1629/30. They settled in Dewsbury, Yorkshire where Samuel became a preacher in 1633 and vicar in 1642. They had 7 children. Samuel died in 1656 in Dewsbury, Yorkshire, England.
5. Thomas Pierson Sr. (1634-1701)
Thomas was baptised 6 August 1634 at Dewsbury. Weaver. He came to America about 1661 and married Maria Harrison on 27 November 1662 in Branford, Connecticut. In May 1666 they moved to NJ to found the town of Newark. They had 6 children. Thomas died in 1701 in Newark.
6. Samuel Pierson, Sr. (1663-1730)
Samuel was born in 1663 in Branford, Connecticut. Carpenter, Deacon. He married Mary Harrison about 1692 in Newark, NJ. They moved to Orange, NJ where they had 7 children. Samuel died 19 March 1730.
7. Joseph Pierson (1693-1759)
Joseph was born born 1693 in Essex. He married Hepzibah Camp about 1715 in Orange, Essex County, New Jersery. He was the owner of 2 mills. Joseph died 25 August 1759 in Orange.
8. Patience Pierson (1724-1791)
Patience was born 1724 in Orange. She married Joseph Pierson III about 1741. They had 9 children. She died about 1791 in Morristown, Morris County, New Jersey.
2. Thomas Pearson (1549-1583)
John was born about 1549 in Howden, Yorkshire, England. He married Elizabeth Fawne and they had 5 children. Thomas was buried on 15 February 1583/84 in Howden, Yorkshire, England.
3. Guillmus Peirson (1579-1616)
Guillmus (William) was baptised 19 September 1577 in Howden, Yorkshire, England. He married Wyborro Griggs on 25 July 1609 at Olney, Buckinghamshire, England. They had a single child before Guillmus died 28 July 1616 in Lavendon Parish, Buckinghamshire, England.
4. Henry Peirson (1615-1680)
Henry was was baptised 10 December 1615 at Olney, Buckinghamshire, England. He married Mary Fuller about 1639 in Olney, Buckinghamshire. On 10 April 1639 they departed from London aboard the ship Mayflower, arriving in Boston, Massachusetts 10 May, and settling in Lynn. In 1740 they removed to Southampton, Long Island. Henry died in Southampton in October 1680.
5. Lt. Joseph Pierson Sr. (1640-1692)
Joseph was born about 1640 in Southampton, Suffolk Co., Long Island, NY. He died on 13 Oct 1692 in Southampton, Suffolk Co., Long Island, NY. Joseph married (1) Amy Barnes on 17 Nov 1675 in Southampton. They had 6 children. Joseph married (2) Joana in Southampton.
6. Joseph Pierson Jr. (1684-1739)
Joseph was born 6 August 1684 in Southampton. Joseph married about 1706, but his wife's identity is unknown. They had 6 children. He died before 21 Jun 1739 in Southampton.
7. Joseph Pierson III (1707-1785)
Joseph was born on 3 Feb 1707/08 in Southampton. In 1739 he inherited
part of his father's estate in Southampton, then in 1741 he bought land
located about 2 miles west of Morristown, Morris County, New Jersey. Joseph
married Patience Pierson about 1741 in Morris County. They had 9 children.
He died on 9 May 1785 and was buried in Morristown.
Jonathan was born about 1754 in Morris County, NJ. He was baptised on 30 December 1754 at the 1st Presbyterian Church, Morristown. Jonathan married Sarah Ferver on 28 December 1774 at the 1st Presbyterian Church, Morristown. They had 4 children. Jonathan died on 8 September 1783 in Morristown and was buried at the 1st Presbyterian Church Cemetery, Morristown.
Keziah was born on 2 October 1779 in Morristown, Morris Co., NJ. She was baptised on 30 January 1780 in Morristown, Morris Co., NJ. Keziah married David Howell on 11 February 1800 in Chester Township, Morris County, NJ. Keziah died after 1818.
Clarinda was born on 15 June 1811 in Berkshire Valley, Jefferson Township, Morris County, New Jersey. Clarinda married Charles Millburn on 15 May 1828 in Jefferson Township, Morris County, New Jersey. Clarinda died on 25 September 1881 in Ironia, Randolf Township, Morris County, New Jersey. She was buried in Berkshire Valley Presbyterian Church Cemetery, Morris County, New Jersey.
Joseph was born on 5 May 1843 in NJ. Joseph married Landin Sophy Elsworth. Landin was born on 16 October 1848 in NJ. Joseph served in the Civil War.
Dora was born on 4 October 1877 in Dover, Morris County, New Jersey. Doraetta married John Harold Frischknecht, son of Jacob and Margaret Frischknecht, in 1896. Dora died 24 March 1969 in Keyport, Monmouth County, New Jersey.
Leon was born on 7 August 1900 in South Amboy, Middlesex County, New Jersey. Leon married (1) Marietta A. about 1930. The marriage ended in divorce. Leon married (2) Caroline Maass on 13 October 1934 at Northfield Baptist Church, Livingston, New Jersey. Leon died on 28 September 1979 in Boynton Beach, Florida.
Alice was born in 1936. She married Roger Alan Geesey on 6 September 1958. They have 3 children.
Pierson, Richard E. and Jennifer, Pierson Millennium, Heritage Books, Bowie, MD, 1997, 332 pp.
Pierson, Lizzie, Pierson Genealogical Records, Joel Munsell, Printer, Albany, New York, 1878.