Sunday, December 4, 2011

Guild of One-Name Studies

The Guild of One-Name Studies (GONS) was started in England a number of years ago, and has steadily grown to where it is today - "the researching of all occurrences of a surname, as opposed to a particular pedigree (ancestors of one person) or descendancy (descendants of one person or couple)".

This can be the surnames that are derived from a geographical area, or from an occupation, or a patronymic-type surname, such as Johnson.

On their website, they have 7850 surnames which you can check to see if your name is there, a Member's Room which you can use when you become a member, and a webpage on which the members can give the surname that interested them, the variants of the surname, origin of the surname, the frequency of the name, data (in what countries the surname appears), DNA project, and the contact details if you want to contact them.

In Ottawa, we are are very fortunate to have a good genealogist in Elizabeth Kipp, who is the Eastern Canada Regional Representative for the Guild of One-Name Studies.

She has the latest knowledge about the one-name studies, has been to England on countless occasions, and if you have ever had the opportunity to read about her research trips to Salt Lake City, and other research facilities throughout Canada, the US and the UK, like myself, you would have to agree that she has a complete understanding of an organization such as the Guild of One-Name Studies and how they can help you to understand where your surname originated.

Elizabeth's email is She also has her own website on the Blakes at as well as a blog, English Research from Canada, at

I guess I will have to rectify the omission of my two surnames in the study because they are not in the database – BARCLAY of Scotland, and BLADES of England.

The website of the Guild of One-Name Studies is

Tomorrow's Post - New/Improved Canadian Websites and Blogs Week 14