Explore the Family Name Lawson

The meaning of Lawson

1. Scottish and northern English: patronymic ‘son of Lawrence’; see Law 1. It is also found in Ireland since the 17th century. 2. Americanized form of Swedish Larsson and Danish, Norwegian or North German Larsen.

Dictionary of American Family Names, 2nd edition, © Oxford University Press, 2022.

How common is the last name Lawson in the United States?

The Lawson surname has seen a slight dip in popularity between the years 2000 to 2010, according to Decennial U.S. Census data. In 2000, Lawson was ranked 235 out of all surnames in the United States, but by 2010, it had slipped to the 256th position, a decrease of 8.94%. However, despite this drop in rank, the actual number of people with the Lawson surname grew from 115,186 in 2000 to 119,053 in 2010, an increase of 3.36%. The proportion per 100,000 people also saw a decline from 42.7 in 2000 to 40.36 in 2010, indicating a reduction of 5.48%.

Proportion per 100k42.740.36-5.48%

Race and Ethnicity of people with the last name Lawson

The Decennial U.S. Census data on the ethnic identity associated with the Lawson surname reveals some interesting trends between 2000 and 2010. The largest group identifying as Lawson is of White ethnicity, although there was a slight decrease from 76.30% to 73.84% during this period. The Black ethnicity group increased by 5.23%, from 19.71% to 20.74%. There was a notable rise in the Hispanic group, which went up by 58.27%, albeit starting from a smaller base of 1.39% in 2000 to reach 2.20% in 2010. Other groups such as those identifying as Asian/Pacific Islander, Two or more races, and American Indian and Alaskan Native have also seen increases in their percentages, showing the diverse ethnic identities that carry the Lawson surname.

Two or More Races1.67%2.15%28.74%
American Indian and Alaskan Native0.6%0.65%8.33%
Asian/Pacific Islander0.33%0.43%30.3%

Lawson ancestry composition

23andMe computes an ancestry breakdown for each customer. People may have ancestry from just one population or they may have ancestry from several populations. The most commonly-observed ancestry found in people with the surname Lawson is British & Irish, which comprises 54.3% of all ancestry found in people with the surname. The next two most common ancestries are French & German (21.4%) and Scandinavian (4.0%). Additional ancestries include Nigerian, Eastern European, Italian, Ghanaian, Liberian & Sierra Leonean, and Spanish & Portuguese.

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British & Irish54.3%
French & German21.4%

Possible origins of the surname Lawson

Your DNA provides clues about where your recent ancestors may have lived. Having many distant relatives in the same location suggests that you may all share common ancestry there. Locations with many distant relatives can also be places where people have migrated recently, such as large cities. If a large number of individuals who share your surname have distant relatives in a specific area, it could indicate a connection between your surname and that location, stemming from either recent ancestral ties or migration.

Based on 23andMe data, people with last name Lawson have recent ancestry locations all within United Kingdom.

RECENT ANCESTRY LocationPercentage
Greater London, United Kingdom88.50%
Greater Manchester, United Kingdom88.40%
Glasgow City, United Kingdom88.40%
West Midlands, United Kingdom88.10%
Merseyside, United Kingdom88.00%

What Lawson haplogroups can tell you

Haplogroups are genetic population groups that share a common ancestor on either your paternal or maternal line. These paternal and maternal haplogroups shed light on your genetic ancestry and help tell the story of your family.

The top paternal haplogroup of people with the surname Lawson is I-F2642, which is predominantly found among people with European ancestry. Haplogroup I-F2642 is descended from haplogroup I-M170. Other common haplogroups include R-P311 and I-M253, which are predominantly found among people with European and European ancestry. Other surnames with similar common haplogroups are: Kirkland, Sterling, Whitehead, Horn, Fields, Wild, Starling, Harvey, Goodwin, Anderson.

The most common maternal haplogroups of people with Lawson surname are: T2b, H, H1. These most commonly trace back to individuals of European ancestry.

lawsonPaternal Haplogroup Origins I-M170
Paternal Haplo Image

Your paternal lineage may be linked to Alexander Hamilton

Early in the morning on July 11, 1804, Aaron Burr (then Vice President of the United States) and Alexander Hamilton (founder of the U.S. Treasury) dueled on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River. This marked the culmination of a bitter personal and political rivalry between the two men. Alexander Hamilton died as a result of the duel, but his intellectual legacy survives in the founding documents of the nation he helped build. A piece of his genetic legacy survives as well: in the 21st century, genealogists documented the paternal haplogroups of dozens of Hamilton's living descendants and concluded that the Founding Father's paternal haplogroup was a branch of I-DF29.

Your maternal lineage may be linked to Marie Antoinette

Because it is so dominant in the general European population, haplogroup H also appears quite frequently in the continent's royal houses. Marie Antoinette, an Austrian Hapsburg who married into the French royal family, inherited the haplogroup from her maternal ancestors. So did Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, whose recorded genealogy traces his female line to Bavaria. Scientists also discovered that famed 16th century astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus traced his maternal lineages to haplogroup H.

Maternal Haplo Image

What do people with the surname Lawson have in common?

Spoiler alert: it's complicated. People with the same last name are usually no more genetically similar than a randomly sampled group of people from the same population. That said, people with the same surname are more likely to have similar ancestries than randomly sampled individuals. The reason is the tendency of people with similar cultural or geographical backgrounds to preferentially mate with one another. That's why people who share a surname may be more likely to share traits and tendencies in common than people within the general population. Check out the percentages below to see the prevalences of tastes, habits, and traits of people with your surname compared with prevalences among 23andMe users.



Chocolate Ice Cream

Prefers chocolate flavored ice cream over other flavors.

"Lawson" Surname 41.6%

23andMe Users 41.3%




When sounds made by others, like the sound of chewing or yawning, provoke strong emotional reactions in an individual.

"Lawson" Surname 28.9%

23andMe Users 27.9%



Sugary Drink

Drinks one or more sugary drinks per day.

"Lawson" Surname 26.7%

23andMe Users 21.1%




A severe headache characterized by intense pain, sensitivity to light and sound, and often accompanied by nausea and vomiting.

"Lawson" Surname 18.5%

23andMe Users 16.4%

Are health conditions linked to the last name Lawson?

The short answer is that, if there is an association between surname and health, it's usually more about your ancestry than your name. Individuals with a given surname are no more genetically similar than the general population but often have similar ancestries. The populations of people associated with those shared ancestries often have sets of genetic variations, also known as alleles, in common. Some of those alleles are associated with a greater likelihood of developing certain diseases.

Disease variant frequency by ancestry

Disease allele frequencies in populations associated with the surname Lawson are shown below. Important Note: not everyone with a disease allele will develop these health condition

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Y402H variant

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of irreversible vision loss among older adults. The disease results in damage to the central part of the retina (the macula), impairing vision needed for reading, driving, or even recognizing faces. The 23andMe Health + Ancestry DNA test includes the two most common variants associated with an increased risk of developing the condition: the Y402H variant in the CFH gene and the A69S variant in the ARMS2 gene. Learn more about Age-Related Macular Degeneration

British & Irish 62.1%

23andMe Users 57.2%