Explore the Family Name Mason

The meaning of Mason

1. English: occupational name from Middle English masoun ‘mason, stone worker, builder in stone’ (Old Central French maçon, masson). A Middle English form machun (derived from Old French machun) gives rise to Machin and its variants. See also Mayson. Stonemasonry was a hugely important craft in the Middle Ages. 2. Italian (Veneto): variant of Masone. 3. Altered form of French Masson. 4. French: topographic name from a regional variant of maison ‘house’. History: George Mason (1725–92), the American colonial statesman who framed the Virginia Bill of Rights and Constitution, which was used as a model by Thomas Jefferson when drafting the Declaration of Independence, was a VA planter, fourth in descent from George Mason (c.1629–86), a royalist soldier of the English Civil War who had received land grants in VA. As well as being prominent in the affairs of VA, the slaveholding family also produced the first governor of MI. — Two other families of this name were among the early English settlers in America. John Mason (1586–1635) was born in King’s Lynn, Norfolk, became governor of Newfoundland in 1615, and was one of the founders of NH. His namesake, John Mason (c.1600–72), emigrated before 1633 and was one of the founders of Norwich, CT.

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

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

Based on data from the Decennial U.S. Census, the popularity of the surname Mason has seen a slight decrease in rank from 149 in the year 2000 to 166 in 2010, a change of -11.41%. However, the actual count of individuals with this surname increased by 3.04%, moving from 155,484 to 160,213 over the same period. This indicates that while the name is less common relative to other surnames, the number of people named Mason is still growing.

Proportion per 100k57.6454.31-5.78%

Race and Ethnicity of people with the last name Mason

The ethnic identity associated with the surname Mason has also evolved over time, as demonstrated by the Decennial U.S. Census data. The percentage of Masons identifying as Asian/Pacific Islander grew by 26.19% between 2000 and 2010, and those identifying as two or more races increased by 40%. The proportion of White individuals with this surname saw a small decline of 3.06%, while Hispanic representation among Masons rose by 43.45%. The group identifying as Black saw a modest growth of 2.53%, and American Indian and Alaskan Native representation rose slightly by 4.11%.

Two or More Races1.7%2.38%40%
American Indian and Alaskan Native0.73%0.76%4.11%
Asian/Pacific Islander0.42%0.53%26.19%

Mason 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 Mason is British & Irish, which comprises 51.4% of all ancestry found in people with the surname. The next two most common ancestries are French & German (22.4%) and Eastern European (4.0%). Additional ancestries include Scandinavian, Nigerian, Italian, Ashkenazi Jewish, and Spanish & Portuguese.

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British & Irish51.4%
French & German22.4%
Eastern European4.0%

Possible origins of the surname Mason

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 Mason have recent ancestry locations all within United Kingdom.

RECENT ANCESTRY LocationPercentage
Greater London, United Kingdom84.10%
Glasgow City, United Kingdom83.80%
Greater Manchester, United Kingdom83.80%
West Midlands, United Kingdom83.80%
Merseyside, United Kingdom83.60%

What Mason 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 Mason is R-P311, which is predominantly found among people with European ancestry. Haplogroup R-P311 is descended from haplogroup R-M343. Other common haplogroups include E-V13 and R-CTS241, which are predominantly found among people with European and European ancestry. Other surnames with similar common haplogroups are: Wright, Smith, Brown, Green, White, Clark, Hill, Miller, Johnson, Taylor.

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

masonPaternal Haplogroup Origins R-M343

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 Mason 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.

"Mason" Surname 41.4%

23andMe Users 41.3%




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

"Mason" Surname 26.5%

23andMe Users 27.9%



Sugary Drink

Drinks one or more sugary drinks per day.

"Mason" Surname 22.3%

23andMe Users 21.1%




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

"Mason" Surname 18.4%

23andMe Users 16.4%

Are health conditions linked to the last name Mason?

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 Mason 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%