Our project employs DNA analysis to better understand Bryson family history. Testing has already taken us well beyond the limits of conventional genealogy. Our first two Bryson participants from the United Kingdom have learned they are not genetically connected, yet each of them has identified previously unknown genetic cousins in North America.

After just a dozen tests we discovered there is no single Bryson family, rather there are several genetically distinct groups who share the name Bryson. Actually, that should not come as a surprise, if we recognize that several of the explanations concerning the origin of the Bryson surname may be true. We’ve also discovered that some Brysons are genetically Hoopers, probably the result of adoption.

We seek to determine just how many unique Bryson families there are, and unlock the mystery of who they are and where they came from. We’ve been joined by participants with the surname Brisson and Bryce and seek to expand the project to include related surnames such as: Brice,  Bryceson, and Brison. They are welcomed as full and equal partners as we discover if there are any genetic connections among us.  Testing has already shown possible connections between Bryson and Bryce (probability of a connection within 12 generations is 35.05%), and Bryson and Bruce (probability of a connection within 12 generations is 78.43%.)

We invite you to share in this exciting discovery.



  1. I am interested in finding our which branch of the Bryson family I am related to. My father, William Arlanda Bryson was born in Greenville SC in 1907, and he thought all of of his side of the Bryson family had lived in that area of South Carolina for several generations.

    • Betty, my family is from the Carolinas as well.
      I remember going there on a trip with my grandfather when I was 6.

  2. My father is Stanley J. Brice, son of James S. Brice, son of Denis S. Brice (b. abt 1850), son of Cornelius Brice from Donegal. That is where my information stops. James and Denis lived in the Cincinnati and Covington (KY) area.

    • Hi Kathleen

      My name is Morrison, and from Derry and Donegal there once was an O’Muirgheasain family which by Anglicization of Gaelic names branched off into the Brice (sometimes Bryson) and Morrison families, but both families are from the original O’Muirgheasain family, and so it looks as though you and I could be related if only distantly.

      Tracing your family’s history in Ireland back more than 150 or 200 years takes some luck and more than 300 hundred years is only by pure luck. The big, major families sometimes can trace their histories way back in time, but most families cannot and unfortunately the O’Muirgheasain family was one of the smaller families. However, it is known that the O’Muirgheasain family is related to the much larger Doherty family also of Derry and Donegal.

      Good to meet you, my distant cousin!

      Best regards


    • Hi, my name is Bert Foster, I am tracing my Foster line in St. Louis, Mo.. My Grandfather was William Foster (b ca 1860 d 1903) in St. Louis; the sponsors for my father Albert Foster’s baptism in 1893 were Denis and Margaret Brice. In the 1910 Census for St. Louis 3 Brice’s are listed as boarding with my grandmother Marie(Mary) Foster and living on Castleman Ave. They are James S. (23), Florence (24) and Ralph (19). In the obituary for my grandfather there is a request that papers in Covington, Ky be notified. There seem to be too many interactions between the two families for this contact to be pure coincidence. Let me know your thoughts.

  3. My g-grandfather was Frank L. Bryson, m. Bertha Austin, lived and died around Greenville and Anderson counties South Carolina. I’m looking for a tie to the Brysons’ in the area

  4. check out Bryson on google or bryson family tree or bryson, South Carolina.
    Several familie groups from South Carolina-Pendleton, Laurens, Abbeville.

  5. The Web-site is very interesting. Saint Bryces Day is the 14th November. Named after 5th Century Gaulish Saint Bricius Bishop Tours France.

  6. I recently came across a post about the results of the Bryson DNA for Elisha Levi Bryson that said, “Elisha Levi Bryson, born abt 1789, North Carolina. This line is an example of the power of DNA testing. Though his pedigree shows him to be a descendant of William Bryson (B1) there is no genetic connection. He does have a close connection to the Hooper family, and there were connections between the families. Obviously at some point there was an adoption or similar situation resulting in this branch of the family using the Bryson surname with no genetic connection to the Bryson family.”

    It is my understanding (please correct me if I am wrong) that this is based on the test of ONE person of the Elisha Levi branch?! I was hoping that the project administrator would be willing to pass along my contact information to the person that was tested. I too am a Elisha Levi Bryson descendant, however, there are no male Bryson’s in my line (I descend from Elisha’s son, William, who only had daughters.) One of my cousins on the Elisha line is checking with some of his male Bryson 1st cousins to try and encourage them to be tested. We are hoping that we can find a few more Elisha descendants to verify if Elisha is or is not a genetic Bryson – as with only one male descendant tested, how can it be determined who in that male line was the one that was not a genetic Bryson? (Again, if I am in error, PLEASE correct me, but this is how a couple of us are reading the results. If several Elisha descendants are willing and tested, then we can know FOR SURE if it was Elisha or one of his descendants that was raised as a Bryson but not biological.

    PLEASE, if you descent from Elisha Levi Bryson and have not been tested (and have a direct male Bryson line) PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get tested to help us answer this question!!

    IF you (or the admin of this page) want to contact me directly, I can be reached at: aawm720@gmail.com

    I really hope whoever was already tested would please contact me so we know which line of Elisha Levi Bryson they descend! THANK YOU!!

    Alicia Woolridge Morgason

  7. I would love to get my dad tested as we are Bryson’s from Scotland going back a long way but we don’t know which line we are on. If dad will get tested I will let you know results.
    J. Bryson

    • Good luck Jo. I think for many Brysons the key to unlocking their heritage is in Scotland, but so far we haven’t had many Scots tested. Crossing my fingers you can get your dad to be tested.

  8. Hello my name is Cassandra Bryson. I am currently waiting on my dna results. My Mom is huge on geneaology and I thought I would share this link with you guys in hope it may help anyone with answers. https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/brysonbunch/conversations/messages/1100

  9. Hi. I would love to know about my line, but most people in my family that could tell me are gone or don’t care anything about their genealogy . It is important to me as my dad has no son to carry on the name. So, my line ends with him. But I would love to know where our line starts.

    • Shawna
      DO you know which Bryson line you descend down? Did your dad have brothers?
      bonnie slaughter

  10. Hi, My brother had DNA to look at paternal DNA derivation and found that he had a blip on his gene that indicated that his paternal DNA was Pictish. Are there any other Bryson’s out there that can trace there roots to Pictish?

  11. My father was John Francis Bryson and his father was Patrick Francis Bryson his father was William Bryson who lived in Grafton NSW Australia. What else would you need to determine what branch of the Bryson family tree we belong to?

    • A male descendant of J.F. would need to be tested for a Y Chr. match. Then you could compare that resullts to the various lines which have been tested.

  12. I’d love to be included, as well as see updated info

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