How the name Samson originated

From father to son

In 1811 the use of a familyname became obligatory. In that year, the French government installed the civil registration. Especially in the northern and eastern part of the Netherlands this had a major impact. Contrary to the southern part of the country, in Overijssel very few people had a familyname. People were known by their fathers firstname, which was also the case for the members of the family Samson. Leeffert Hendriks, Hendrik Leefferts, Hendrik Jan Hendriksen and Mannes Hendrik Jansen were named after their father.

Named after a farm

It also appears that the people were named after the place, the farm where they lived. In the birth and marriage registers of the Dutch Protestant church in Hellendoorn for example, both the name Hendrik Leefferts and Hendrik Imhof are used. Mannes uses the name Vonkers when he marries on 11 april 1801, which was the name of the farm where he was born.
As mentioned above, in 1811 it became obligatory to bear a familyname. Mannes who married in 1801 with Derkje Gerrits took the name 'Olde Samson', i.e. the name of the farmyard where his wive was born and where they both lived at that time. On the first socalled 'minuutplan', made by the land registry around 1830, the spot of the farmyard Olde Sams can be found. On the map the farmyard 'Sams' is situated next to the 'Olde Sams'. Probably the original farmyard Sams has been divided. Thus the Olde Sams and the (new) Sams originated.

The farmyard Olde Sams nowadays doesn't exist as such anymore. Now a new house is situated on the same spot along the 'Hellendoornse weg' (see map). Also the field names 'Samshoek', 'Samsland' and 'Samskamp' refer to the Olde Sams and Sams.
In 1811 Harmannus Jansen lived on the Sams. Also Harmannus named himself after the place where he lived and registered himself at the civil registration as Harmannus Samson. All 'Samsons' who appear in the birth, marriage and/or death certificates of the civil registration in Hellendoorn in the period 1811 until 1902, 1932 and 1912 respectively, can be reduced to the two ancestors 'Mannes Olde Samson and Harmannus Samson (who did not have any direct family relation to each other).

Occurrence of names

In the early period of time, the familyname was not always written in the same way. In different documents the following names are found:
  • Olde Samson
  • Olde Sams
  • Op 't Oude Samson
  • Samsen
  • Samson

    In the death certificate of Derkje Gerrits (1847) the name Olde Samson is still used. After that, only the names Samson and Samsen are used in the masculine line.

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    last modified: december 1998.


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