I am pleased to see the creation of this forum. I am researching the Brinstons of Sound Island (at the north end of the Burin Peninsula, Placentia Bay) Newfoundland. In Family Names of Newfoundland E. R. Seary (1977) says BRENSON, BRINSON, BRINSTON(E) are all variants of Brimson, a surname of England, from the French place name Briencun in Normandy.
David Brimson of England who is conducting a one name study of Brimson has advised me that the UK Info Disk at www.192.com shows only one Brinston listed for the whole of England, Scotland & Wales.
I look forward to learning through this forum where the Brinstons are scattered in North America and elsewhere. If possible, I hope to sort out with other Brinston researchers in Newfoundland when the first Brinstons arrived there.