Frank: On the final day of the second millenium, greetings! Thanks for your response to my egregious reply to Rick Nuss. I now agree with your implicit reproach; sanity and civility are prerequisite to reasoned discourse. When I posted that message, I was obviously not having one of my better days. As to the "learned discussions" on this forum, I plead not guilty by reason of mental deficiency. I am not an authority and have never claimed to be an authority. I hope that plea will suffice when I stand before the Great Philologist of the Sky. However, there have been a number of postings to this forum which do strike me as well informed; see, e.g., Gerhard Nuss (#85) and Steven A. Taylor (#87) for "spelling of Nuss or Nuß". And for that matter--upon rereading--I think "Other Variations of Nuss" (#94. Rick Nuss) contains a lot of useful information. But we are all workers in the vineyard!
I can't offer any help on the variant spellings of the Easterly name; currently on the Brokaw forum we are involved with variant spellings of Bro(u)card.However, I note that you are looking for a possible Nuss connection to the Easterly family, circa 1765. You state that "his name was reputed to be Nuss, Nues, Neas, Ness, Nease, Neec, Neece...".Don't give up! Contrary to my earlier, all too confident assertion that "Nuss means nut" (somewhere on this forum), it is also a hypocoristic form of Denis, by apheresis ("Etymology: Nuss, Nups, Nussbaum", (#l09ff. this forum). Variant forms of this derivation--among others--Nies, Niess--seem (to my admittedly untutored eye) to be perfectly consistent with most of the spellings you cited.Nues, Neas, Ness, Nease, Neec, Neece could easily be variants of Nuss. But are you sure about Nu225! Happy New Year! The millenium will have to shift for itself! Russ Brokaw