I hope this forum will provide a focal point for exchanging information concerning this very rare and unusually spelt surname, and encourage research into its origins.
Virtually every person identified with this surname can and has been traced back to a WILLIAM PIEARS.William was born c.1765 in/near Williamsburg, in King William County, Virginia, some 10 years prior to the start of the American War of Independence.He joined the British Army (57th West Middlesex Regiment of Foot) in 1785/86 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and later settled in London, England after serving almost 30 years as a soldier.During his service he married ANN INGRAM, born c.1784 in Uxbridge, Middlesex, England.
Most of William's descendants remained in the UK and the surname PIEARS has survived there to this day.Parts of the family are known to have settled in Australia, India and South Africa.
A few isolated instances of the surname PIEARS (some earlier than 1765) have been found in other parts of the USA and UK – their relationship, if any, with William has yet to be established.
Who were WILLIAM PIEARS’ parents?This has not yet been established.Their names are needed in order to research the family further back into history.Information recently obtained may help – an ANNE PIEARS married a JOHN WOODS in Pennsylvania or Virginia, USA, perhaps between 1795 and 1800.I have yet to find this marriage.Maybe Anne and William were brother and sister.
Instances of an alternative spelling PEAIRS can be found in the USA.Although these are more numerous than PIEARS, this alternative spelling is equally unusual.Perhaps a link between these two surnames will be found.
I look forward to hearing from anyone who is connected with, or interested in the PIEARS family.