As much as I would like to believe that Sensions were St. Johns back in jolly ol' England, I am doubtful that they were.My reason being that the info on Mary Tinker's marriage information has her husband listed as Matthias Sension-that is according to info on the net, I myself have not seen this documentation. New Windsor, Berkshire, England, is where they were married, it is also home to the St. Johns that we are hoping to prove the line of descendency to be. However those St. Johns NEVER spelled their names Sension- Oliver St. John was a contemporary to Matthias and would have been brother to him. I doubt that the brothers would have spelled their surnames differently.
Another shadow of doubt lies in the DNA testing that has been conducted. A connection has been made to a specific Aristocratic St. John Family line to the USA, that descendent is Thomas St. John, and their DNA does not match to those in the database who claim Matthias Sension to be their progenitor in a genealogical timeframe. Genetically speaking as well as through documented paper trail their exists NO evidence that Sension was once St. John. This is why there is another project going on at FTDNA that explores the alternatives to Sension.
There are several surnames that sound similar to Sension such as Saint-Jean, Sansone, Sanzone, Soenchen, Sitchin, Sintgin et al. They all at one point could be derivatives of Saint-Jean. My theory suggests that it holds its origins in Normandy (exactly like THE Saint Johns) but are all different and authentic. When one looks at the migratory patterns of the Normans in Europe these surnames exist in those places, Sicily (Sanzone, Sansone), France (Saint-Jean, De Saint John, De Sancto Johannes), Germany (Soenchen), England (Saint John, Sintgin, Sitchin, St. John, De St. John). There is also a Thomas Sansone that I once saw on the internet who was buried in England from the late 1700's if I remember correctly.Ireland also has a few St. John lines as well as Canada (Saint-Jean). The Irish are most likely Norman whereas in Canada they are most likelyFrench. All of these lines have migrated into the USA.
My hope is to find a genetic match between Sension and anyone of those and then compare notes. DNA testing is the future of genealogy there is no doubt about it. Many of us have discovered all kinds of secrets and surprises that confirm the authenticity of our paper work. I for one have found that I do not match anyone in the St. John and Sension DNA database, so therefore at some point there was an affair or an adoption and my rightful surname has yet to surface. The only way to confirm this is through DNA testing. Sir Oliver St. John too, was probably not a St. John as it has been documented that he was probably a Russell. So anyone looking to match with that line may do well to test against that particular line of Russells.