My wife's uncle (uncle by marriage)was a William L Odesse. Linda, I believe Bill was a cousin of yours; As I recall you had written him requesting some information and I think we had e-mailed a few time as well.
First, there was indeed an Otis family from England; one Richard Otis who married a Susannah Starbuck - they were from Glastonbury, Somerset, England. To try and make a long story short, they eventually settled in Dover in one of several garrisons (Dover is still known as "The Garrison City") which were attacked by the Indians in retribution for years of mistreatment by one Major Waldron, the local majestrate.
The Otis garrison was burnt and several of Richard's family were killed. The remainder, as well as other families, were taken captive and brought to Canada. Some were eventually rescued, but others chose to remain in Quebec and married into French families. The name became more "French" after several generations and was/is spelt as Audesse, Odesse, Hotesse, and a few others. There are still living descendants of these original captives.
I had thought that the line of WIlliam Odesse would connect up to this one at some point, but that is not at all the case.
Linda, your line in Canada goes as far back as a Guillaume Audess who married an Archange Couture on 1.FEB.1841 in Quebec. Guillaume, however was born William Awdas in about 1811 in a small village called Fishlake in the West Riding of Yorkshire, England. He had a brother John/Jean who was also born in Fishlake. Their parents were a John Awdass and Sarah (possibly Scholes, O'Toole, Stoole) who were the immigrant ancestors. John, Sarah, and their sons William and John came to Canada - Sarah died en route aboard ship and John married a second time in Quebec to a Marguertie Noel - they had one son, Thomas Audesse.
I have not been able to find the marriqage record of John and Sarah to verify her last name.
When John married the second time, his parents are recorded as Jean Hotesse and Jean Garat "from the county of Yorkshire, England".
These two individuals were John Awdas and Jane Garret, married 26.NOV.1787 in Fishlake, Yorkshire.
So...Linda, your Odesse line is indeed ENglish, but your people are from Yorkshire. Fishlake is about 31 miles from the city of York. It has one church, St. Cuthbert's built by the Normands in the early 1100's.
There are quite a few records for the Awdas, Audas, Audus family in that area of Yorkshire. I have not been able to figure out the line further back, but the family has been in the area since at least the early 1100's.
The surname is probably derived from Aldus, Aldous (in many dialects of Brittish English, the 'l' gets pronounced like a 'w'). The name means "old house" and may be either Saxon or Scottish in origin. Fishlake is not all that far from the Scottish border.
You are welcome to e-mial me - please use my work e-mail as I'm not typically on these message boards.
Mike S Manchester, NH mszelog @ centrixbank.com(no spaces)