I can't comment with any authority on the origin and variablity of the name. I've seen the Richmond Times Dispatch article of 1906, which claims the name to be French - Rancent or Rancine. The article goes on to state that some of the family settled in England and wrote the name Ransone or Ransome. Here in America, the spelling seems almost random until the late 19th centuryand then it seems the patterns are well established.
I reviewed your other postings regarding the Hamilton and Southworth families and from those, I can help you a little with your Ransone ancestry.
Your great grandmother, Mary Washington Hamilton married Alexander Ransone 12/24/1849 in Cumberland Co., Va. Alexander was the son of John Ransone and Nancy Maddox (they married 2/9/1810 in Cumberland Co., Va.). The family Bible of John and Nancy can be seen on-line at the Library of Virginia website. The accession # for the Bible is 21837.
Beyond John Ransone, I don't know the line, but his presence in Cumberland Co. is a "dead give-away" that he's related to the elder Ambrose Ransone whose will is dated 5/29/1761 (proved 8/23/1762)in Cumberland. This Ambrose's father is said to have been Robert Ransone, a sea captain. Robert's father was James and his father was the immigrant Peter.
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