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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Where did the English Gatlin family come from? When did the Gatlin family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Gatlin family history?

Gatlin is an ancient Anglo-Saxon surname that came from the Old French names Caterine and Cateline, which were forms of the personal name Catharine. These names were introduced into England in the 12th century and became very popular, especially in the variant forms Catelin and Cateline. Thus the surname Gatlin is a metronymic type of surname, and is derived from the name of the original bearer's mother.

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The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore, spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Gatlin has been recorded under many different variations, including Catlin, Catling, Catlyn, Catlyne, Catlyng and others.

First found in Bedfordshire (Old English: Bedanfordscir), located in Southeast-central England, formerly part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia, where they held a family seat from very ancient times; some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gatlin research. Another 239 words(17 lines of text) covering the years 1559 and 1574 are included under the topic Early Gatlin History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Gatlin Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Gatlin or a variant listed above:

Gatlin Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Henry Gatlin, who arrived in Maryland in 1665

Gatlin Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • James Gatlin, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811
  • Jose Gatlin, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1869

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  • Justin Gatlin (b. 1982), American sprinter and Olympic gold medalist
  • Larry Wayne Gatlin (b. 1948), American country music singer best-known as the lead in Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers
  • Alfred Moore Gatlin (1790-1841), American Congressional Representative from North Carolina
  • Richard Caswell Gatlin (1809-1896), Confederate general during the American Civil War


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  1. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  2. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  3. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  4. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  5. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  6. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  7. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  8. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  9. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  10. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  11. ...


This page was last modified on 16 May 2013 at 14:51.

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