Mathis History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The German surname Mathis emerged in the lands that formed the powerful German state of Prussia, which at one time was an immense territory that stretched from France and the Low Countries to the Baltic sea and Poland. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the German territories were inhabited by a variety of barbarian tribes. The borders of the barbarian kingdoms changed frequently, but the region that became known as Prussia was roughly divided between the areas of Brandenburg-Prussia, West Prussia, and East Prussia. By the 19th century, Brandenburg-Prussia had incorporated East Prussia, West Prussia and many other German territories. Moreover, in the late 19th century, it led the German states in the unification of Germany.

Early Origins of the Mathis family

The surname Mathis was first found in Prussia, where the family contributed greatly to the development of an emerging nation, and would later play a large role in the tribal and national conflicts of the area. The name stems from two sources which were continually mixed up throughout the Middle Ages, so they can no longer be differentiated: one was Matthaeus the Evangelist, who was patron saint of tax collectors, and the other was Mattias ( Hebrew for "gift of the gods",) who was one of the twelve Apostles. In later years the name branched into many houses, each playing a significant role in local social and political affairs.

Important Dates for the Mathis family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mathis research. Another 146 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1727, 1710, 1558, 1504, 1565, 1681, 1764, 1681, 1764, 1761, 1831, 1809 and 1811 are included under the topic Early Mathis History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mathis Spelling Variations

Many cultural groups lived in the German states in medieval times. Each had its own dialect and traditions, and unique variations of popular names. Low German, which is similar to contemporary Dutch, was spoken in Westphalia. German names are characterized by additions such as regional suffixes and phrases that tell something about the origin or background of its original bearer. Further contributing to the variation in German names was the fact that there were no spelling rules in medieval times: scribes recorded names according to their sound. The recorded spelling variations of Mathis include Mathias, Matthias, Mathius, Matthius, Matheus, Mathesius, Matheson, Matthisson, Mathies, Mathiessen, Thiessen and many more.

Early Notables of the Mathis family (pre 1700)

Prominent bearers of the family name Mathis during this time period were Johannes Mathesius (1504-1565), who was a friend and disciple of Martin Luther. He is the author of the first biography of Luther, and himself wrote hymns and sermons. Johann Mattheson (1681-1764) was a musician and translator and produced the first German imitation of "The...
Another 55 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mathis Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mathis migration to the United States

The state of Prussia was a great influence on the shape of modern Germany. After the Second World War, Prussia's land was divided among the Soviet Union, Poland, East Germany and West Germany and the state was abolished. Some Prussians remained in those countries after the war, while many others migrated to North America in search of a new start. Philadelphia was their primary point of entry to the United States, after which many of them moved on to Ohio, Texas, Illinois, California, New York, and Maryland. A large number of Prussians also migrated to Ontario and the prairie provinces as United Empire Loyalists. Analysis of immigration records has shown some of the first Mathiss to arrive in North America, and among them were:

Mathis Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Ann Mathis, who landed in Virginia in 1636 [1]
Mathis Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Hans Jacob Mathis, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1733 [1]
Mathis Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Christian Mathis, who arrived in New York in 1847 [1]
  • Cathrine Mathis, aged 26, who landed in New York, NY in 1852 [1]
  • Jean Mathis, aged 57, who arrived in New York, NY in 1852 [1]
  • John C Mathis, who landed in Indiana in 1852 [1]
  • Madeleine Mathis, aged 23, who arrived in New York, NY in 1852 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Mathis (post 1700)

  • Marvin Dawson Mathis (1940-2017), American politician, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Georgia (1971-1981)
  • Samantha Mathis (b. 1970), American Screen Actors Guild Award and Young Artist Award nominated actress, American Psycho (2000), Buried (2010) and Broken Arrow (1996)
  • Robert Nathan Mathis (b. 1981), American NFL football outside linebacker for the Indianapolis Colts
  • Reginald Levi Mathis (b. 1956), former American football linebacker who played from 1979 to 1990
  • Rashean Jamil Mathis (b. 1980), American NFL football cornerback for the Detroit Lions
  • Kevin Bryant Mathis (b. 1974), former American NFL football cornerback who played from 1997 to 2006
  • Jeffrey Stephen "Jeff" Mathis (b. 1983), American Major League Baseball catcher for the Miami Marlin
  • Douglas Alan "Doug" Mathis (b. 1983), American Major League Baseball pitcher
  • Clint Mathis (b. 1976), retired American soccer player and current assistant coach of the Chicago Fire Soccer Club
  • Buster Mathis Jr. (b. 1970), American former professional boxer in the heavyweight division, son of Buster Mathis
  • ... (Another 14 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Mathis family

Arrow Air Flight 1285
  • Mr. Donald Lee Mathis (b. 1966), American Private from Las Vegas, Nevada, USA who died in the crash [2]


  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  2. ^ American War Memorials - Flight 1285. (Retrieved 2016, August 24) . Retrieved from
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