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Origins Available: French, Welsh


The surname Challen is derived from the Old English word "chaloun," which means "blanket." This word comes from the place named Châlons-sur-Marne, a prosperous industrial center in Europe, where these items were produced. The name is thought to have been occupational for someone who made or sold blankets or coverlets. The surname Challen may also be a local surname given to someone who came from this place.

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The surname Challen was first found in Powys (Welsh: Powys), a Welsh Kingdom in post-Roman times, now a county of Wales created by joining the former counties of Montgomeryshire, Radnorshire, and Breconshire, 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.

Although there are not an extremely large number Welsh surnames, there are an inordinately large number of spelling variations of those surnames. This variety of spellings began almost immediately after the acceptance of surnames within Welsh society. As time progressed, these old Brythonic names were eventually were recorded in English. This process was problematic in that many of the highly inflected sounds of the native language of Wales could not be properly captured in English. Some families, however, did decide to modify their own names to indicate a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even a patriotic affiliation. The name Challen has seen various spelling variations: Chaloner, Challener, Challenor, Challinor, Chalener, Chalenor, Challoner, Chalinor, Challon, Challin, Challen, Chalen, Chalin and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Challen research. Another 305 words (22 lines of text) covering the years 1472, 1558, 1521, 1565, 1559, 1615, 1595, 1661, 1650, 1699 and 1699 are included under the topic Early Challen History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Sir Thomas Chaloner (1521-1565), an English statesman and poet; Rev. Edward Chaloner, Chaplain to Charles I; Sir Thomas Chaloner (1559-1615), an English naturalist who introduced alum manufacturing to England; and Thomas Chaloner (1595-1661), an English politician, commissioner at the trial of...

Another 60 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Challen Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Challen Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • William Challen arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Eliza" in 1840
  • Charlotte Challen arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Eliza" in 1840
  • Henry Challen, aged 31, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Macedon" in 1849
  • Ellen Challen, aged 30, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Macedon" in 1849
  • Charlotte Challen, aged 5, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Macedon" in 1849
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  • James Challen (b. 1787), English cricketer
  • James Challen (1825-1900), English cricketer
  • Albert Charles Challen (1847-1881), British painter
  • Dr Craig Challen, Australian technical diver and cave explorer, recipient of the Oztek 2009 Diver of the Year Award
  • John Bonamy Challen (1863-1937), English cricketer who made 52 first-class appearances
  • Charles Challen (1894-1960), British barrister and Conservative politician
  • Colin Robert Challen (b. 1953), British Labour Party politician
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Citations



    Other References

    1. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
    2. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
    3. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
    4. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    5. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
    6. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
    7. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
    8. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
    9. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
    10. Morgan, T. J. Morgan and Prys Morgan. Welsh Surnames. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1985. Print.
    11. ...

    The Challen Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Challen Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

    This page was last modified on 6 August 2016 at 01:35.

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