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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016


The lineage of the name Cheatham begins with the Anglo-Saxon tribes in Britain. It is a result of when they lived in Cheetham, in the county of Lancashire. It is from the place-name Cheetham that the family name is derived.

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The surname Cheatham was first found in Lancashire at Cheetham, a township, in the parish and union of Manchester, hundred of Salford. [1] Now part of Greater Manchester, Cheetham dates back to the late 12th century and literally meant "homestead or village by the wood called Chet," from the Celtic word "ced" meaning "forest" and the Old English word "ham." [2] The ancient archeological site Cheetham Close, a megalithic site and scheduled ancient monument is nearby and is generally thought to have been a druidical ritual place with a Roman road passed 'within two hundred yards' of the megalith. As far as the surname is concerned, one of the first records was Geoffrey de Chetham who was listed in the Assize Rolls of Lancashire in 1246. Over one hundred years later, Thomas de Cheteham was listed in Lancashire in 1394. [3] Another branch of the family was found at Allerton in Lancashire. "At the time of the Domesday Survey, three thanes held 'Alretune;' which was in the possession of Geoffrey de Chetham in the reign of Henry III." [1]

Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Cheatham has undergone many spelling variations, including Chetham, Cheetham, Cheetam, Cheetum and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cheatham research. Another 115 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cheatham History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cheatham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Cheatham family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Cheatham were among those contributors:

Cheatham Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • James C Cheatham, who arrived in Texas in 1835
  • Henry Cheatham, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851

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  • Jimmy Cheatham (1924-2007), American jazz trombonist and teacher
  • Katherine "Kitty" Cheatham (1864-1946), American singer and actress
  • Maree Cheatham (b. 1942), American daytime serial actress
  • Adolphus Anthony "Doc" Cheatham (1905-1997), American jazz trumpeter, singer, and bandleader
  • Benjamin Franklin "Frank" Cheatham (1820-1886), Tennessee aristocrat, California gold miner, and a General in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War
  • Henry Plummer Cheatham (1857-1935), American Republican politician, U.S. Representative from North Carolina 2nd District, 1889-93; Delegate to Republican National Convention from North Carolina, 1904
  • George F. II Cheatham, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Kentucky, 1996
  • Edward Saunders Cheatham (1818-1878), American politician, Member of Tennessee State House of Representatives, 1853-55; Member of Tennessee State Senate, 1855-57, 1861-63
  • Boyd M. Cheatham, American politician, Member of Tennessee State Legislature
  • B. F. Cheatham (1821-1886), American politician, Candidate for Mayor of Nashville, Tennessee, 1857

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  • Descendants of Thomas Cheatham of Chesterfield County, Virginia by Lucille Cheatham Mosely.
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Quod tuum tenne
Motto Translation: Hold what is yours

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  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)

Other References

  1. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  2. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  3. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  4. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  5. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  6. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  7. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  8. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Cheatham Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Cheatham 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 8 March 2016 at 16:21.

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