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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Gatlin family come from? What is the English Gatlin family crest and coat of arms? 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 one of the oldest family names to come from the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is derived 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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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 Gatlin has undergone many spelling 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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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 Gatlin were among those contributors:

Gatlin Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Henry Gatlin, who arrived in Maryland in 1665

Gatlin Settlers in 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. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  2. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  3. 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.
  4. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  5. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  6. 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.
  7. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  10. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  11. ...

The Gatlin Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Gatlin 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 16 May 2013 at 14:51.

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