Show ContentsMeachum History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Welsh Meachum surname is thought to derived from name of the village of Machen, located near Caerphilly, in the county of Monmouthshire.

Alternatively, the name could have been derived from the name of an ancestor as in 'the son of Matthew.' [1]

Early Origins of the Meachum family

The surname Meachum was first found in Monmouthshire (Welsh: Sir Fynwy), at Machen, a parish, in the union of Newport, partly in the hundred of Wentlloog, South Wales. [2]

Early History of the Meachum family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Meachum research. Another 65 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1541, 1614, 1614, 1600 and 1675 are included under the topic Early Meachum History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Meachum Spelling Variations

There are relatively few surnames native to Wales, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. Early variations of Welsh surnames can be explained by the fact that very few people in the early Middle Ages were literate. Priests and the few other literate people were responsible for recording names in official documents. And because most people could not specific how to properly record their names it was up to the individual recorder of that time to determine how a spoken name should be recorded. Variations due to the imprecise or improper recording of a name continued later in history when names originally composed in the Brythonic Celtic, language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, were transliterated into English. Welsh names that were documented in English often changed dramatically since the native language of Wales, which was highly inflected, did not copy well. Occasionally, however, spelling variations were carried out according to an individual's specific design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by minor variations. The spelling variations of the name Meachum have included Machen, Machin, Machon, Mackon, Makin, Makins, MacMacken and many more.

Early Notables of the Meachum family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Thomas Machen (c. 1541-1614), an English mercer who was mayor of Gloucester three times, Member of Parliament for Gloucester in 1614; Bathsua Reginald Makin (c.1600-c.1675) English middle-class proto-feminist who...
Another 39 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Meachum Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Meachum Ranking

In the United States, the name Meachum is the 18,570th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [3]

Ireland Migration of the Meachum family to Ireland

Some of the Meachum family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Meachum migration to the United States +

Many Welsh families joined their Scottish and Irish neighbors during the late 1800s and early 1900s in seeking refuge in North America. Like the Irish and Scottish, many Welsh anxiously awaited the work, freedom, and opportunities that they believed lay in North America. Those who did journey over to the United States and what became known as Canada often realized those dreams, but only through much toil and perseverance. Whenever and however these Welsh immigrants arrived in North America, they were instrumental in the creation of the industry, commerce, and cultural heritage within those two developing nations. In the immigration and passenger lists a number of early immigrants bearing the name Meachum were found:

Meachum Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mary Meachum, aged 24, who settled in Atlanta, Ga., in 1922
  • Warren Meachum, aged 3, who immigrated to Atlanta, Ga., in 1922

Contemporary Notables of the name Meachum (post 1700) +

  • Mary Meachum (1801-1869), American abolitionist who, with her husband John Berry Meachum, helped enslaved people escape to freedom in the Underground Railroad, inspiration of The Mary Meachum Freedom Crossing, dedicated, Nov 1, 2001
  • Valerie Meachum (b. 1969), American stunt woman and actress from Wyandotte, Michigan, known for her work in The Deadersons (2015-2016)
  • Sharon Meachum, American researcher at the Division of Toxicology, Department of Veterinary Biosciences, University of Illinois
  • John Berry Meachum (1789-1854), American pastor, businessman, educator and founder of the oldest black church in Missouri
  • Robert Meachum, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Michigan, 1968 [4]
  • Hubert Jennings Meachum (1920-2001), American politician, Member of Arkansas State House of Representatives, 1951-57; Municipal judge in Arkansas, 1959-79 [4]

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  4. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 14) . Retrieved from on Facebook