Show ContentsOatman History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Oatman is a name whose history on English soil dates back to the wave of migration that followed the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The name Oatman comes from a gatekeeper. Further research proved the surname Oatman was originally derived from the Old English word geat, meaning gate.

Early Origins of the Oatman family

The surname Oatman was first found in Dorset where they held a family seat from very ancient times and were Lords of the Manor of Stock Gaylard in that shire. Conjecturally, this family name is descended from William d'Eu who held the manor at the time of the taking of the Domesday Book in 1086 A.D. Count William d'Eu's main holdings were in Wiltshire but it may well be that a junior line of the family became husbandmen to his Dorset holdings.

Early History of the Oatman family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Oatman research. Another 78 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1611, 1674, 1685, 1690, 1689, 1730, 1643, 1578, 1632, 1641, 1642 and 1643 are included under the topic Early Oatman History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Oatman Spelling Variations

Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Yetman, Yeatman, Yeetman, Yeaman, Yateman, Yatman and others.

Early Notables of the Oatman family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Pym Yeatmen of Stock House; Sir John Yeamans, 1st Baronet (1611-1674), an English colonial administrator from Bristol described in his day as "a pirate ashore", Governor of the Province of Carolina; Sir William Yeamans, 2nd Baronet (d. c. 1685); Sir John Yeamans, 3rd Baronet (d. c. 1690); and Sir John Yeamans, 4th Baronet (c. 1689-c. 1730.) Robert Yeamans or Yeomans (d. 1643), was an English Royalist who came of a numerous Bristol family, and was probably nearly related to William Yeamans (1578-1632?), a graduate of Balliol College, Oxford. "Robert was a well-known merchant and...
Another 122 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Oatman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Oatman Ranking

In the United States, the name Oatman is the 15,721st most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1]

United States Oatman migration to the United States +

Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World under extremely harsh conditions. Overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Oatman or a variant listed above:

Oatman Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • H Oatman, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [2]
  • Mary Oatman, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [2]
  • A Oatman, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1855 [2]

Canada Oatman migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Oatman Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Henry Oatman U.E. who settled in Eastern District, Williamsburgh, South Dundas, Ontario c. 1784 [3]
Oatman Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Asahel Oatman, who landed in Canada in 1840

Contemporary Notables of the name Oatman (post 1700) +

  • Frank Oatman, American builder of a filling station in Eau Claire, Wisconsin in 1931; the station was added the National Register of Historic Places in 2001
  • Olive Oatman (1837-1903), American woman from Illinois who was famously abducted by a Native American tribe; her family was killed in 1851 when she was fourteen, she and her sister were abducted, eponym of the ghost town Oatman, Arizona
  • Mary Ann Oatman (1844-1851), American survivor of abuse by the Yavapai people, sister of Olive Oatman
  • William Howard "Billy" Oatman IV (b. 1965), left-handed American ten-pin bowler, member of the Professional Bowlers Association
  • Warren Russell Oatman (1905-1964), Canadian professional ice hockey player who played 121 games in the National Hockey League
  • Edward Cole "Eddie" Oatman (1889-1973), Canadian professional ice hockey player, a star with the Quebec Bulldogs when it won the 1912 Stanley Cup

The Oatman Motto +

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: Propositi tenax
Motto Translation: Tenacious of my resolve.

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  2. 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)
  3. Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X on Facebook