Pittam History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The distinguished surname Pittam emerged among the industrious people of Flanders, which was an important trading partner and political ally of Britain during the Middle Ages. As a result of the frequent commercial intercourse between the Flemish and English nations, many Flemish migrants settled in Britain. In early times, people were known by only a single name. However, as the population grew and people traveled further afield, it became increasingly necessary to assume an additional name to differentiate between bearers of the same personal name. The manner in which hereditary surnames arose is interesting. Local surnames are derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. Flemish surnames of this type frequently are prefixed by de la or de le, which mean of the or from the. The Pittam family originally lived in any low-lying area resembling a pit or hollows. The surname Pittam is derived from the Old English words pytt, which means pit, and mann, which means man. The surname Pittam belongs to the class of topographic surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees.

Early Origins of the Pittam family

The surname Pittam was first found in Devon, but we must look to Normandy, France to find the earliest record of the name. There we found Maingot Piteman who was listed in 1198 in the Magnum Rotulum Scaccarii Normanniae... [1] Uban Piteman was listed in the Assize Rolls of Norfolk in 1203 [2] and John Piteman was listed in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 in Buckinghamshire. [3]

Early History of the Pittam family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pittam research. Another 77 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Pittam History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pittam Spelling Variations

Flemish surnames are characterized by a large number of spelling variations. One reason for this is that medieval English lacked definite spelling rules. The spellings of surnames were also influenced by the official court languages, which were French and Latin. Names were rarely spelled consistently in medieval times. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to specific spelling rules, and people often had their names registered in several different forms throughout their lives. One of the greatest reasons for change is the linguistic uniqueness of the Flemish settlers in England, who spoke a language closely related to Dutch. The pronunciation and spelling of Flemish names were often altered to suit the tastes of English-speaking people. In many cases, the first, final, or middle syllables of surnames were eliminated. The name has been spelled Pitman, Pittman and others.

Early Notables of the Pittam family (pre 1700)

Another 31 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Pittam Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Pittam migration to the United States +

Amongst the settlers in North America with this distinguished name Pittam were

Pittam Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Pittam, who landed in New York in 1836 [4]
Pittam Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Herbert H. Pittam, aged 33, who arrived in New York City, New York in 1919 aboard the ship "Adriatic" from Liverpool, England [5]
  • Joseph Pittam, aged 60, originally from Sale, England, who arrived in New York City, New York in 1919 aboard the ship "Cedric" from Liverpool, England [6]
  • Emily Pittam, aged 60, originally from Sale, England, who arrived in New York City, New York in 1919 aboard the ship "Cedric" from Liverpool, England [7]

Australia Pittam migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Pittam Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Edward Pittam, British Convict who was convicted in Northhampton, Northamptonshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Caledonia" on 5th July 1820, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [8]
  • Mr. Henry Pittam, English convict who was convicted in Northampton, Northamptonshire, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Equestrian" on 25th January 1844, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Island) [9]


  1. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ 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)
  5. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J6Q6-B6X : 6 December 2014), Herbert H. Pittam, 31 Jan 1919; citing departure port Liverpool, arrival port New York City, New York, New York, ship name Adriatic, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  6. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J643-7J8 : 6 December 2014), Joseph Pittam, 15 Sep 1919; citing departure port Liverpool, arrival port New York City, New York, New York, ship name Cedric, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  7. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J643-7JD : 6 December 2014), Emily Pittam, 15 Sep 1919; citing departure port Liverpool, arrival port New York City, New York, New York, ship name Cedric, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  8. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 25th November 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/caledonia
  9. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 4th May 2022). https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/equestrian


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