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


The origins of the Prentiss surname date from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name originated with an early member who was a student in a craft; an apprentice having derived from the Old English word aprentis, which meant "learner of a craft." In the Middle Ages, workers and tradesmen didn't learn occupations in school. Instead, they would find an accomplished master of the craft and learn it directly from them in return for free labor during the period of apprenticeship. This is not an occupational surname for apprenticeship is not an occupation per se. It is instead how a person would learn an occupation. Often, the surname was recorded of people who had long finished their apprenticeships, and therefore could not be called one anymore. Instead, they were given the name for exhibiting typical characteristics of an apprentice: clumsiness, eagerness, and other characteristics of callow youth even into their adulthood.

Prentiss Early Origins



The surname Prentiss was first found in Essex where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

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Prentiss Spelling Variations


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Prentiss Spelling Variations



The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore, spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Prentiss has been recorded under many different variations, including Prentice, Prentis, Prentiss, Prentisse and others.

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Prentiss Early History


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Prentiss Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Prentiss research. Another 317 words (23 lines of text) covering the year 1327 is included under the topic Early Prentiss History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Prentiss Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Prentiss Early Notables (pre 1700)



More information is included under the topic Early Prentiss Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Prentiss In Ireland


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Prentiss In Ireland



Some of the Prentiss family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 141 words (10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Prentiss or a variant listed above:

Prentiss Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Valentine Prentiss, who arrived in Roxbury, Massachusetts in 1631
  • Thomas Prentiss, who landed in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1652

Prentiss Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • John Prentiss settled in New York in 1823
  • John C Prentiss, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850

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Contemporary Notables of the name Prentiss (post 1700)


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Contemporary Notables of the name Prentiss (post 1700)



  • Henry Prentiss (1801-1859), American manufacturer of musical instruments, umbrellas and sheet music in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Brigadier-General Paul Hyde Prentiss (1895-1953), American Commanding Officer Great Falls Air Force Base, Montana (1949-1950)
  • Brigadier-General Augustin Mitchell Prentiss (1890-1977), American Commanding General of Pine Bluff Arsenal (1941-1946)
  • John Holmes Prentiss (1784-1861), American politician, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York (1837-1841)
  • Seargent Smith Prentiss (1808-1850), American politician who represented Mississippi in the Twenty-fifth United States Congress from 1838 to 1839
  • Samuel Prentiss (1782-1857), American politician, United States Senator from Vermont (1831-1842)
  • Paula Prentiss (b. 1939), born Paula Ragusa, American actress, known for her roles in Where the Boys Are, Man's Favorite Sport?, The Stepford Wives, What's New Pussycat?, The Black Marble, and The Parallax View, wife of Richard Benjamin
  • Elizabeth Prentiss (1818-1878), American songwriter, poet, writer
  • Benjamin Prentiss (1819-1901), Union general in American civil war

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Prentiss Family Crest Products


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Prentiss Family Crest Products




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See Also


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See Also




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Citations


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Citations



    Other References

    1. 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.
    2. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
    3. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
    4. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
    5. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
    6. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
    7. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
    8. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
    9. 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).
    10. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
    11. ...

    The Prentiss Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Prentiss 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 26 March 2014 at 11:15.

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