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


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The surname Tatum was first found in Yorkshire where the family name was first referenced in the year 1208 when William Tatham held estates. It is said that King John, while being the Earl of Moreton, gave the service of William of Tatham to Robert de Monte Begon (probably about 1185). Tatham is a parish, in the hundred of Lonsdale, south of the Sands in Lancashire. The place name dates back to the Domesday Book of 1086 when it was first listed as Tathaim. [1] Literally it means "homestead of a man called Tata," from the Old English personal name + "ham." [2] "Before the reign of Richard I., a family of the local name possessed lands in Tatham, but the estate passed, before the 34th of Edward III., into the Dacre family." [3]

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Tatum include Tatham, Tatam, Tatem, Tatum, Tatim, Tathem, Tattum and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Tatum research. Another 211 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1230, 1185, 1455, 1487, 1632, 1664, 1632 and 1641 are included under the topic Early Tatum History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Tatum Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Tatum Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Ralph Tatum, who landed in Virginia in 1642

Tatum Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Ed Tatum, who landed in Virginia in 1700

Tatum Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Joseph J Tatum, aged 38, arrived in Maryland in 1812
  • Jacob Tatum, aged 23, arrived in Missouri in 1839
  • Theodore Tatum, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850

Tatum Settlers in United States in the 20th Century


  • Edward Tatum, aged 30, who settled in America, in 1908
  • Charles F. Tatum, aged 65, who settled in America, in 1911
  • Dorothea Lloyd Tatum, aged 23, who emigrated to the United States, in 1917
  • George Tatum, aged 17, who emigrated to the United States, in 1918
  • Alton J. Tatum, aged 20, who emigrated to the United States, in 1918


Tatum Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century


  • Diana Tatum, aged 25, landed in Fort Cumberland, Nova Scotia in 1774

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  • Charles "Chuck" Tatum, American Marine in the Battle of Iwo Jima. In the mini-series The Pacific; Tatum is portrayed by actor Ben Esler
  • Donn Tatum (1913-1993), the first non-Disney family member to be president of Walt Disney Productions
  • Bradford Tatum (b. 1965), American actor, writer, and producer
  • James M. "Big Jim" Tatum (1913-1959), American football and baseball player and coach
  • Beverly Daniel Tatum (b. 1954), president of Spelman College, Georgia
  • Channing Matthew Tatum (b. 1980), American actor
  • Frank Tatum, American politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Iowa 4th District, 1932
  • Doris Tatum, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Mississippi, 1980
  • B. B. Tatum, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Florida, 1908
  • Mrs. George Tatum, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Missouri, 1924

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  • Rising in the West: The True Story of an Ok.
  • Family by Dan Morgan.
  • The Name and Family of Tatum or Tatham by Media Research Bureau.
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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

Other References

  1. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  2. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  3. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  4. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  5. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  7. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  8. 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).
  9. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  10. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  11. ...

The Tatum Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Tatum 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 24 February 2016 at 14:52.

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