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

Tillman is an Anglo-Saxon name. The name was originally given to a farmer or a maker of tiles. In the former case, the surname is derived from the Old English word tilman, which means husbandman or farmer.


The surname Tillman was first found in Kent where they held a family seat anciently some say before the Norman Conquest in 1066.

One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Tillman has appeared include Tillman, Tilman, Tilmanstone, Tilghman, Tileman and others.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Tillman research. Another 272 words (19 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Tillman History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Tillman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Tillman arrived in North America very early:

Tillman Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Gideon Tillman, who landed in Maryland in 1673
  • Roger Tillman, who arrived in Virginia in 1689

Tillman Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • J Henry Tillman, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1751
  • J. Henry Tillman arrived in Philadelphia in 1751
  • J. Henry Tillman, who came to Pennsylvania in 1751
  • Johannes Tillman, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1752
  • Johannes Tillman, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1752

Tillman Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Clemens Tillman, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1844
  • Aug Tillman, who landed in America in 1849
  • H Tillman, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • Carl Walfred Tillman, who arrived in Arkansas in 1893

Tillman Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Antony Tillman, who was on reocord in the census of Ontario, Canada of 1871


  • Joshua Tillman (b. 1981), American folk singer, guitarist, drummer, and songwriter
  • Charles "Peanut" Tillman (b. 1981), American NFL football cornerback for the Chicago Bears
  • Christopher Steven "Chris" Tillman (b. 1988), American Major League Baseball right-handed starting pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles
  • Benjamin Tillman (1847-1918), American politician who served as Governor of South Carolina from 1890 to 1894 and as a United States Senator from 1895 until his death, eponym of the USS Tillman (DD-135), a Wickes-class destroyer and the USS Tillman (DD-641), a Gleaves-class destroyer
  • Pat Tillman (1976-2004), American football player and soldier in the United States Army, recipient of Silver Star and Purple Heart
  • Carrie Tillman, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Missouri, 1928
  • Benjamin Ryan Tillman (1847-1918), American Democrat politician, Governor of South Carolina, 1890-94; Delegate to South Carolina State Constitutional Convention, 1895; U.S. Senator from South Carolina, 1895-1918
  • Abram Martin Tillman (b. 1863), American politician, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, 1898-1914
  • Charles Tillman, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Mississippi, 2004
  • Cliff L. Tillman, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from California, 2000



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: Spes alit agricolam
Motto Translation: Hope nourishes the farmer.


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  1. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  2. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  4. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  5. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  6. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  7. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  8. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  9. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  10. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  11. ...

The Tillman Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Tillman 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 13 February 2016 at 00:59.

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