What is the origin of the last name Pitts?

The last name Pitts originates from the Middle English word "pitt," meaning a pit or hollow, and was likely a topographic name for someone living near a pit or hollow. This surname, with its variant spellings such as Pytts and Pitt, can be traced back to the medieval period in England, where it was commonly used to describe someone's residence or a geographical feature in their vicinity. Over time, the name Pitts has spread beyond its English origins and can be found among diverse populations around the world.

Countries of origin for the last name Pitts

The last name Pitts has an intriguing etymology that is rooted in history. Derived from the Old English word “pytt,” meaning a pit or hollow, the surname Pitts refers to individuals who lived near a pit or hollow. Commonly found in the English Midlands, particularly in areas where coal mining or other excavations were prevalent, this surname reflects the geographic and occupational elements of ancestral life.

Pitts is a patronymic surname, which means it originated from the personal name of an ancestor or patriarch. In this case, the name is derived from “Pit,” suggesting that the first bearer of the Pitts surname had a given name associated with pits or hollows. It is likely that the name Pitts was bestowed upon individuals who displayed skills or knowledge in excavation-related activities.

Through the centuries, the Pitts surname has evolved and branched out. Variations of the surname, such as Pits, Pittes, and Pitt, have emerged, highlighting the flexibility and adaptability of family names over time. This variation also contributes to the rich tapestry of surnames found within the United States today.

The Pitts surname made its way to the United States during the colonial period. With the influx of European settlers, many individuals with the name Pitts sought opportunities in the New World. The surname can be found throughout the United States, particularly in states with deep historical ties to early settlements, such as Virginia, North Carolina, and Georgia.

Like many surnames, Pitts has been subject to various spellings and pronunciations over generations. This can be attributed to regional accents and dialects as well as changes in spelling conventions over time. The pronunciation of the surname may vary among individuals and communities, but the core etymology and meaning remain the same.

While the Pitts surname has a clear etymological origin and meaning, it is important to acknowledge the potential for unexplored stories and connections within individual family lines. Tracing one’s ancestral roots and delving into the intricate web of genealogy can unveil surprising narratives and forge connections between individuals and their historical pasts. The name Pitts serves as a gateway to these possibilities, prompting individuals to embark on journeys of discovery and exploration.

Interesting facts about the last name Pitts

  • The surname Pitts is of English origin.
  • It is a variant spelling of the surname Potts.
  • The name is derived from the Middle English word “pott,” which means a pot or a vessel.
  • Pitts is classified as a topographic surname, indicating that it was originally given to someone who lived near a pit or a hollow.
  • The surname Pitts is relatively uncommon, ranking as the 7,545th most common surname in the United States.
  • Famous personalities with the surname Pitts include American journalist Leonard Pitts Jr. and English actor Brad Pitt.
  • The name Pitts has variations in spelling, including Pits, Pitt, and Pit.
  • There are several places in the United States named Pitts or Pittsville, believed to be derived from the surname Pitts.
  • Pitts may also be a nickname derived from the French word “petit,” meaning small.
  • The surname Pitts has been found in records dating back to the 13th century in England.

Name Rank


There are around 49740 people with the last name Pitts in the US

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