What is the origin of the last name Tatum?

The last name TATUM is of English origin and derives from the pre-7th century Old Norse personal name "Tata," which translates to "cheerful," combined with the Old Norse element "holmr," meaning "island" or "promontory." It is believed that the surname was originally a locational name for someone who inhabited or owned land near or on a cheerful island or promontory. Over time, the name TATUM evolved into a hereditary surname and has been recorded in various forms, including Tataham, Tatham, and Tatam, before settling on its current spelling.

Countries of origin for the last name Tatum

The last name Tatum has an intriguing history that spans several centuries. While its exact origins are uncertain, there are a few facts that can shed light on its meaning and significance.

One fact about the last name Tatum is that it is primarily found in English-speaking countries, particularly in the United States. It is believed to be of English origin and is considered a relatively uncommon surname.

An interesting aspect of the name Tatum is its etymology. The origins of the surname can be traced back to the Old English word “tata,” which means “cheerful” or “mirthful.” This word eventually evolved to become the Middle English term “tat,” which referred to a pet name or term of endearment for a child.

Another notable fact is that Tatum is often used as both a surname and a given name. It gained popularity as a given name in the 20th century, particularly in the United States, influencing its usage as a last name as well.

The Tatum surname appears to have a geographical connection as well. It is associated with the counties of Derbyshire and Staffordshire in England, indicating that it potentially originated from these regions.

Historical records also provide some insight into the Tatum name’s prevalence. Census data from the United States demonstrates that the surname has been present in the country since at least the 18th century, with concentrations in states such as North Carolina, Texas, and California.

Additionally, the Tatum name has had notable bearers throughout history, particularly in the fields of entertainment and sports. Several individuals with the surname Tatum have achieved fame, which contributes to the name’s recognition and cultural significance.

In conclusion, the last name Tatum has a rich history and diverse associations. Its English origins, connection to the term of endearment “tat,” and geographical links to specific regions in England provide intriguing insights. The Tatum name’s usage as both a surname and given name, as well as its presence in the United States since the 18th century, further contribute to its significance. Overall, the Tatum surname is a fascinating subject for genealogists and those interested in name etymology, with a range of possibilities for exploration and discovery.

Interesting facts about the last name Tatum

  • The surname Tatum is of English origin and is derived from the Old Norse personal name “Teitr,” meaning “cheerful” or “glad,” combined with the Anglo-Saxon “ham,” meaning “settlement” or “homestead.”
  • There are different spellings of the surname Tatum, including Taitom, Tatem, Taitt, and Tatam. These variations indicate the evolution of the name over time.
  • Records suggest that the Tatum surname originated in Staffordshire, England, where it was found in the village of Tatenhill.
  • The Tatum family name is relatively uncommon. It is ranked 4,692nd in the United States, indicating its rarity compared to other surnames.
  • Notable individuals with the surname Tatum include American actress Tatum O’Neal and American actor Channing Tatum. Both have achieved significant success in the entertainment industry.
  • The Tatum surname has spread beyond its English origins and can be found in different regions of the world, including the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
  • Genealogical research indicates that the earliest known recording of the Tatum surname dates back to the 13th century, in the county of Staffordshire, England.
  • Through the years, the Tatum name has been associated with various occupations, such as farming, blacksmithing, and leatherworking.
  • Like many surnames, the popularity and distribution of the Tatum surname can be influenced by migration and relocation patterns, as well as historical events and economic factors.
  • In recent years, the Tatum surname has gained some recognition due to the success of the American actor Channing Tatum, leading to increased interest in the name’s origins and genealogy.

Name Rank


There are around 24558 people with the last name Tatum in the US

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