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Family spelling variants includes Paton

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This famous and popular surname is Anglo-Scottish. Recorded as Paton, Patton, Patten, Padon, Paddon, and the true patronymic of Patonson, It has two known origins. Firstly it may be a short or fused form of the ancient personal name Patrick, as in Pat + the diminutive suffix '-in' meaning 'Little Pat' or perhaps 'son of Pat', or secondly it may have been a nickname for the son of a man with a cropped hair or was bald. This is from the Middle English word "pate" meaning head or skull. The early charters of Scotland mention Thomas Pattoun of Aberdeen in 1538, and Thomas Patton of Dundee who was killed at the battle of Pinkie in 1547...

Patton (Variants: Paton, Patten, Patent)

Arising from the same original source as Patterson, this surname is derived from the name of an ancestor 'the son of Patrick. From the Latin word ‘patriots’, meaning ‘nobleman’. The word ‘patrician’, also the same source, and personal name Patricia is the feminine form.

Another origin, from Old English pæð ‘path, track’ or an Old English personal name *Patta + Old English t?n.

Early bearers of the surname include: Roland de Patton, 1289 in Patent Rolls (Rugley, Northumb); John de Patton’, 1297 in Subsidy Rolls (Yorks); John de Patton, 1352 in Patent Rolls (Northumb); Willelmus Patinton’, 1381 in Poll Tax (West Ham, Essex); John Patton, 1513 in York Registry Wills (Filey, ER Yorks); Willm. Patton, 1543 in IGI (Farnworth near Prescot, Lancs); Williy Patton, 1561 in IGI (Fritton, Norfolk); Mable Patton, 1577 in IGI (Hanbury, Staffs); Margaret Patton, 1664 in IGI (Merriott, Somerset).

In 1881, the surname was prevalent in central Scotland, especially Perthshire. Also North East England, including Lancashire. In the county of Gloucestershire, it was a top surname in the district of Bristol.

In the same census year, the most common Patton occupations in the UK were Coal Miner and Labourer.

In 1891, the surname was recorded in England and Wales with 1,218 occurrences and a fewer 259 in Scotland.

William Hampton Patton (1853 – 1918) was an American entomologist who specialised in the Hymenoptera order of insects including bees, ants, wasps and sawflies.

Raymond Stanton Patton (1882 – 1937), was the second Director of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey. This federal agency defines and manages a national coordinate system that provides the foundation for transportation and communication, mapping and charting and applications for science and engineering.

Another noted, James Lloyd Patton (b. 1941), an American evolutionary biologist and mammalogist and one of the most experienced in this field today.

1881, 1891 Census

1881 Census in Gloucestershire

Dictionary of American Family Homes, P Hanks OUP 2003

Homes of Family Names in Great Britain, H.B. Guppy, London 1890

The Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland, P.Hanks, Coats, McClure OUP 2016

1860 Lower, Mark A Patronymica Britannica: a dictionary of the family names of the United Kingdom, London: J.R Smith. Public Domain

1857 Arthur, William An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. New York: Sheldon, Blakeman. Public Domain


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