Surname Hemphill - Meaning and Origin
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Hemphill: What does the surname Hemphill mean?
The last name Hemphill is of Scottish origin and is derived from the barony of Hempriggs in Caithness. The name is derived from the Old English words 'hemel', which means 'a hem or border', and 'prige', which translates to 'a hill or heightened land', together forming 'Hemelprige'.
The first recorded spelling of the Hemphill surname was in 1214 when Walter de Hemelpreghe was mentioned in the records. Historically, the Hemphill surname has been held by individuals of nobility and respected stature. It is associated with the gathering of clans in Scotland, although it originated in the English county of Cumberland.
Most individuals with the Hemphill surname can now be found in the United States, Canada, and Australia, likely because of migration throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries. It is believed that some of the original Hemphill ancestors came to the New World along with other Scots-Irish immigrants.
The Hemphill last name signifies the many generations of nobility that have held this surname with pride. The name is a reminder of the clans that migrated to form a new life, and the dedication of ancestors of present generations to create a brighter future.
Hemphill: Where does the name Hemphill come from?
The last name Hemphill is most common in the United States, but is found all over the world. In the United States, it is most commonly found in the southeastern states, particularly in Alabama and Georgia. Beyond the U.S., the surname is most popular in Northern Ireland and parts of Canada.
In the U.S., the Hemphill surname originates from Scottish-Irish immigrants from the Scottish-English borderlands who settled in colonial America in the 1700s. The first of the Hemphill family, Alexander Hemphill, arrived to America in 1750.
The name is becoming less and less common in the U.S. today, as the number of persons bearing the last name Hemphill has declined in the last few decades both in the U.S. states and in Northern Ireland and Canada. Over time, Hemphill descendants have left their home states and chosen to settle elsewhere in the U.S. and around the world, making the name less prevalent in certain areas.
While Hemphill may not be as common as it once was, it remains a part of the fabric of many families in the U.S. and further abroad.
Variations of the surname Hemphill
The surname Hemphill is a habitational name of Scottish origin, likely derived from either the lands of Hamphill in Angus or the lands of Hemphill in Lanarkshire. In addition to Hemphill, the name may be alternatively spelled as Hemphil, Hemphil, Hemphill, Hemphill, Hamful, and even Hemfels. The surnames corresponding to the origin may include Hamphill, Hamful, Hemphill, Hemfel, and even Hampel.
The variant spellings in this case include Hamful, Hemfel, Hemphil, Hamphill, and even Hemful. This suggests that the common denominator of the origin is the usage of the word “hamp” or “hem” to either refer to land or to a personal name. This could explain the variety of different surnames springing from the same origin.
The names Hemphill and Hamful could also be very much related, considering the fact that the two have similar phonemic pronunciations and spellings—the difference being the addition of the letter “f” in the case of Hamful. Hemfel and Hemphill may also be related, as could Hamphill and Hemphil.
Many of these variants and surnames are likely still found in the locations from which the original Hemphill surname was derived, and they may still be in use today even after centuries of migration. These could include variants like Hemful, Hemfel, Hamphill, Hemphil, and even Hamful. Whatever the case may be, it is clear that the origin of the Hemphill surname is deeply entrenched in the Scottish culture, and its various different variants and spellings are testament to this.
Famous people with the name Hemphill
- Josh Hemphill: US Soccer player
- Laura Hemphill: author and speech coach
- Roy Hemphill: country recording artist
- Charles Long Hemphill Jr.: Bishop of the Methodist Protestant Church
- Richard B. Hemphill: American attorney
- John Hemphill: US Congressman
- John M. Hemphill: US Senator from Texas
- Don Hemphill: American actor
- Maude Frazee Hemphill: American painter
- Chris Hemphill: American humorist and writer
- Lex Hemphill: American model
- Nicole Hemphill: Australian composer and musician
- Calvin Hemphill: NBA coach
- Willie Hemphill: MLB player
- O.T. Hemphill: American politician
- Leonard C. Hemphill: American lawyer
- Kenneth Hemphill: President of Southwestern Seminary
- Debbe Hemphill: American television and film actor
- Caroline D. Hemphill: American politician
- David L. Hemphill: American pastor and evangelist