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Surname Pendleton - Meaning and Origin

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Pendleton: What does the surname Pendleton mean?

The surname Pendleton is of English origin and traces back to the early medieval period. It was derived from a place-name in Lancashire, England. Predominantly, the name is thought to mean "settlement" or "village of the hill," coming from the Old English words "penn," which means "hill" and "tun," which means "settlement" or "enclosure." Hence, it was typically given to folks who resided in or near such a geographic feature. The name emerged as a way to distinguish people by the locations they lived in or near in a time when the general population had no use for surnames. The earliest record of the Pendleton name dates back to the 12th century. Over time, many variations of the name emerged, including Pendilton, Pendleton, Pendelton, and others. As individuals bearing this surname migrated over centuries, it can now be found in many parts of the world, especially in English-speaking countries like the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. It remains relatively common in its place of origin, England.

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Pendleton: Where does the name Pendleton come from?

The last name Pendleton is most commonly found in the United States today. Pendleton is an English family name and is likely derived from any of the various locations within the country with the same name. Though it is unknown when records first mention the Pendleton name, there is evidence of the family in counties such as Essex and Hertfordshire in England going back to the 13th century.

In the United States, Pendleton County, Kentucky was named after the Pendleton family in 1798, so it is highly likely that the family migrated there shortly after. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Pendleton is the most common in Texas, followed closely by North Carolina. In these two states, Pendleton is ranked the 531st and 554th most common surname, respectively. California is the other state where the name ranks in the top 1,000 surnames, making the Pendleton surname especially popular in the Southern United States.

Generally, Pendleton families in the United States tend to be clustered in the South, with some residing in the Midwest and beyond. While the Pendleton name may have become less common over the past hundred years, today it is used by thousands of families in the United States, a testament to its longevity.

Variations of the surname Pendleton

The surname Pendleton is derived from the English place name Pendleton in the county of Lancashire. It has been used as a surname since the 13th century. Variants of Pendleton are Penninton, Pennant, Pennington, and Pendreck.

Spellings of Pendleton includes Pendleton, Pendiletoun, Pendelton, and Pendiletoun.

Surnames of the same origin include Pembleton, Pempered, Pemperton, Pempeton, Pempton, Pemble, Pepington, and Pendril.

Pendleton is a common family name as well as a given name. It is sometimes also found in some countries or regions outside of the UK. In the US, Pendleton is primarily found in the states of Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. It is also a common name in Canada and Australia. In England, Pendleton is found more frequently in the West Midlands.

The suffix "-ton" is sometimes dropped in certain parts of the world. Therefore, variations of the name are currently Pendel, Penley, Penndell, Pennel, Penning, and Pennant.

Another variant of the name is derived from Burgundy, France, where the name is Pendant (meaning hung or suspended). This spelling can also appear in other forms such as Pendantel, Pendantepand, and Pendantepont. There is also the French spelling Pen-D’Or (golden pen) which reflects the fact that the original Pendleton families were scribes known as ‘pens’ or ‘pen men’.

The main variations of Pendleton today are Pendleton, Pennington, Penley, Penndell, Pennel, Penning, and Pennant.

Famous people with the name Pendleton

  • Bill Pendleton: Professional American Football Player who played from 1961 to 1973.
  • Brent Pendleton: Professional American Football Player who played from 1998 to 2008.
  • Bruce Pendleton: Professional American Football Player who played from 1967 to 1970.
  • Debra Jo Rupp: American Actress best known for being Kitty Forman on the popular sitcom “That 70s Show”
  • Dionne Pendleton: Actress and model who has appeared in films such as “The Way Back” and “The Divorce Party”.
  • Fred Pendleton: American Football Coach who has held positions in college football programs since 1996.
  • Gator Pendleton: American Professional Wrestler who competed from 1996 to 2004.
  • Jeremy Pendleton: American Actor known for his roles in television series such as “Eastwick” and “Chicago PD”.
  • John Pendleton: American Film Director, Writer, and Producer who has made a name for himself in the horror genre.
  • Joseph Pendleton: Politician and former Mayor of Philadelphia from 1972 to 1976.
  • Katie A. Pendleton: Grammy-Nominated Country Singer best known for her hits “You’re Not Here” and “I Love You Goodbye”.
  • Louis Pendleton: Professional American Football Player who played from 1974 to 1976.
  • Mandy Pendleton: American Author and Blogger, known for her writing on nutrition and lifestyle topics.
  • Michael Pendleton: American Singer-Songwriter and Musician who has been nominated for several prestigious awards.
  • Pam Pendleton: Former Professional Rodeo Cowgirl who is the current President of the Women's Professional Rodeo Association.
  • Robert Pendleton: US Army Veteran and Actor who has appeared in a variety of films and television series.
  • Stephen Pendleton: Professional American Football Player who played from 1984 to 1988.
  • Vernon Pendleton: American Politician who served in the US House of Representatives from 1981 to 1983.

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