Whitehurst Family History & Genealogy

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Whitehurst Surname History

Up unto the time of the Norman Invasion of 1066, the Staffordshire region of England was populated with various tribes including the Saxons, who had moved a whole nation of people from Northern Germany to England; the Angles, a tribe from the southern part of Germany and from which England derived it's name; and the Danes from Denmark.

After William the Conqueror took the throne of England, French settlers came to live all over the lands. By the time the Whitehurst surname began to show up in writings and documents in the thirteenth century, the area around the "white woods" outside of the village of Dilhorne would be made up of people from many different nationalities, all using the phrase de Whitehurst after their given names, such as "William of Whitehurst from Staffordshire." With so many bloodlines eventually using the same surname, the Whitehurst family line can claim no one genetic origin. We go back to Germany, France, Scandanavia, and who knows where else.

But this one thing we do know, we are proud of our family heritage, and though the Whitehursts have faced extreme hardship as they pushed away from their island to explore the world, we faced that challenge strongly and have survived!

The Whitehurst family is from England, specifically an area of England called Staffordshire which is known for its white wooded hills. (The surname Whitehurst means "white wood" or "white wooded hills".)  There are numerous variations of the spelling of "Whitehurst", some of which are Whitehurst, Whitehest, Whiteherst, Whithurst, Whitherst, Whyteherst, Whytehurst, and Whitus.  For more on the Whitehurst family, read on.  If you have knowledge to add about the family, please do so.

Whitehurst Family Tree

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Famous People named Whitehurst

Some famous people in the Whitehurst family are:

  • William Whitehurst - The first Whitehurst to cross the Atlantic, landing in Virginia in 1636
  • John Whitehurst (1713-1788) - English clockmaker and scientist
  • Simon Whitehurst (1755-1848) - American Revoluntioinary War Hero
  • George William Whitehurst (1891-1974) - U.S. Federal Judge
  • Rob Whitehurst - American production sound mixer for movies, including Facing The Giants, Fireproof, and Courageous
  • Clinton Whitehurst - American economist
  • George Whitehurst - American Congressman
  • Henry Purefoy Whitehurst Jr. - U.S. Navy sailor killed in 1942 in a fierce Japanese attack, eponym of the USS Whitehurst (DE-634)
  • William “Billy” Whitehurst - English professional footballer
  • Charlie Whitehurst - San Diego Chargers quarterback
  • Grover "Russ" Whitehurst - Former director of the Institute of Education Sciences within the U.S. Department of Education
  • Jim Whitehurst - President and CEO of Red Hat software
  • Stuart Whitehurst - Expert Appraiser on PBS Network's Antiques Roadshow
  • G. William Whitehurst - U.S. House of Representatives, Virginia - ret
  • Frederic Whitehurst - Whistle blowing FBI Supervisory Special Agent - ret.
  • H.C. Whitehurst - Designer of the Whitehurst Freeway in Washington, D.C.
  • Wally Whitehurst - former baseball pitcher for the New York Mets, San Diego Padres, and the New York Yankees
  • Steven Whitehurst - African American author, poet, and educator
  • Dan Whitehurst - Former mayor of Fresno, California
  • Emily Whitehurst - Vocalist Agent M of the punk band Tsunami Bomb
  • Logan Whitehurst (1977-2006) - Founding member of The Velvet Teen

Click here to add your own famous Whitehursts.

Whitehurst Country of Origin, Nationality, & Ethnicity

The surname of Whitehurst, and all its alternate spellings, has England as it's country of orgin. It combines two Old English words meaning "white trees" or "white woods" and was originally a description of a region of white wooded hills in Staffordshire, England. The surname of Whitehurst gets it's origin from a region of England known for its white barked trees. The component elements of the name are the Old English pre 7th Century "hwit", (Medieval English "whit"), which means "white", plus, "hyrst", which is a wood or wooded hill. The region of Whitehurst was a medieval settlement just outside of Dilhorne, a village in Staffordshire, England, known for its white-barked trees. Prior to surnames, people generally indentified themselves either by paternal or regional referrence, such as "de Whitehurst" in Staffordshire. An example of this is Hugo de Whitehurst who is mentioned in documents dated 1250 and 1281. Eventually the "de" or "of" was dropped and the region became the people's surname. This of course would involve large families of differenting genetic origins, all claiming the same surname, leading to the muddying of specific historical origins. After Whitehursts traveled to America in 1636 and the family line expanded, many Whitehurst families in the southern colonies would own slaves. It was common practice for slaves to take on the surname of their owners and this is how African Americans came to possess the surname of Whitehurst.

Whitehurst Meaning & Etymology

The surname Whitehurst gets it's origin from a region of England known for its white barked trees. The component elements of the name are the Old English pre 7th Century "hwit", (in Medieval English it's "whit"), which means "white", plus, "hyrst", which is a wood or wooded hill.

Whitehurst Life Expectancy

According to our database of 3,171 people with the last name Whitehurst that have a birth and death date listed:

Life Expectancy


Most Common Whitehurst First Names

According to our database of 4,352 people with the last name Whitehurst that have a first name listed, these are the most common first names:

  • James 3.6%
  • William 3.0%
  • John 2.3%
  • Mary 1.9%
  • George 1.9%
  • Robert 1.4%
  • Charles 1.3%
  • Thomas 1.0%
  • Joseph 0.9%
  • Edward 0.9%
  • David 0.9%
  • Elizabeth 0.7%
  • Roy 0.6%
  • Richard 0.6%
  • Walter 0.6%
  • Willie 0.6%
  • Margaret 0.6%
  • Ruth 0.6%
  • Dorothy 0.5%
  • Paul 0.5%
  • Annie 0.5%
  • Earl 0.5%
  • Michael 0.5%
  • Helen 0.5%
  • J 0.5%
  • Clarence 0.4%
  • Samuel 0.4%
  • Harold 0.4%
  • Ethel 0.4%
  • Frank 0.4%
  • Alice 0.4%
  • Frances 0.4%
  • Henry 0.4%
  • Raymond 0.4%
  • Kenneth 0.4%
  • Ruby 0.4%
  • Marie 0.4%
  • Harry 0.3%
  • Mildred 0.3%
  • W 0.3%
  • Patricia 0.3%
  • Jesse 0.3%
  • Anna 0.3%
  • Bessie 0.3%
  • Herbert 0.3%
  • Leon 0.3%
  • Albert 0.3%
  • Irene 0.3%
  • Virginia 0.3%
  • Louise 0.3%

Whitehurst Pronunciation & Spelling Variations

There are many spelling variations of the surname Whitehurst, even within the same family units. This can be atributed to various reasons but one is that not everyone in the early days of a family's origins was literate. Most people who could write somewhat, would try to spell phonetically, or how it sounded to them. So the name Whitehurst has many alternate spellings which include: Whitehurst, Whitehest, Whiteherst, Whiteurst, Whithurst, Whitherst, Whyteherst, Whytehurst, Whitus, etc.

Last names similar to Whitehurst

Whitehurste, Whitehurst Judgehays, Whitehurstkelly, Whitehurststacy, Whitehurt, Whitehurth, Whitehurts, Whitehus, Whitehusrt, Whitehust, Whiteialfred, Whiteiar, Whiteiarthur, Whiteicalf, Whiteicarl, Whiteid, Whiteield, Whiteifalterrr, Whiteifr, Whiteig