Martin Family History & Genealogy

429,567 biographies and 462 photos with the Martin last name. Discover the family history, nationality, origin and common names of Martin family members.

Martin Last Name History & Origin

Updated Jun 20, 2022


Martin is a common first and last name in European languages, and might be derived from the Roman god Mars. 


Martin is a common first and last name in European languages, and might be derived from the Roman god Mars. 

Name Origin

It derives from "Mars", the god of fertility and war, although it is claimed that "Mars" itself may derive ultimately from the word "mar", meaning "to gleam". The original given name has been used in every state in Europe since the 12th century crusades to free the Holy Land from the Moslems.

Read more: [external link]

Spellings & Pronunciations

There are many patronymic forms such as Martinez (Spanish) or Martenssen (Swedish), and diminutives such as Martineau (France) and Martinelli (Italian). Curiously the Polish spellings of Marcinkowski and Marciszewski are locational, originating from a town called Martin, as is the Czech Martinovsky. Examples of the surname recordings taken from authentic registers of the period include John Martin of Plymouth, England, who was navigator to Sir Francis Drake, on his first "Round the World" voyage of 1577, whilst Christopher Martin was a member of the Pilgrim Fathers in 1620. Suarez Martinez was christened at Asuncion, Mexico, on October 2md 1774, whilst Jack Martinet was registered at Berkeley, California on September 27th 1909, and Jeffrey Lynn Martineau at Los Angelos on April 10th 1948. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter Martin, which was dated 1166, in the charters of the county of Northampton, England, during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

Read more: [external link]

Nationality & Ethnicity

Ireland & Irish In England, Martin is a variation on Marton which was given to people who settled in areas with a geographic boundary.  In France, Martin is one of the common French surnames and is attributed to Saint Martin of Tours.

Famous People named Martin

St. Martin of Tours (France), Steve Martin (actor & comedian) Dean Martin (Actor,comedian,singer)

Early Martins

These are the earliest records we have of the Martin family.


Martin Death Records & Life Expectancy

The average age of a Martin family member is 69.7 years old according to our database of 266,551 people with the last name Martin that have a birth and death date listed.


Other Martin Records


Share memories about your Martin family

Leave comments and ask questions related to the Martin family.

Cher Haile commented on Dec 01, 2002
Richard Martin married Nancy Massingill on March 20, 1804 in Tennessee. By 1810 the family, along with their several children, including son William Zebulon Martin, had once again uprooted, and they left Stewart County, Tennessee. Historically the Martin family elders had migrated from Maryland to Virginia and eventually pushed westward across Tennessee, finally to the banks of the Mississippi River. By 1850 William Zebulon settled there, in remote westward Lauderdale County, Tennessee to log timber and operate saw mills, the long-running traditional family occupation. That same year Zebulon married 19 year-old Lucinda Shoemake, daughter of William and Martha Shoemake. Within the year Lucinda gave birth to a son, Eli Zebulon Martin in 1851, followed by another son named John T., and a daughter she named Martha Elizabeth for her mother. Determined that his children not be loggers and woodsmen, he schooled his children in business, math and music. By 1860, Zebulon had died, and Lucinda remarried to W. A. Mahan, and relocated across the river to Mississippi County, Arkansas. Eli, who for a while used his step-father's surname, eventually became a salesman in the merchantile business. Later he became a haberdasher and dry good merchant, and operated several stores throughout the western Tennessee area. Through long-time family connections, he met the lovely Ellen Louise Williams, a granddaughter of the prominent Absalom Williams, and daughter of David Williams, of the Williams Lumber Mills in Lauderdale County, Tennessee. A lavish May Day wedding was soon held in 1878. The Williams family, who had migrated from Virginia soon after the American Revolution, were among the earliest pioneers to settle Lauderdale County, and had a long tradition in the wood and lumber business there. Eli's brother, John T. Martin, also married into the Williams family, marrying Ellen's sister Eliza V. Williams. Another Williams daughter, Mary Jane Williams, married William C. Brown, a son of John Brown, another of the first founders of Lauderdale County. The Brown, Martin and Williams families were among the first founders of the Methodist community in the area, donating land, wood, and time to the venture. Also large landowners, Absalom Williams, and sons David and Edwin W. and grandson, Thomas, along with cousin Reason "Reek" Wood, the first Sheriff, began development of the area, constructing a general store, a jail, and a circuit court. The Martins built Alston and Martin General Merchantile, and several dry goods stores. By mid-century there was a post office, and several thriving establishments operated by Reek Wood, Seaton Burks, J. T. Burks, Bill Wood, and assorted Martins and Williams. Absalon's son, David Williams married the lovely Elvyann "Van" Mannery Walker in 1842, and they would eventually have nine children and a great number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren who remained in the area. They settled along Williams Switch Road, in what was originally called Williamstown, and became philanthropists, building several schools, churches, a medical clinic and the Williams Opera House, site of the first Public School Commencement 6/8/1894, in which Miss Daisy Williams was Valdictorian. Richard H. McGaughey, M. D., was Ripley's town physician and ran the medical clinic beginning in 1844. His brother John R. McGaughey would marry Martha Harriett Williams, another of David Williams's daughters, in 1870. Ellen, the seventh of David and Van Williams nine surviving children was very close to her siblings, especially to brother Robert A., born in 1858, who married the beautiful Emily Pitts in 1876, and went on to become a member of the firm Palmer and Williams, publishers and owners of the Lauderdale County Enterprise Newspaper, but resigned to run for Mayor of Ripley, a post to which he was elected three times. He resigned as Mayor to become a member of the Tennessee Legislature. He was also Clerk and Master of the Chancery Count, and eventually established the Lauderdale County Bank, and was its chief cashier. Later he became Chairman of the Democratic Executive Committee, a state delegate to the district elections, and an alternate delegate to the Chicago National Convention the same year. Then he was appointed as President of the Board of Education. He and Emily had three sons and four daughters who were much adored by their Aunt Ellen and Uncle Eli Martin. Suddenly in 1908, at the age of 51, Ellen's beloved brother Robert died of complications of Bright's Disease, complicated by a bout of typhoid. Ellen and Eli, who also took up breeding fine Plantation Ponies at their Henning, Tennessee farm in their spare time, had five children. Beulah Zebulon who married John Wesley Blythe of the historically important Blythes of Blytheville, Arkansas, Lillias Gertrude who married Charles Carson Ford and relocated to Chicago, Albertha Williams who married Albert Carroll Cheatham of Blytheville who owned a Tobacco Shop and Billiards Parlour there, Eli Van Louis who graduated from Nelson business College in Memphis, then fought in the Army in the trenches of France of WWI, never married, changed his name, became a writer and moved to Hollywood and died mysteriously there at the age of 44. Stories abounded concerning alleged inflamatory articles that Eli Van Louis had written had led to his demise. Juanita, the youngest child, never married and retired from the FBI after a long career with them in Washington, D. C. Albertha Martin and Albert Carroll Cheatham moved to Shreveport, Louisiana, where he became an executive with the gas company, President of the Chamber of Commerce, and a prominent member of the Methodist Church. They had three children: Albert, Jr., Gordon Martin, and Verlie Louise Cheatham. Albert, Jr. married Lucy Rosemary Robertson, who was a member of one of the first Women's Basketball League, sponsored by Meadows Draughn College. Albert was employed in refrigeration engineering sales. A former Captain in the U. S. Army during WWII who was a gunnery photographer in the Pacific Theater in Japan, and took arial photographs of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, he was also a Mason, a Commander of his VFW Post, and a Shriener in the Clown Unit. Lucy worked until retirement for the U. S. D. A. and was voted Secretary of the Year in 1970. They had two children, Pamela Jean, and Cheryll Anne. Gordon Martin Cheatham served in the Army in Korea, married a woman named Barbara, and had a daughter named Ann. Gordon sadly died in his thirties of cancer. He had adopted two more children while stationed in Germany. Verlie Louise married career Air Force Captain Richard Francis, they never had children, and she worked for the government until her death at age 63.
Jo Martin commented on Dec 01, 2002
James Ausband Martin served in the Civil War. His war records show the following information: At the time of his enlistment he had been residing in Stokes Co., NC as a farmer. He enlisted at Danbury, NC 20 Mar 1862 as Private with Company G., NC 53rd Regiment. The men in Co. G of the 53rd Regiment were known as "The Mountain Grays." His description was given as dark complexion, dark hair and eyes, and his height was 5'7". Roll of Honor gives same data showing his status of enlistment as volunteer with age of 27. National Archives in Washington, DC show his enlistment age at 22/27. This could explain why his military grave marker shows his birth date as 1835 instead of l838. His prisoner of war records show he was captured at Gettysburg on 3 Jul 1863, confined at Fort McHenry, MD for a brief time; transferred to Fort Delaware, DE 9 Jul 1863, arriving there on or about 12 Jul 1863. According to Civil War historians, Fort Delaware was one of the worst prisons for a confederate soldier to find himself in. One of every four prisoners died and all the prisoners suffered from the severe cold weather, the dampness, dysentery, fevers, lice and a host of other ailments. James must have been a very strong man to have endured his imprisonment. He was released 19 Jun 1865. His name appears as signature (his mark) to Oath of Allegiance, subscribed to at Fort Delaware, DE. After the war, James returned to Stokes Co., NC and married Mary Rebecca Moorefield Boaz on 5 Mar 1866. She was the widow of Robert Boaz, who was killed during the Civil War. The 1880 Federal Census of Stokes Co., NC shows James, his wife Rebecca and their five children living in the Peters Creek Township. This area is near the VA/NC state line. The 1900 Federal Census of Stokes Co., NC shows James as a widower, living with his son, William R. and his sister, Susie Martin Frye. Susie was a widow and she and two of her children, Agnes and Robert L. Frye lived with James at this time. They were living in the west division of the Sauratown Township of Stokes Co., NC. In his later years, James lived with his son, William R. Martin, in Tobaccoville, NC. When he died, he was carried by horse and wagon approximately thirty miles back to Walnut Cove, NC to be buried beside his beloved Rebecca.
Beth Pearce commented on Dec 01, 2002
The following story was written by Estelle Martin while living in a nursing home in Amarillo, Texas. She was born in Mississippi. It is her life story. "My parents were Henry and Nancy Lou Ellen Montgomery. I had two brothers and one sister older and four sisters and five brothers younger. When I was nine, we moved to Quanah, Texas and in the spring of 1908 we moved to a farm north of Quanah in the Marshall community. The fall of 1910, we moved back to Mississippi. Our father was a sharecropper and we seldom got to go to school before February or March. That was in a one-room school with one teacher that taught through the eighth grade. In September 1912 we moved back to Texas to the Hoolyann community near Kirkland. There we traded with Furr Mercantile, the original Furr Store. In 1914 we moved seven miles west of Goodlett, Texas and our school was Curryville. In 1920 our father bought a farm two and one half miles southwest of Goodlett. My oldest living brother had gone in the service and was killed in World War I on October 27, 1918. On December 11, 1921 I boarded a train for Abilene, Texas where I entered Draughn’s Business College. I was 21 years old. June, 1922 I went back home to help lay by the crop. In August I got a call from Quanah asking if I would help the county agent close that office. I worked six weeks there and on September 27, 1922 Tom Harman and I were married. We moved to Goodlett the following year and on September 5, 1923 our son, Lyle was born. We moved back to Quanah in 1924 and our daughter, June, was born June 4, 1925. In the year of 1928 we moved to Lubbock and the country was in the depression and jobs were scarce. Tom began work in the harvest the summer of 1929. He ended up in a small town of Gruver just 13 miles west of Spearman. He got a job as a cook in the only cafe. The children and I went back to Goodlett and stayed with my parents until Tom could send for us. On August 1, 1929 we boarded the train, spent the night in Amarillo and the next morning we got on the Rock Island train for Gruver. When we got to Gruver that evening there was no vacancy in the one and only hotel. We spent the night at Uncle Sam Gruver’s home. The next day Tom put up an 8x10 foot tent at the water tower. The 6th of August I was asked to help and learn to operate the telephone office. It turned into a blessing and in February of 1930 the job was mine." for more go to [external link]
Martin Breen commented on Sep 13, 2006
[external link] The republication of rare and out-of-print books provides an excellent way for the general researcher of Irish genealogical history to obtain the reference books needed to delve into otherwise unobtainable scholarly works on Irish history. I have republished books on two of the main ruling classes in Ireland during the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries - namely, the O'Brien and the MacNamara clans. These three books, out of print for over a century, provide a veritable cornucopia of information on two major Irish surnames, the bearers of which have contributed to the vast majority of Irish and Celtic written history. The MacNamaras were at one time powerful overlords of the later mediaeval period, ruling swathes of Counties Clare, Limerick and Tipperary for several centuries in succession Regards from Ireland, Martin Breen [external link]
Lisa Smith commented on May 16, 2010
Joseph John Martin (21 November 1833 – 18 December 1900) was a Republican U.S. Congressman from North Carolina, United States between 1879 and 1881. Born in Williamston in Martin County, North Carolina, Martin attended Williamston Academy and then studied law. He was admitted to the bar in 1859 and became the prosecuting attorney of Martin County. He was elected solicitor for North Carolina's second judicial district in 1868 and was re-elected to that post in 1874. Martin was a member of the Republican party and a delegate to the 1876 Republican National Convention. In 1878, Martin was elected to the U.S. House, defeating incumbent Democrat Jesse Johnson Yeates. Although Martin served most of his two-year term, Yeates successfully contested the election and unseated Martin on January 29, 1881, two months before the expiration of Martin's term. After leaving Congress, Martin returned to the practice of law in Tarboro, North Carolina; he was that town's postmaster from 1897 until his death in 1900. Martin is buried in Williamston Cemetery in his hometown. ~Why weren't his children mentioned~Especially, my grandmother, Cleretta Martin?
Mary Peer commented on Feb 12, 2014
My Grandmother, Birdie Etta Martin(Peer), on her family side settled in a small town called Woodburn, Iowa from Missouri. I been trying to find current Martin family relatives that are connected somehow to this Martin family I'm referring to. These are the names of her father's parents, Marion Thompson Martin and Hannah Josephine Stout. My grandmother father's name is Russia Ferguson Martin. I believe her brothers settled in Colorado and Montana. Though there was one other relative who had came to settle in the state of Wyoming sometime around, I believe, the 1900's? Apparently a well known cowboy in his time. I know all of my Grandmother's family and relatives are no longer around. But I thought I see if there might be maybe just a few who might be around. Would love to connect with actual Martin relatives if all possible. Thank you. Anyone needing more information or have some questions, please let me know. Thank you for reading.
Randi Uhler commented on Jul 30, 2014
My great-great grandmother was Mary Martin, daughter of John H. Martin and Elisabeth Bishop, of Middlesex and Morris Counties in New Jersey. I know some of the children went west, but there was a large family in these counties and in Wantage Township, Sussex County, NJ. There is a very old book on Martin Ancestry at "The Open Library" website: [external link]. Good Hunting!
Mandy Wenzler commented on Oct 18, 2014
My name is Mandy (Martin) Wenzler, my grandparents were Henry Powell Martin, Jr., and Bernice Lee (Raines) (Wilson) Martin. 1970's they moved to Walls, MS in Desoto County, MS. My grandfather had been married to Vera Burchett prior to my grandparents marriage and had five children (Marilyn, Sharon, Henry, Bobby, and Mickey). My grandmother was married to Jewel Wilson and had three children (Conley, Carol, and Diane). My grandparents had two children (Freddie and Lynn). My grandfather worked for Illinois Central Railroad and my grandmother was retired. My grandmothers mom's name was Ida Mae (O'Neil, Raines) Youngblood, at the time of her death and she had three siblings Ernistine Embry Baker, Bill Young blood, and Jimmy Young blood. My grandfather had a brother David and a sister Ellen. He also had a older brother or uncle named Rufus all from Memphis, TN. Any info. Would be greatly appreciated.
Back to Top