Surname Smitherman - Meaning and Origin
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Smitherman: What does the surname Smitherman mean?
The surname Smitherman is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is an occupational name for a blacksmith, deriving from the Old English pre 7th Century "smith" meaning "to smite or strike" and "mann", a man. Occupational surnames originally denoted the actual occupation followed by an individual. The practice of adopting such surnames began in the 13th century and became widespread in England.
A "blacksmith" was an important occupation for hundreds of years, as they were responsible for crafting tools, horse shoes, weapons and other valuable items of metal. As such, surnames related to it, like Smitherman, would have been common in communities of varying size. There might be various spellings of the name, including Smithman, Smytheman, and others, due to illiteracy and regional dialects during the time when spelling standardization was not in place.
This surname spread to various parts of England and later to other countries like the United States, Canada and Australia with emigration. Today, there are several rules that can be found among these countries bearing the surname Smitherman.
Smitherman: Where does the name Smitherman come from?
The last name Smitherman is most commonly found in the United States today. Specifically, it has become most popular in the southern states such as Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama. Although the Smitherman surname is widely dispersed throughout the country, the highest frequency of people with that surname resides in these three states.
In Mississippi and Alabama, the Smitherman name is found in the highest concentration. Across both states, many cities, such as Dallas, Selma, and Marietta, all host a large Smitherman population. In Louisiana, the large majority of Smithermans are found primarily in New Orleans and Baton Rouge.
Outside of the United States, only a few Smithermans reside in the countries of the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. However, the last name is much less common in these areas than in the United States.
The Smitherman surname is most likely of English origins. Dating back to the 16th century, it was originally an occupational surname derived from people who repaired or forged tools. It can also be a patronymic surname derived from "Smith". Due to the popularity of the surname Smith, many Smithermans adapt their last name in order to differentiate themselves.
Although the Smitherman surname is not especially prominent today, it is still the primary family name of many throughout the United States. It's recent popularity has grown in the previous two centuries and is likely to continue to grow in the years to come.
Variations of the surname Smitherman
The surname Smitherman is a patronymic or ancestral surname, which is derived from the given name "Smith".
Over time and through transmission, there have been many variants and spellings of the surname Smitherman, including: Smiterman, Smytherman, Smithersman, Smithersmann, Smitherson, Smithman, and Smithmann.
Spelling variants of Smitherman also rise from the practice of writing spoken language. For instance, “Smitherman” may have been written down as “Smidherman” and “Smitheroon”. Other spelling variations include Smidrum, Smitreman, Smitheram, Smitherum, Smitherama, Smitherum, Smithem, Smithers, Smithresa, Smithrass, and Smitherston.
The surname Smitherman may have originated in different parts of the world, leading to alternative surnames such as Schneiderman in Germany and other Germanic countries as well as Smitman in Dutch speaking countries.
It is also common to find that people with the same surname can have various spelling variations due to the signatures or names that they signed in legal documents. All of these are considered to be variations of the basic Smitherman surname. Therefore, it should be noted that the range of surnames and spelling variations is quite extensive in the Smitherman name. Furthermore, variations of the surname can also be found in other parts of the English-speaking world, with names similar in origin such as Smith-Man in the US and Smithers in England.
Famous people with the name Smitherman
- Gale Smitherman: A contemporary Christian singer, composer, and author.
- Joseph Smitherman: An Alabama politician and the longest-serving mayor of Selma from 2000 to 2020.
- Rose Marie Smitherman: A pioneering Black judge, the first African American woman to serve on a federal appeals court in Alabama.
- Sam Smitherman: A professional boxer who held the British and Commonwealth middleweight titles in the 1970s.
- Julie Smitherman: An actor and producer with credits in The X-Files and Home Improvement.
- Richard Smitherman: An American musician and well-known session drummer, notably with jazz saxophonist Charlie Rouse.
- Thomas Smitherman: An American actor, best known for his role in the film ‘Roseanne’ and the television series ‘Grey’s Anatomy’.
- Bruce Smitherman: A former English footballer who made over 500 appearances in the Football League for Walsall.
- William Smitherman: An American politician who served as the chairman of the Alabama Republican Party.
- Nate Smitherman: A former American professional football player who played running back in the National Football League.
- William H. Smitherman, Jr.: A retired Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Marine Corps, and a Republican politician who represented Alabama's 11th House district in the Alabama House of Representatives from 1994 to 2006.