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2,395 study surnames with us
and a further 6,089 variant names.

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About the study

My childhood holidays were spent at a variety of seaside resorts in England with an occasional trip to London. I remember that my father would always look in the phone book in the hotel room to check if there were any Mackmans. I recollect that there were Mackmans only in the London phone books and that there were not many of them. In 1988 I thought it would be a good idea to see just how many Mackmans there were in all the phone books in the United Kingdom. Helped by my daughter and one of her friends I spent a couple of hours at the Central Library in York were we found just 99 Mackmans including myself. We subsequently wrote to all the Mackmans we had found and asked if they would be willing to complete a questionnaire. The Mackmans who returned our questionnaire gave us the building blocks that enabled us to build up a picture of how all Mackmans are related to each other and from whom they are descended. The thrust of our research has been to try to establish if there is just one Common Ancestor from whom all Mackmans are descended. It transpires that there are four separate Mackman families whose roots go back to Lincolnshire, Dorset, Ireland and Russia.

Variant names

I have three names registered with the Guild of One-Name Studies: Mackman and its variant, Makeman and Mackmin which is not a variant. I have registered Mackmin as a separate surname.

I also collect all references to the name Mackmain but have not registered it with the Guild as I can find no reference to any living person with the surname "€œMackmain"€.

Historical occurrences of the name

The earliest reference to Mackman is to be found in the baptism records of St John the Baptist Church, Peterborough where Thomas Mackman'€™s son Nicholas was christened on 13 April 1574. I haven'€™t yet established a link between Thomas and the Common Ancestor, James Makeman, who was christened at Gedney Hill, Lincolnshire on 10 January 1747/8.

James Makeman is the Common Ancestor of over 80% of the Mackmans.

The other branches are descended from

  • Francis McMan who was born in Ireland around 1819,
  •  Robert Mackman whose son Robert was christened at St James Church, Poole, Dorset on 30 June 1822.
  •  Lena Drotman who was born in Russia on 15 March 1886. She married four times. Her second husband was Louis Mackman. Lena had three children with Louis. Her first two children took Louis'€™ surname.

Name frequency

The Taliesin Arlein website shows 395 Mackmans in England and Wales for September 2002.

I have a spreadsheet with a list of the names of the 471 living Mackmans that I know about. The total has hovered around 470s mark for many years.

Distribution of the name

The Mackman name is now found across the world. The main concentrations in the United Kingdom continue to be in the Peterborough area with other groups in Leeds, London, Hull and families in other areas. The name is also found in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.


I have gathered all occurrences of the Mackman surname that I can find from:

  •  The GRO Index of Births, Marriages and Deaths for England and Wales from 1837 to 2011
  •  The Indexes of Births, Marriages and Deaths for Scotland from 1855 to 2006
  •  The England and Wales censuses from 1841 to 1911
  •  The published US and Canadian censuses
  •  The International Genealogical Index of England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Australia and South Africa
  •  The Commonwealth War Graves Commission records,
  •  The United States Social Security Death Index
  •  England & Wales National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1861-1941
  •  Phone books for the United States, Canada and Australia
  •  Miscellaneous records including passenger lists, directories, London Gazette, NBI etc.
  • The 1939 Register

I have fallen behind checking the entries in the UK Phone Books mainly because I haven'€™t discovered a new adult English Mackman for years so it hardly seems worth while checking the phone books when I believe that I know who everyone is and how to contact them.