The surname of GATHOUSE was a locational name 'the dweller at the gate of a monastery or church'. The name was originally brought into England in the wake of the Norman Invasion of 1066, and GATHUS (without surname) appears to be the first of the name on record in 1086. Habitation names, which are by far the largest group, usually denoted where the original bearer of the name held his land, and where he actually lived. These local surnames derive (with a few occasional exceptions) from English, Scottish or French places, and were originally preceded by a preposition such as 'atte' or 'bye'. The earliest local surnames of French origin are chiefly from Normandy, particularly from the departments of Calvados, Eure, Seine-Inferieure and La Manche, although some Frenchmen, arriving in England early acquired surnames from English places. Local names may derive from the manor held, the place of residence, and occasionally from a sign like an Inn or Tavern, or a particularly unusual shape of rock, hill, tree, stream or river. Many of the early names recorded in medieval documents denote noble families but many also indicate migration from the continent during, and in the wake of, the Norman invasion of 1066. There was a constant stream of merchants, workmen and others arriving in England during this time. In 1086 the Record of Great Inquisition of lands of England, their extent, value, ownership and liabilities was made by order of William The Conqueror. It is known as the Domesday Book. Other records of the name mention John atte Gate who was recorded in the year 1273 in County Norfolk. Johannes atte Gate of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Robert Gathus of County Lancashire was documented in the year 1400. Later instance of the name mention John Fox Gatehouse who was listed in the Wills at Lancashire in the year 1678. George Allen married Margaret Gatehouse at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1774.
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