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Akins Genealogy and Akins Family History Information

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Profiles

  • Agnew Akins (1910 - 1991)
  • Anne Moore (1688 - 1728)
  • Arthur Bell Akins (1889 - 1955)
    Birth: Jan. 13, 1889 Death: Dec. 3, 1955 Source: City of Shawnee Family links: Spouse: Elizabeth T Akins (1891 - 1988)* Calculated relationship Burial: Fairview Cemetery Shawnee P...
  • Rev Edmond Thomas Akins (1813 - 1887)
    Birth: Sep. 19, 1813 Georgia, USA Death: Jan. 2, 1887 Fayette County Alabama, USA Husband of Sarah Ann Veasy Burial: Non-Cemetery Burial Specifically: Location of burial not known at this time ...
  • Elizabeth Talitha Akins (1891 - 1988)
    Birth: Jan. 29, 1891 Death: Apr. 6, 1988 Family links: Spouse: Arthur B Akins (1889 - 1955) Burial: Fairview Cemetery Shawnee Pottawatomie County Oklahoma, USA Created by: MillieBelle R...

About the Akins surname

Akin is found as a place-name in the west coast of Scotland on the Hebridean Isle of Skye. There in the 13th century, the Viking leader King Hakon IV of Norway swept with his invading army in a fleet of longboats on his way to the final defeat of the Norsemen at the hands of Alexander III, King of Scots, at the battle of Largs in 1263 A.D. to commemorate his passage through this region, the narrow strait between the Isle of Skye and the Scottish mainland was afterwards known as Kyle Akin, from the Gaelic Caol Àcainn meaning "the Strait of Hakon" in the native Celtic language of the Scottish people. This area is home to the Skye village of Kyleakin, named for the strait on which it is located. Begun as a planned community in 1811, the area is also the site of Dun Akin castle, an 11th century fortress, now in ruins, long held by the Mackinnon Clan through the marriage of their ancestral chief, Fingon or "Findanus," to a Norse princess known as "Saucy Mary," daughter of King Hakon I of Norway. According to tradition it is through their younger son, Eachann or "Acainus," that the Akins clan descends.

As a surname, the first recorded appearance of its use occurs in A Calendar of Documents Relating to Scotland preserved in Her Majesty's Public Record Office, London, which entry bears the date November 20, 1405, and reads: "Warrant to the Chancellor, - On the petition of John Hadyngton and John of Akyne, Scottish merchants, showing how they during the late truce were on their voyage to Scotland when a barge and a balyngere of war with Laurence Tuttebury of Hulle and his people made them prisoners on 5th September last, with goods worth 500 marks, and kept them in Hull for eight weeks"

Other instances of its use occur in the early records of Scotland where the surname is seen to have undergone a variety of transformations in spelling, accounting for the many variant forms of the name still seen today. Among these early records we find mention of William Ackin, who was a witness in the parish of Brechin in the year 1476. George Aczin appears in Lanarkshire in 1498. John Eckin was a tenant under the Bishop of Aberdeen in 1511. John Ackyne served as bailie of Stirling in 1520. Robert Aykkyne was admitted to the burgess of Aberdeen in 1529. Bessie Aiken of Leith was found guilty of Witchcraft in 1597, narrowly escaping execution. A Covenanter named John Aiken fought in the Battle of Bothwell Bridge in 1679. Alexander Aiken of Glasgow was listed as a pipe-maker in Hearth Tax rolls for 1690. Alexander Aiken of Bo'ness, West Lothian, was among the Scots colonists who took part in the ill-fated Darien expedition in 1699. Rev. John Aikin, born in 1713, the son of a London linen-draper from Kirkcudbright, Scotland, was a Unitarian divine known for his role as a teacher at the dissenting academy of Kibworth, and as the patriarch of a family long noted for their many contributions to British literature and science. Among the many friends of Scotland's national poet, Robert Burns, was Robert Aiken, an Ayrshire lawyer, who Burns referred to as his "first kind patron," and mentioned in a number of his works including the prelude to The Cottar's Saturday Night, and Holy Willie's Prayer, as well as his Epitaph for Robert Aiken, Esq. and The Farewell. Burn's poem An Epistle to a Young Friend was written to the lawyer's son, Andrew Hunter Aiken. An unusual coincidence occurred on 18 October, 1872, when a brigantine cargo ship named the William Akins sailing from the port of Belfast to the River Clyde ran aground on the rocks north of the ferry at Kyleakin, Scotland, where the ship became stranded near the very spot where the surname Akins first originated centuries earlier.

In Ireland the name is common only in Ulster, where the Scottish immigrants settled in the 17th century; but here new variations in spelling began to be seen. Aikins in Co. Armagh; Akins in Co. Monaghan; Eaken in Co. Tyrone; Eakin in Counties Derry and Down; Eakins in Co. Cavan; Ekin in Co. Donegal; and Ekins in Co. Sligo. In Co. Antrim where the name was most common, it was found to be most concentrated in the area northwest of Ballymena in the mid 19th century. William Ekyn was a lessee on the Cunningham estate in Ulster in 1613. Robert Aickeene is listed in a muster roll of the Duke of Lennox's men in Raphoe, County Donegal, Ireland in 1630. Dr. Joseph Aiken published a poetic work in 1699 entitled Londonderias, Or a Narrative of the Siege of Londonderry.

When the British government began to oppress the Scots colonists who had settled in Northern Ireland with heavy taxes and religious persecution, many of them left fleeing to North America as a safe haven where they might start new lives for themselves. It was in this way that many members of the Clan Akins came to America. Among the earliest of these was John Aekin, a colonist brought over in 1645 by John Rode who held a royal patent for land in Warwick Co., Virginia. John Acken was brought to Virginia in 1653 by Secretary of State, Col. William Clayborne. James Ekin was one of 17 "Irish persons" brought to Henrico Co., Virginia by William Walthall in 1657. David Akin of Aberdeen was an early settler of Newport, Rhode Island arriving by 1662. James Akin received a royal patent granting him 250 acres of land in Henrico Co., Virginia in 1665. Three brothers, James, William, and Edward Aiken, were among a number of Scots-Irish colonists who established the town of Londonderry, New Hampshire, settling there in 1722. The Rev. Samuel Eakin (1742-1784), a graduate of Princeton University, was an early Presbyterian minister in colonial Pennsylvania and Delaware who supported the cause of American independence during the Revolutionary War. William Aiken, born in Ballymena, Ireland, in 1779, was one of eighteen siblings and cousins who immigrated to America when he was ten years old; settling in Fairfield Co., South Carolina. He became the president of the South Carolina Canal and Railroad Company in 1827 and until his death in 1831, was one of the wealthiest men in the United States. His son, William Aiken, Jr., was elected as Governor of South Carolina in 1844 and served as a United States Senator from 1851-1857.

According to the 2000 United States Census, the total number of individuals bearing the Clan name in its three most common forms accounts for some 37,252 persons. The spelling of Akins being the most usual, with a count of 16,860 individuals, followed by Aiken, with 12,014 persons, and Akin with 8,378 people bearing that form of the name.