Recorded as Maplebeck and Mapplebeck, this is an English residential surname. It is from the tiny village of Mapplebeck in the county of Nottinham, whose population upto quite recently was only seventy two! This suggests that at some point in history, probably in the 18th century, the village was 'cleared' of most of its inhabitants in order to facilitate sheep farming, and hence the production of wool. This was at a time when demand was growing rapidly with the new Industrial Revolution (1740 - 1914). Sheep required far few workers than the usuall mixed or arable farming, and by turning people off the tenanted lands, the land owners were not only able to reduce their wage bill, but they gained access to the common lands used by the former tenants. There were other reasons such as plague, coastal erosion, and even war, but sheep farming was the usual reason. The name means the maple trees by the stream, and the first recordings are believed to be those of Ricardus de Maplebeck and his wife Beatrix in the Poll Tax registers for the county of Yorkshire in 1379, whilst Adam de Mappelbeck appears in the same registers.
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