Recorded as Meldonhall, Mendenhall, Mewdenhall, Mildenhall, Mindenhall and possibly others, this is an English locational surname. Although not absolutely proven, it seems almost certain that the surnames in their various spellings originate from either of two places called Mildenhall, one in Suffolk, and the other in Wiltshire. The former, recorded as Mildenhale in the famous Anglo-Saxon Chronicles of 1050, and as Mitdenehall in the Domesday Book of 1086 derives from the Olde English pre 7th century "aet Middelan hale", meaning "at the middle halh", with halh translating as a stone house! The place in Wiltshire is recorded as "Mildanhald" in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, dated 803 a.d, and means "Milda's valley", with Milda being an early female personal name. Early examples of the surname recordings taken from surviving church registers include Francis Mildenhall, at Hungerford in Berkshire, on June 1st 1588, Sarah Mindenhall who married Ben Gaskin at St Georges chapel, Hanover Square, Westminster, on April 2nd 1810, and another Sarah but this time spelt Mendenhall, who married Henry Bailey at St Martins in the Field, Westminster, on February 1st 1846. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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