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Last name origins & meanings:

  1. English: habitational name from any of various places called Wharton. Examples in Cheshire and Herefordshire are from an Old English river name Wæfer (derived from wæfre ‘wandering’, ‘winding’) + Old English tūn ‘settlement’; another in Lincolnshire has as its first element Old English wearde ‘beacon’ or waroð ‘shore’, ‘bank’; one in the former county of Westmorland (now part of Cumbria) is from Old English hwearf ‘wharf’, ‘embankment’ + tūn.
  2. Richard Wharton (d. 1689) emigrated from England to MA in about 1667, in search of fortune (which he did not achieve) rather than religious freedom.
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