One thing that we one-namers are always interested in is the origin of our name. Where did it come from? What does the name mean? Do we all trace our ancestry back to a single family somewhere in an ancestral landscape, or did the name spring up in several places independently?

The variety of different derivations (always stated as fact) as to the origin of the Shankland name shows that even now we don't have an agreed derivation and source for the name. In fact it seems that every Shankland family has its own theory as to the origin of the name. All that the Shankland One-Name Study can do is to present each account faithfully, without necessarily subscribing to its soundness, and to examine the data available to try to work out what is the most likely. (In this respect the data shown in the "Distribution" section is invaluable.)