An English surname, Sykes comes from the Middle English term ‘syke’ which means a stream in a marshy area. The spelling variations for Sykes include Sike, Syks, Sikes, Sikkes and Siks. In England the earliest Sykes families resided in the Cumberland region. Years later many Sykes families live in Yorkshire and Lancashire. There is a scattering of individuals with the Sykes surname over the rest of England and in eastern Wales. In Scotland the greatest concentration of Sykes families is in the neighboring counties of Peeblesshire, Lanarkshire, Roxburghshire, Midlothian, Clackmannanshire and West Lothian. Within the United States the Sykes families originated in Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, New Jersey, Vermont, Georgia, Mississippi and Alabama. Famous: Paul Sykes (English professional boxer), Roosevelt Sykes (musician), Eric Sykes (English television writer and actor), Christopher Hugh Sykes (English non-fiction author), John Sykes (musician), John H. Sykes (founder of Sykes Enterprises Inc. for business outsourcing), Paul Sykes (folk singer), Wanda Sykes (actress and comic) and Thomas Hardcastle Sykes (19th century owner of Sykes Bleaching Company of England).