An English and Welsh name of Watkins comes from the form spelled Watkin. It can also be a nickname from Middle English name of Walter.
Those who carry the Watkins surname originated from Wales, England and Ireland.
In England the counties of Herefordshire and Warwickshire which are near Wales have higher populations. The counties of Breconshire, Monmouthshire and Galmorgan of Wales have very high listings of Watkins surnames. In Scotland the county of Renfreshire has Watkins families.
The states in the United States with many families with the Watkins name are Ohio, Virginia, , New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee and Illinois.
Famous: Elfreth Watkins (19th century American engineer to preserve steam railroads), Michael W. Watkins (director and actor for films and TV), Carleton Watkins (19thcentury American photographer, especially of California), Maurice Watkins (professional boxer from 1974 to 1980, nicknamed Termite), Samuel R. Watkins (Confederate soldier during Civil War who wrote after-wards a complete memoir of the war; "Company Aytch: Or, a Side Show of the Big Show"), Tuc Watkins (TV actor), William Henry Watkins (Canadian baseball player of the 1880s) and Ian Watkins (British pop singer and actor).