First name origins & meanings:

  1. Scottish: From the pool or pit; eleventh president of the United States
  2. Slavic: People

Last name origins & meanings:

  1. Scottish: reduced form of Pollock.
  2. German (of Slavic origin): from an altered pet form of the Slavic personal name Boleslav, composed of the elements bole ‘great’, ‘large’ + slav ‘glory’. This name was a favorite during the Middle Ages among the gentry class in Silesia.
  3. German: ethnic name for a Pole (see Polak).
  4. The American president James Polk (1795–1849) was of Scots-Irish descent. His family reached America from Ireland, where their name had been contracted from Pollok to Polk. The first American bearer, Robert Bruce Polk, emigrated from Ireland to MD in the late 17th century.

This name appears in the following lists: First Ladies, Presidents' Kids, U.S. Presidents

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