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Tarkington is a name, which was used by the Vikings, an ancient Scandinavian people who migrated to England and then to the U.S.. They settled in Maryland, then Virginia, and later moved to Tyrrell County, North Carolina. Later they migirated to Texas and Tennessee. Others went to Indiana and Kentucky.

John Tarkington, Sr., his wife Prudence, their son John, Jr. and wife Martha, and their son William Joshua came to America in about 1668. They settled on of land in Baltimore County, Maryland. The plantation was named "The Grove".

John Tarkington was one of the original settlers of Maryland. He began to accumulate property by getting settlers to move to a certain locality. In 1675 he transported a group into the province to inhabit Cecil County and obtained for himself.

John Tarkington had a son Samuel, whom it is said was killed or kidnapped by the American Indians.

Booth Tarkington's ancestors migrated through Tyrrell County, North Carolina and then on to Indiana.

Tarkington (automobile)

The Tarkington automobile was a two-door, six-cylinder, gas-powered car built in the early 1920s in Rockford, Illinois.

Joseph Arthur Tarkington tried very hard to get his car into mass-production, but was unsuccessful. The company was incorporated in January 1920 with $500,000 of initial funding. It took three years before a prototype was displayed to the public. Although well received by the press, additional capital needed for mass production was not forthcoming and the company was dissolved on June 1, 1923.

Joseph filed several patents for the car, and there are stories that he was a pioneer in many things related to the automobile, albeit never receiving any credit. Here is an excerpt from the family tree website of Karl Swenson, a man who built the Tarkington with Joseph:

Carl was one of the people who tried to produce an automobile by the name of the Tarkington. He and his dad and Mr. Tarkington worked at this and had 6 cars made. They failed to get the funding needed to get them mass-produced so had to quit the project. Carl was an avid golfer and being the engineer he was, worked very hard to perfect his golf swing.

All six cars produced by the company were eventually scrapped.