'Ohhh, that's an unusal name' I hear quite often, especially here in the UK. So a couple of years ago I visited the town where I guess one my ancestors must have come from, after all van Elten simply means from Elten (translated from Dutch). The fact that Elten is directly located on the German/Dutch border should also explain the Dutch-ness of my surname.
My ancestors clearly didn't make it very far as I was born only about half an hour away from Elten.
And here I am trying to lay claim to the town....it somehow didn't work though, I must try harder next time.