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Bow Family History

Bow Name Meaning

English: metonymic occupational name for a maker or seller of bows, from Middle English bow (Old English boga, from bugan ‘to bend’). Before the invention of gunpowder, the bow was an important long-range weapon for shooting game as well as in warfare. Boga is also found as a personal name in Old English, and it is possible that this survived into Middle English and so may lie behind the surname in some instances. In other cases (for example, Richard atte Bowe, 1306), the name is topographic, from the same word in the transferred sense ‘arched bridge’, ‘river bend’, an allusion to their similarity in shape to a drawn bow. Irish: Anglicized form of Gaelic Ó Buadhaigh (see Bogue).

Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press


Similar surnames: Box, Low, Brow, Bos, Boe, Bon, Dow, Rowe, Bo, Bone

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Where is the Bow family from?

You can see how Bow families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Bow family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Bow families were found in the USA in 1880. In 1911 there were 49 Bow families living in Ontario. This was about 40% of all the recorded Bow's in Canada. Ontario had the highest population of Bow families in 1911.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Bow surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Bow ancestors do for a living?

In 1921, Farmer and Income were the top reported jobs for men and women in the CA named Bow. 22% of Bow men worked as a Farmer.

View Census data for Bow | Data not to scale

*We display top occupations by gender to maintain their historical accuracy during times when men and women often performed different jobs.

Top Male Occupations in 1921

  • Farmer
    22%
  • Laborer
    22%
  • Labourer
    19%
  • Cook
    17%

Top Female Occupations in 1921

  • Income
    100%
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What Bow family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 33,000 census records available for the last name Bow. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Bow census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search Canadian census records for Bow

Passenger Lists

There are 7,000 immigration records available for the last name Bow. Passenger lists are your ticket to knowing when your ancestors arrived in Canada, and how they made the journey - from the ship name to ports of arrival and departure.

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Draft Cards

There are 7,000 military records available for the last name Bow. For the veterans among your Bow ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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You've only scratched the surface of Bow family history.

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What is the average Bow lifespan?

Between 1944 and 2003, in the United States, Bow life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1958, and highest in 1999. The average life expectancy for Bow in 1944 was 36, and 80 in 2003.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Bow

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