Brown Family History

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Brown Name Meaning

English, Scottish, and Irish: generally a nickname referring to the color of the hair or complexion, Middle English br(o)un, from Old English brun or Old French brun. This word is occasionally found in Old English and Old Norse as a personal name or byname. Brun- was also a Germanic name-forming element. Some instances of Old English Brun as a personal name may therefore be short forms of compound names such as Brungar, Brunwine, etc. As a Scottish and Irish name, it sometimes represents a translation of Gaelic Donn. As an American family name, it has absorbed numerous surnames from other languages with the same meaning.

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

Similar surnames: Brow, Crown, Brun, Bruin, Braun, Bjorn, Brin, Lown, Rohn, Biron

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Brown Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Brown name?

These results combine data from everyone in the AncestryDNA® database with the last name Brown. The Ancestry® ethnicity regions shown are top five most common on average for these people.

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  • England & Wales


  • Ireland & Scotland


  • Germanic Europe


  • Cameroon, Congo, & Southern Bantu Peoples


  • Benin/Togo


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Brown Family Origin

Where is the Brown family from?

Brown Family Occupations

What did your Brown ancestors do for a living?

In 1881, the most common Brown occupation in Canada was Farmer. 32% of Brown's were Farmers. A less common occupation for the Brown family was Servant. Farmer, Labourer and School were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Brown.

View Census data for Brown | Data not to scale

  • Farmer

  • Labourer

  • School

  • Servant


Census records can tell you a lot of little known facts about your Brown ancestors, such as occupation. Occupation can tell you about your ancestor's social and economic status.

Brown Historical Records

What Brown family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 9 million census records available for the last name Brown. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Brown census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search 1881 Canadian census records for Brown

Passenger List

There are 1 million immigration records available for the last name Brown. 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.

View all Brown immigration records

Draft Card

There are 1 million military records available for the last name Brown. For the veterans among your Brown ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Brown military records

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

Brown Life Expectancy

What is the average Brown lifespan?

Between 1940 and 2004, in the United States, Brown life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1944, and highest in 2003. The average life expectancy for Brown in 1940 was 40, and 72 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Brown

An unusually short lifespan might indicate that your Brown ancestors lived in harsh conditions. A short lifespan might also indicate health problems that were once prevalent in your family. The SSDI is a searchable database of more than 70 million names. You can find birthdates, death dates, addresses and more.

Famous Brown Family Ancestors

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