Ku Name Meaning

Chinese : variant of Gu 1. Chinese : variant of Gu 2. Chinese : variant of Gu 3. Korean: there are three Chinese characters for the surname Ku. The most common of the three claims thirty-two clans, but only two can be documented. The other two Ku surnames each have one clan, with its own Chinese character. All four of the Ku clans immigrated from China. The clans that use the more common character came in two waves: the first settled in the Nungsong sometime before 945, and the second, which settled in Ch’angwon, arrived in 1224. The name of the immigrant who founded the first of these two clans has been lost; but the name of the second is Ku Chon-yu. Members of these two clans can be found throughout the Korean peninsula, but 45 percent of them live in Kyongsang South province, while 20 percent of them live in Seoul and Kyonggi province. The founder of the clan that uses the other Ku character was named Ku T’ae-rim. He was an emissary for Tang China on his way to Japan when a storm blew his ship onto the shores of Koguryo Korea in 663. He settled in Koguryo territory and subsequently held a post in that government. Koguryo was a Korean kingdom which existed in the northern part of the Korean peninsula from 37 bc to ad 668. Its territory was incorporated into Shilla when the peninsula was unified in 668. Most of the modern-day members of this clan live in Ch’ungch’ong province. Very little is known of the origins of the clan which uses the third Ku character. There are only a few families which still use this character in Korea; they live in Kyongsang province and Kangwon province.

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

Similar surnames: Yu, Ko, Im, Pu, Lu, Ki, Kuk, Hu, Wu, Du

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Ku Family Origin

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Ku Family Occupations

What did your Ku ancestors do for a living?

In 1940, Laborer was the top reported job for people in the US named Ku. 82% of Ku men worked as a Laborer

View Census data for Ku | Data not to scale

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Top Male Occupations in 1940

  • Laborer
  • Farmer

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

Ku Historical Records

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Census Record

There are 8,000 census records available for the last name Ku. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Ku census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

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Passenger List

There are 3,000 immigration records available for the last name Ku. 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 Card

There are 4,000 military records available for the last name Ku. For the veterans among your Ku ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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Ku Life Expectancy

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Between 1957 and 2004, in the United States, Ku life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1972, and highest in 2000. The average life expectancy for Ku in 1957 was 64, and 73 in 2004.

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