Ray Name Meaning

English (of Norman origin): nickname denoting someone who behaved in a regal fashion or who had earned the title in some contest of skill or by presiding over festivities, from Old French rey, roy ‘king’. Occasionally this was used as a personal name. English: nickname for a timid person, from Middle English ray ‘female roe deer’ or northern Middle English ray ‘roebuck’. English: variant of Rye (1 and 2). English: habitational name, a variant spelling of Wray. Scottish: reduced and altered form of McRae. French: from a noun derivative of Old French raier ‘to gush, stream, or pour’, hence a topographic name for someone who lived near a spring or rushing stream, or a habitational name from a place called Ray. Indian: variant of Rai.

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

Similar surnames: May, Hay, Roy, Kay, Rey, Fay, Bay, Pay, Gay, Ram

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Ray Family Origin

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Ray Family Occupations

What did your Ray ancestors do for a living?

In 1921, Farmer and Student were the top reported jobs for men and women in the CA named Ray. 20% of Ray men worked as a Farmer and 8% of Ray women worked as a Student. Some less common occupations for Americans named Ray were Laborer and Income

View Census data for Ray | Data not to scale

Top Male Occupations in 1921

  • Farmer
  • Cultivateur
  • Labourer
  • Laborer

Top Female Occupations in 1921

  • Student
  • Stenographer
  • Cultivateur
  • Income

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

Ray Historical Records

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Census Record

There are 750,000 census records available for the last name Ray. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Ray 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 51,000 immigration records available for the last name Ray. 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 166,000 military records available for the last name Ray. For the veterans among your Ray ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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Ray Life Expectancy

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Between 1940 and 2004, in the United States, Ray life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1944, and highest in 2004. The average life expectancy for Ray in 1940 was 41, and 74 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Ray

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