Bay Name Meaning

English, French, and Dutch: nickname for someone with chestnut or auburn hair, from Middle English, Old French bay, bai, Middle Dutch bay ‘reddish brown’ (Latin badius, used originally of horses). English: from the Middle English personal name Baye, Old English Beaga (masculine) or Beage (feminine). Scottish: reduced form of McBeth. German: from the Germanic personal name Baio. The name is also found in Denmark and Norway, where it may be a short form of German Bayer or from baygh, originally a loan word from French denoting a type of fabric.

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

Similar surnames: Hay, May, Kay, Ray, Gay, Day, Pay, Fay, Say, Bau

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Bay Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Bay name?

These results combine data from everyone in the AncestryDNA® database with the last name Bay. 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


  • Eastern Europe & Russia


  • Sweden


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Bay Family Origin

Where is the Bay family from?

Bay Family Occupations

What did your Bay ancestors do for a living?

In 1881, Laborer, Labourer and A G Laborer were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Bay. The most common Bay occupation in the UK was Laborer. 10% of Bay's were Laborers. A less common occupation for the Bay family was Block Silk Printer.

View Census data for Bay | Data not to scale

  • Laborer

  • Labourer

  • A G Laborer

  • Block Silk Printer


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

Bay Historical Records

What Bay family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 50,000 census records available for the last name Bay. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Bay census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search 1891 UK census records for Bay

Passenger List

There are 8,000 immigration records available for the last name Bay. Passenger lists are your ticket to knowing when your ancestors arrived in the UK, and how they made the journey - from the ship name to ports of arrival and departure.

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Draft Card

There are 33,000 military records available for the last name Bay. For the veterans among your Bay 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 Bay family history.

Bay Life Expectancy

What is the average Bay lifespan?

Between 1944 and 2004, in the United States, Bay life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1953, and highest in 2000. The average life expectancy for Bay in 1944 was 27, and 77 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Bay

An unusually short lifespan might indicate that your Bay 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 Bay Family Ancestors

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