Cotton Family History

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Cotton Name Meaning

English: habitational name from any of numerous places named from Old English cotum (dative plural of cot) ‘at the cottages or huts’ (or sometimes possibly from a Middle English plural, coten). Examples include Coton (Cambridgeshire, Northamptonshire, Staffordshire), Cottam (East Yorkshire, Lancashire, Nottinghamshire), and Cotham (Nottinghamshire). French: from a diminutive of Old French cot(t)e ‘coat (of mail)’ (see Cott).

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

Similar surnames: Colton, Catton, Scotton, Hatton, Cotten, Cott, Tolton, Colston

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Cotton Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Cotton name?

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

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  • England & Wales


  • Ireland & Scotland


  • Cameroon, Congo, & Southern Bantu Peoples


  • Germanic Europe


  • Benin/Togo


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Cotton Family Origin

Where is the Cotton family from?

Cotton Family Occupations

What did your Cotton ancestors do for a living?

In 1881, Coal Miner, Labourer and Farmer were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Cotton. The most common Cotton occupation in the UK was Coal Miner. 4% of Cotton's were Coal Miners. A less common occupation for the Cotton family was Agricultural Labourer.

View Census data for Cotton | Data not to scale

  • Coal Miner

  • Labourer

  • Farmer

  • Agricultural Labourer


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

Cotton Historical Records

What Cotton family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 253,000 census records available for the last name Cotton. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Cotton 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 Cotton

Passenger List

There are 21,000 immigration records available for the last name Cotton. 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.

View all Cotton immigration records

Draft Card

There are 41,000 military records available for the last name Cotton. For the veterans among your Cotton ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Cotton military records

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

Cotton Life Expectancy

What is the average Cotton lifespan?

Between 1942 and 2004, in the United States, Cotton life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1942, and highest in 1998. The average life expectancy for Cotton in 1942 was 30, and 73 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Cotton

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

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