Shelby Family History

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Shelby Name Meaning

English: of uncertain origin; perhaps a variant of Selby, or a habitational name from an unidentified place named with the northern Middle English elements schele ‘hut’ + by ‘settlement’, ‘farm’ (Old Norse býr).

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

Similar surnames: Selby, Hemby, Bielby, Welby, Smeby, Melby, Shell, Shepley, Shelley

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Shelby Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Shelby name?

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


  • Benin/Togo


  • Germanic Europe


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Shelby Family Origin

Where is the Shelby family from?

Shelby Family Occupations

What did your Shelby ancestors do for a living?

In 1881, the most common Shelby occupation in the UK was Agricultural Labourer. 15% of Shelby's were Agricultural Labourers. A less common occupation for the Shelby family was Coal Miner. Agricultural Labourer, Annuitant and Assurance Agent were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Shelby.

View Census data for Shelby | Data not to scale

  • Agricultural Labourer

  • Annuitant

  • Assurance Agent

  • Coal Miner


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

Shelby Historical Records

What Shelby family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 44,000 census records available for the last name Shelby. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Shelby 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 Shelby

Passenger List

There are 2,000 immigration records available for the last name Shelby. 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 Shelby immigration records

Draft Card

There are 13,000 military records available for the last name Shelby. For the veterans among your Shelby ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Shelby military records

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

Shelby Life Expectancy

What is the average Shelby lifespan?

Between 1944 and 2004, in the United States, Shelby life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1944, and highest in 2000. The average life expectancy for Shelby in 1944 was 28, and 75 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Shelby

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

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