Will Family History

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Will Name Meaning

Scottish and northern English: from the medieval personal name Will, a short form of William, or from some other medieval personal names with this first element, for example Wilbert or Willard. English: topographic name for someone who lived by a spring or stream, Middle English wille (from wiell(a), West Saxon form of Old English well(a) ‘spring’). The surname is found predominantly in the south and southwestern parts of the country. German: from a short form of any of the various Germanic personal names beginning with wil ‘will’, ‘desire’.

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

Similar surnames: Gill, Hill, Wall, Mill, Well, Bill, Wild, Dill, Wilk, Wills

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Will Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Will name?

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

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  • England & Wales


  • Germanic Europe


  • Ireland & Scotland


  • Eastern Europe & Russia


  • Sweden


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Will Family Origin

Where is the Will family from?

Will Family Occupations

What did your Will ancestors do for a living?

In 1881, the most common Will occupation in the UK was Farmer. 7% of Will's were Farmers. A less common occupation for the Will family was Farm Servant. Farmer, Labourer and Annuitant were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Will.

View Census data for Will | Data not to scale

  • Farmer

  • Labourer

  • Annuitant

  • Farm Servant


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

Will Historical Records

What Will family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 98,000 census records available for the last name Will. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Will 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 Will

Passenger List

There are 17,000 immigration records available for the last name Will. 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 Will immigration records

Draft Card

There are 23,000 military records available for the last name Will. For the veterans among your Will ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Will military records

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

Will Life Expectancy

What is the average Will lifespan?

Between 1943 and 2004, in the United States, Will life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1961, and highest in 2000. The average life expectancy for Will in 1943 was 54, and 76 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Will

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

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