History of your Surname
Get access to Will family records.Start a 14-Day Free Trial

Will Family History

Will Surname Meaning

English: from the Middle English personal name Will a short form of William . This surname is now commonly found in Scotland in Aberdeenshire Angus and Kincardineshire. English: topographic name for someone who lived by a spring or stream from Middle English wel wel(l)e wille in a southwestern dialect form. This surname is found predominantly in the south and southwestern parts of the country. Compare Well English: nickname from Middle English iwil wil(l)e ‘agreeable pleasing’. German: from a short form of any of various ancient Germanic personal names beginning with wil ‘will desire’.

Source: Dictionary of American Family Names 2nd edition, 2022


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

Search for a relative to learn more about your family history.

Hint: Try searching for a relative alive in 1940.

Black & white image of a young woman scientist

Where is the Will family from?

You can see how Will families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Will family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Will families were found in USA in 1880. In 1891 there were 201 Will families living in London. This was about 22% of all the recorded Will's in United Kingdom. London had the highest population of Will families in 1891.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Will surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Will ancestors do for a living?

In 1939, Medical Practitioner and Unpaid Domestic Duties were the top reported jobs for men and women in the United Kingdom named Will. 25% of Will men worked as a Medical Practitioner and 70% of Will women worked as an Unpaid Domestic Duties. Some less common occupations for Americans named Will were General Labourer and Cook. .

View Census Data for Will | Data not to scale

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

Top Male Occupations In 1939

  • Medical Practitioner
    25%
  • Chartered Accountant
    25%
  • Bank Official
    17%
  • General Labourer
    17%

Top Female Occupations In 1939

  • Unpaid Domestic Duties
    70%
  • Unpaid Domestic
    5%
  • Private Means
    4%
  • Cook
    4%
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Will family records will you find?

Census Records

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 UK census records for Will

Passenger Lists

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 Cards

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

Discover More

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

Discover the unique achievements of ancestors in the Will family tree

Explore Your Tree

Browse profiles of historical people with the Will last name

Search for another surname
Enter last name/surname
Start a 14-Day Free Trial