History of your Surname
Get access to Bay family records.Start a free trial

Bay Family History

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

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 Bay family from?

You can see how Bay families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Bay family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Bay families were found in the USA in 1880. In 1891 there were 104 Bay families living in London. This was about 36% of all the recorded Bay's in the UK. London had the highest population of Bay families in 1891.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Bay surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Bay ancestors do for a living?

In 1939, Baker (bread) and Unpaid Domestic Duties were the top reported jobs for men and women in the UK named Bay. 34% of Bay men worked as a Baker (bread) and 74% of Bay women worked as an Unpaid Domestic Duties. Some less common occupations for Americans named Bay were House Furniture (master) and Private Means.

View Census data for Bay | 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

  • Baker (bread)
  • Farmer
  • House Furniture (master)

Top Female Occupations in 1939

  • Unpaid Domestic Duties
  • Purse Secretary
  • Waitress
  • Private Means
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Bay family records will you find?

Census Records

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 Australian census records for Bay

Passenger Lists

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

View all Bay immigration records

Draft Cards

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.

View all Bay military records

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

Discover More

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

Discover the unique achievements of ancestors in the Bay family tree

Explore Your Tree
Search for another surname
Start a 14-Day Free Trial