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

Cleary Family History

Cleary Name Meaning

Irish (especially Tipperary): from Ó Cléirigh ‘descendant of Cléireach’ a name meaning ‘clerk’ or ‘cleric’. Ó Cléirigh is a famous learned family in Ireland. The less common surname McCleary formed with the article Mac an Chléirigh ‘son of the cleric’ is a variant. Both Irish names are also commonly Anglicized by translation as Clarke . Scottish: variant of McCleary .

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


Similar surnames: Leary, Clary, Clardy, Mclear, Creary, Geary, Neary, Lear, Keary

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 Cleary family from?

You can see how Cleary families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Cleary family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Cleary families were found in USA in 1880. In 1891 there were 345 Cleary families living in Lancashire. This was about 30% of all the recorded Cleary's in United Kingdom. Lancashire had the highest population of Cleary families in 1891.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Cleary surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Cleary ancestors do for a living?

In 1939, General Labourer and Unpaid Domestic Duties were the top reported jobs for men and women in the United Kingdom named Cleary. 27% of Cleary men worked as a General Labourer and 66% of Cleary women worked as an Unpaid Domestic Duties. Some less common occupations for Americans named Cleary were Incapacitated and Domestic Duties. .

View Census Data for Cleary | 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

  • General Labourer
    27%
  • Builders Labourer
    10%
  • Bricklayer
    5%
  • Incapacitated
    4%

Top Female Occupations In 1939

  • Unpaid Domestic Duties
    66%
  • Unpaid Domestic
    3%
  • Domestic Servant
    3%
  • Domestic Duties
    3%
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Cleary family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 150,000 census records available for the last name Cleary. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Cleary census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search Australian census records for Cleary

Passenger Lists

There are 30,000 immigration records available for the last name Cleary. 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 Cleary immigration records

Draft Cards

There are 22,000 military records available for the last name Cleary. For the veterans among your Cleary ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Cleary military records

You've only scratched the surface of Cleary family history

Discover More

What is the average Cleary lifespan?

Between 1945 and 2004, in the United States, Cleary life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1946, and highest in 2003. The average life expectancy for Cleary in 1945 was 49, and 77 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Cleary

Discover the unique achievements of ancestors in the Cleary family tree

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