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Pye Family History

Pye Surname Meaning

English (north-West Midlands Lancashire Yorkshire and Norfolk): nickname from Middle English (Old French) pie ‘magpie’ which could be given to someone who wore black and white clothing had grey-streaked dark hair or had a loud chattering voice and impertinent behaviour or was cunning or sly. The uncomplimentary senses derive from the bird's behavior and are recorded uses of the word in Middle English and early Modern English. English: occasionally perhaps a topographic or habitational name referring to a house or inn named Pie ‘magpie’. There were two London taverns so named but whether these gave rise to a hereditary surname is not known. Surnames derived from house and inn signs are rare in English. English (of Norman origin): nickname from Anglo-Norman French and Middle English pie ‘merciful compassionate kind’ a variant of Old French Anglo-Norman French piu peu; see Pew (2). Welsh English (Herefordshire): apparently an Anglicized a shortened form of Welsh ap Hugh ap Hew ap Huw ‘son of Hugh’. The Welsh patronymic was normally shortened to Pugh and Pew 1 but in this case it seems that the diphthong in /piu/ has been simplified to /pi:/ spelled Pye and Pie becoming pronounced in early Modern English as /pai/. The change might have been made on the analogy of Pye the Anglo-Norman French name in 3 above as a variant of Pew Alternatively since this gentry family seems to be English or Anglo-Norman in origin perhaps their name was the name in 3 above but it was mistakenly re-interpreted as a variant of Welsh Pugh a relatively frequent surname in Herefordshire through Welsh immigration.

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

Similar surnames: Pyle, Bye, Lye, Tye, Rye, Nye, Eye, Dye, Paye, Pee

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Where is the Pye family from?

You can see how Pye families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Pye family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Pye families were found in United Kingdom in 1891. In 1891 there were 1,811 Pye families living in Lancashire. This was about 40% of all the recorded Pye's in United Kingdom. Lancashire had the highest population of Pye families in 1891.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Pye surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Pye 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 Pye. 11% of Pye men worked as a General Labourer and 65% of Pye women worked as an Unpaid Domestic Duties. Some less common occupations for Americans named Pye were Farmer and Cotton Weaver. .

View Census Data for Pye | 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
  • Builders Labourer
  • Dairy Farmer
  • Farmer

Top Female Occupations In 1939

  • Unpaid Domestic Duties
  • Unpaid Domestic
  • Housewife
  • Cotton Weaver
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Pye family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 103,000 census records available for the last name Pye. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Pye census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search Australian census records for Pye

Passenger Lists

There are 9,000 immigration records available for the last name Pye. 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.

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Draft Cards

There are 8,000 military records available for the last name Pye. For the veterans among your Pye ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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What is the average Pye lifespan?

Between 1944 and 2004, in the United States, Pye life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1944, and highest in 1996. The average life expectancy for Pye in 1944 was 40, and 70 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Pye

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