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Chen Family History

Chen Name Meaning

Chinese:: Mandarin form of the surname 陳 meaning ‘to explain’ and ‘old’ in ancient Chinese: (i) from Chen (陳) the name of a state (located mainly in present-day Henan and Anhui provinces) granted to Hu Gong Man (Duke Hu of Chen reigned 1045–986 BC). His descendants acquired 陳 the name of the state as their surname. (ii) from the surname Hou Mo Chen (侯莫陳) borne by people from the Xianbei ethnic group in northern China. They adopted the surname 陳 after they moved to Luoyang (in present-day Henan province) during the Northern Wei dynasty (386–534 AD). Mandarin form of the surname 諶 meaning ‘believe’ or ‘honestly’ in ancient Chinese: from the second element of the personal name Bi Chen (裨諶) an official in the state of Zheng during the Spring and Autumn period (770–476 BC). alternative Mandarin form of the surname 甄 see Zhen . variant Romanization of the surnames 程 and 成 see Cheng 1 and variant Romanization of the surname 鄭 see Zheng variant Romanization of the surname 曾 see Zeng .7: variant Romanization of the surname 岑 see Cen .8: variant Romanization of the surname 莊 see Zhuang .

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

Similar surnames: Shen, Cheng, Zhen, Che, Chon, Chez, Chan, Achen, Chew, Cain

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Where is the Chen family from?

You can see how Chen families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Chen family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Chen families were found in USA in 1920. In 1840 there were 2 Chen families living in Pennsylvania. This was about 50% of all the recorded Chen's in USA. Pennsylvania had the highest population of Chen families in 1840.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Chen surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Chen ancestors do for a living?

In 1940, Waiter and Housewife were the top reported jobs for men and women in the USA named Chen. 19% of Chen men worked as a Waiter and 19% of Chen women worked as a Housewife. Some less common occupations for Americans named Chen were Laborer and Student. .

View Census Data for Chen | 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 1940

  • Waiter
  • Cook
  • Salesman
  • Laborer

Top Female Occupations In 1940

  • Housewife
  • Cook
  • Teacher
  • Student
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Chen family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 10,000 census records available for the last name Chen. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Chen census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

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Passenger Lists

There are 33,000 immigration records available for the last name Chen. Passenger lists are your ticket to knowing when your ancestors arrived in the USA, and how they made the journey - from the ship name to ports of arrival and departure.

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Draft Cards

There are 13,000 military records available for the last name Chen. For the veterans among your Chen ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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What is the average Chen lifespan?

Between 1945 and 2004, in the United States, Chen life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1945, and highest in 1962. The average life expectancy for Chen in 1945 was 40, and 71 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Chen

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