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Willis Family History

Willis Name Meaning

English:: variant of Will with genitival -s. This surname represents a retention of the second syllable introduced by the addition of the Middle English genitival suffix -es which would have been pronounced in the Middle English period. Compare Wills . In some cases the name is a variant of Willey with genitival or post-medieval excrescent -s. variant of Willows .

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

Similar surnames: Willits, Wills, Tillis, Lillis, Millis, Willms, Willison, Wilkes

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Where is the Willis family from?

You can see how Willis families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Willis family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Willis families were found in USA in 1880. In 1840 there were 211 Willis families living in New York. This was about 14% of all the recorded Willis's in USA. New York had the highest population of Willis families in 1840.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Willis surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Willis ancestors do for a living?

In 1940, Laborer and Maid were the top reported jobs for men and women in the USA named Willis. 19% of Willis men worked as a Laborer and 8% of Willis women worked as a Maid. Some less common occupations for Americans named Willis were Truck Driver and Housekeeper. .

View Census Data for Willis | 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

  • Laborer
  • Farmer
  • Salesman
  • Truck Driver

Top Female Occupations In 1940

  • Maid
  • Cook
  • Housewife
  • Housekeeper
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Willis family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 801,000 census records available for the last name Willis. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Willis 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 60,000 immigration records available for the last name Willis. 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 124,000 military records available for the last name Willis. For the veterans among your Willis ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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What is the average Willis lifespan?

Between 1940 and 2004, in the United States, Willis life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1942, and highest in 1999. The average life expectancy for Willis in 1940 was 39, and 73 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Willis

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