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Brett Family History

Brett Name Meaning

English: ethnic name for a Breton from Old French bret nominative of breton ‘Breton’. The Bretons were Celtic-speakers driven from southwestern England to northwestern France in the 6th century AD by Anglo-Saxon invaders; some of them reinvaded England in the 11th century as part of the army of William the Conqueror. In France and among Normans Bretons had a reputation for stupidity and in some cases this name and its variants and cognate may have originated as derogatory nicknames. The English surname is most common in East Anglia where many Bretons settled after the Conquest. In Scotland it may also have denoted a member of one of the Celtic-speaking peoples of Strathclyde who were known as Bryttas or Brettas well into the 13th century. German: metonymic occupational name from Middle Low German bret ‘board’ for a sawyer or carpenter or from a shortened compound like Brettschneider Bretthauer . French: very rare variant and probably an Americanized form of Bret a cognate of 1 above.

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

Similar surnames: Britt, Bratt, Brent, Frett, Best, Pratt, Brott, Great, Burgett

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Where is the Brett family from?

You can see how Brett families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Brett family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Brett families were found in United Kingdom in 1891. In 1840 there were 24 Brett families living in Massachusetts. This was about 28% of all the recorded Brett's in USA. Massachusetts had the highest population of Brett families in 1840.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Brett surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Brett ancestors do for a living?

In 1940, Farmer and Teacher were the top reported jobs for men and women in the USA named Brett. 14% of Brett men worked as a Farmer and 9% of Brett women worked as a Teacher. Some less common occupations for Americans named Brett were Truck Driver and Secretary. .

View Census Data for Brett | 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

  • Farmer
  • Laborer
  • Salesman
  • Truck Driver

Top Female Occupations In 1940

  • Teacher
  • Stenographer
  • Housewife
  • Secretary
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What Brett family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 180,000 census records available for the last name Brett. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Brett 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 19,000 immigration records available for the last name Brett. 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 16,000 military records available for the last name Brett. For the veterans among your Brett ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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What is the average Brett lifespan?

Between 1946 and 2004, in the United States, Brett life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1946, and highest in 2003. The average life expectancy for Brett in 1946 was 41, and 71 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Brett

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