Gu Name Meaning

Chinese : from the place name Gu. Records of the this surname go back to the Xia dynasty (2205–1766 bc), when there existed a state called Gu. Much later, during the Spring and Autumn period (722–481 bc), there existed another state of Gu. Eventually, some descendants of the ruling class of both these areas adopted the place name as their surname. Chinese : from a word meaning ‘valley’. During the Zhou dynasty (1122–221 bc) there existed in the state of Qin a certain Viscount Fei Zi, a descendant of the legendary emperor Zhuan Xu of the 26th century bc. Viscount Fei Zi was granted the area Qin Valley, and his descendants later adopted the word gu ‘valley’, as their surname. Chinese : from the name of the grandfather of the virtuous duke Wen Wang (1231–1135 bc), known as Gu Gong Tan Fu. The character for Gu, which also means ‘ancient’, was adopted by some of his descendants as a surname.

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

Similar surnames: Lu, Xu, Wu, Yu, Guo, Fu, Su, Ge, Hu, Qu

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Gu Family Origin

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Gu Family Occupations

What did your Gu ancestors do for a living?

In 1880, Farmer and Huckster were the top 2 reported jobs worked by Gu. The most common Gu occupation in the USA was Farmer. 67% of Gu's were Farmers. A less common occupation for the Gu family was Opium Seller.

View Census data for Gu | Data not to scale

  • Farmer

  • Huckster

  • Opium Seller


Census records can tell you a lot of little known facts about your Gu ancestors, such as occupation. Occupation can tell you about your ancestor's social and economic status.

Gu Historical Records

What Gu family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 2,000 census records available for the last name Gu. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Gu census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search 1940's US census records for Gu

Passenger List

There are 1,000 immigration records available for the last name Gu. 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 Card

There are 511 military records available for the last name Gu. For the veterans among your Gu ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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Gu Life Expectancy

What is the average Gu lifespan?

Between 1988 and 2004, in the United States, Gu life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1998, and highest in 2003. The average life expectancy for Gu in 1988 was 68, and 69 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Gu

An unusually short lifespan might indicate that your Gu ancestors lived in harsh conditions. A short lifespan might also indicate health problems that were once prevalent in your family. The SSDI is a searchable database of more than 70 million names. You can find birthdates, death dates, addresses and more.

Famous Gu Family Ancestors

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