Paternoster Family History

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Paternoster Name Meaning

English (Essex), French, German, and Italian (Apulia and Basilcata): from Latin pater noster ‘Our Father’, the opening words of the Lord’s Prayer, which is represented by large beads punctuating the rosary. The surname was a metonymic occupational name for a maker of rosaries, often a shortened form of the Middle English, Middle High German occupational term paternosterer. It may also have been originally a nickname for an excessively pious individual or for someone who was under a feudal obligation to say paternosters for his master as part of the service by which he held land. Dutch: probably a habitational name from the name of a house in Delft, ‘Int paternoster’, built in 1600. In this case the derivation is from the word as a term for manacles which hold the hands together so that it appears that the restrained person is praying.

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

Similar surnames: Fenster, Panter, Tester, Painter, Parmenter, Poster, Preister

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Paternoster Family Origin

Where is the Paternoster family from?

Paternoster Family Occupations

What did your Paternoster ancestors do for a living?

In 1880, the most common Paternoster occupation in the USA was Pottery. 100% of Paternoster's were Potterys.

View Census data for Paternoster | Data not to scale

  • Pottery


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

Paternoster Historical Records

What Paternoster family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 5,000 census records available for the last name Paternoster. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Paternoster 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 Paternoster

Passenger List

There are 897 immigration records available for the last name Paternoster. 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.

View all Paternoster immigration records

Draft Card

There are 688 military records available for the last name Paternoster. For the veterans among your Paternoster ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Paternoster military records

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Paternoster Life Expectancy

What is the average Paternoster lifespan?

Between 1954 and 2004, in the United States, Paternoster life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1959, and highest in 1977. The average life expectancy for Paternoster in 1954 was 56, and 77 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Paternoster

An unusually short lifespan might indicate that your Paternoster 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 Paternoster Family Ancestors

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