Rey Name Meaning

Spanish and southern French (Occitan): from Spanish and Old French rey ‘king’ (from Latin rex, genitive regis), which could have been applied any of in numerous ways: it may have denoted someone in the service of a king; it may have been from the title of someone in a brotherhood; or a nickname for someone who behaved in a regal fashion or who had earned the title in some contest of skill or by presiding over festivities. English: variant spelling of Ray 1, cognate with 1. German: from a short form of a Germanic personal name formed with ragin ‘counsel’. German: nickname for a leader of dancing or singing, from Middle Low German rei(e) ‘(line) dance’, ‘(satirical) song’.

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

Similar surnames: Ray, Roy, Re, Ney, Fey, Ley, Hey, Reh, Bey, Krey

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Rey Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Rey name?

These results combine data from everyone in the AncestryDNA® database with the last name Rey. The Ancestry® ethnicity regions shown are top five most common on average for these people.

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  • England & Wales


  • Spain


  • Ireland & Scotland


  • Native American—North, Central, South


  • Portugal


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Rey Family Origin

Where is the Rey family from?

Rey Family Occupations

What did your Rey ancestors do for a living?

In 1880, a less common occupation for the Rey family was Farming. The most common Rey occupation in the USA was Farmer. 28% of Rey's were Farmers. Farmer, Laborer and Keeping House were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Rey.

View Census data for Rey | Data not to scale

  • Farmer

  • Laborer

  • Keeping House

  • Farming


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

Rey Historical Records

What Rey family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 33,000 census records available for the last name Rey. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Rey 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 Rey

Passenger List

There are 21,000 immigration records available for the last name Rey. 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 7,000 military records available for the last name Rey. For the veterans among your Rey ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

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You've only scratched the surface of Rey family history.

Rey Life Expectancy

What is the average Rey lifespan?

Between 1943 and 2004, in the United States, Rey life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1943, and highest in 1963. The average life expectancy for Rey in 1943 was 26, and 71 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Rey

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

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