Ryan Family History

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Ryan Name Meaning

Irish: simplified form of Mulryan. Irish: reduced form of O’Ryan, an Anglicized form of Gaelic Ó Riagháin (modern Irish Ó Riain) ‘descendant of Rian’; Ó Maoilriain ‘descendant of Maoilriaghain’, or Ó Ruaidhín ‘descendant of the little red one’. Ryan is one of the commonest surnames in Ireland; there has been considerable confusion with Regan. KaM Americanized spelling of German Rein. EG

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

Similar surnames: Cryan, Yan, Rhyan, Bryan, Gean, Ryon, Ryans, Ronan, Bean, Ryant

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Ryan Ethnicity Estimate

What are the common regions with the Ryan name?

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

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  • Ireland & Scotland


  • England & Wales


  • Germanic Europe


  • Eastern Europe & Russia


  • France


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Ryan Family Origin

Where is the Ryan family from?

Ryan Family Occupations

What did your Ryan ancestors do for a living?

In 1880, Farmer, Laborer and Keeping House were the top 3 reported jobs worked by Ryan. A less common occupation for the Ryan family was Carpenter. The most common Ryan occupation in the USA was Farmer. 19% of Ryan's were Farmers.

View Census data for Ryan | Data not to scale

  • Farmer

  • Laborer

  • Keeping House

  • Carpenter


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

Ryan Historical Records

What Ryan family records will you find?

Census Record

There are 1 million census records available for the last name Ryan. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Ryan 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 Ryan

Passenger List

There are 250,000 immigration records available for the last name Ryan. 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 212,000 military records available for the last name Ryan. For the veterans among your Ryan 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 Ryan family history.

Ryan Life Expectancy

What is the average Ryan lifespan?

Between 1940 and 2004, in the United States, Ryan life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1945, and highest in 2004. The average life expectancy for Ryan in 1940 was 62, and 75 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Ryan

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

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