History of your Surname
Get access to Tell family records.Start a free trial

Tell Family History

Tell Name Meaning

North German: from a pet form of Dietrich. South German: topographic name from Middle High German telle ‘gorge’, ‘depression’. The name of the Swiss hero Wilhelm Tell has not been explained. North German (mainly Westphalia): topographic name from Middle Low German telg(e) ‘branch’, ‘twig’, ‘undergrowth’. Catalan: topographic name from tila ‘linden’ (Latin tilia), denoting someone who lived near a conspicuous linden.

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


Similar surnames: Dell, Pell, Bell, Tull, Well, Toll, Nell, Ell, Fell, Hell

Search for a relative to learn more about your family history.

Hint: Try searching for a relative alive in 1940.

Black & white image of a young woman scientist

Where is the Tell family from?

You can see how Tell families moved over time by selecting different census years. The Tell family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The most Tell families were found in USA in 1880. In 1840 there were 2 Tell families living in Maryland. This was about 17% of all the recorded Tell's in USA. Maryland and 2 other states had the highest population of Tell families in 1840.
Use census records and voter lists to see where families with the Tell surname lived. Within census records, you can often find information like name of household members, ages, birthplaces, residences, and occupations.

What did your Tell ancestors do for a living?

In 1940, Laborer and Maid were the top reported jobs for men and women in the USA named Tell. 28% of Tell men worked as a Laborer and 13% of Tell women worked as a Maid. Some less common occupations for Americans named Tell were Labor and Stenographer. .

View Census Data for Tell | 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

  • Laborer
    28%
  • Farmer
    10%
  • Salesman
    7%
  • Labor
    5%

Top Female Occupations In 1940

  • Maid
    13%
  • Cook
    10%
  • Waitress
    9%
  • Stenographer
    9%
Black & white image of two construction labourers

What Tell family records will you find?

Census Records

There are 13,000 census records available for the last name Tell. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Tell census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

Search US census records for Tell

Passenger Lists

There are 3,000 immigration records available for the last name Tell. 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 Tell immigration records

Draft Cards

There are 9,000 military records available for the last name Tell. For the veterans among your Tell ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

View all Tell military records

You've only scratched the surface of Tell family history

Discover More

What is the average Tell lifespan?

Between 1943 and 2004, in the United States, Tell life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1943, and highest in 2004. The average life expectancy for Tell in 1943 was 40, and 89 in 2004.

View Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Tell

Discover the unique achievements of ancestors in the Tell family tree

Explore Your Tree
Search for another surname
Start a 14-Day Free Trial