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Origins of the Adams surname

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What does the name Adams mean?

The Adams surname is English and Scottish in origin and is found across Britain, where it appears in records as early as the 1300s (and has later spread across the English-speaking world). Adams is a patronymic surname, referring to those who are the son or descendant of Adam (a popular medieval name, particularly in the 1200s).

Alternative variations of the name Adams

Adams, Adam, MacAdam, Addams, Addam

I’ve managed to trace back to the mid-1500s! I can’t believe it! Utterly engrossing and I have uncovered some quite moving and heartbreaking stories attached to various ancestors. You don’t need any qualifications to start - just time patience, and some information.

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Where do most Adamses live?

In 1921, most Adamses lived in London.

Census records trace your ancestors through each generation, so you can follow where your relatives lived through each decade.

Interesting facts about Adamses

How common is your surname?

64th most common surname in the UK

We have 446,000 records for the Adams surname. The oldest one dates back to 1220.

Who were Adamses most likely to marry?




Our Marriage record sets tell us which families married Adamses.

What are the most common Adams first names?

  • John
  • William
  • Mary
  • Elizabeth

Our birth record sets tell us the names of Adams family members

Common jobs for Adamses

Men and women often performed different types of jobs, so these are displayed by gender to maintain their historical accuracy.

Common Female occupations for Adamses in 1921




Domestic Servant


General Servant Domestic


General Servant


Common Male occupations for Adamses in 1921
Agricultural Labourer


General Labourer




Coal Miner


Farm Labourer


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