Maier last name popularity, history, and meaning

Find out how popular the last name Maier is in the United States and learn more about the meaning, history, and race and ethnic origin of people in America who are named Maier.

Meaning of Maier

A German occupational surname referring to a steward, bailiff, or administrator of a farm or estate.

Maier, like all of the last names we have data for, is identified by the U.S. Census Bureau as a surname which has more than 100 occurrences in the United States in the Decennial Census survey. The most recent statistics we have for the Maier surname is from the 2010 census data.

Popularity of Maier in America

Maier is the 2557th most popular name in America based on the data we have collected from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Maier surname appeared 14,135 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 5 people would have the surname Maier.

We can also compare 2010 data for Maier to data from the previous census in 2000. The table below contains all of the statistics for both years in a side-by-side comparison.

2010 2000 Change (%)
Rank 2557 2385 6.96%
Count 14,135 13,929 1.47%
Proportion per 100k 4.79 5.16 -7.44%

The history of the last name Maier

The surname Maier originated in Germany during the Middle Ages. It is derived from the German word "Meier," which referred to a bailiff or farm manager who oversaw agricultural workers on a feudal estate. The name is closely related to the English word "mayor," which stems from the same Latin root, "maior," meaning "larger" or "greater."

The earliest known records of the Maier surname date back to the 13th century in various regions of Germany, including Bavaria, Saxony, and the Rhineland. It was often spelled as "Meier," "Meyer," or "Mayer" in historical documents from this era.

One notable early reference to the name can be found in the "Codex Diplomaticus Brandenburgensis," a collection of historical records from the Margraviate of Brandenburg, which mentions a "Henricus Meier" in the year 1284.

During the Middle Ages, the Maier surname was often associated with individuals who held positions of authority or management in rural areas, reflecting the occupation of a bailiff or farm overseer. As the name became more widespread, it was adopted by families across various social classes.

Over the centuries, several notable individuals have borne the Maier surname. One example is Johann Friedrich Maier (1708-1766), a German composer and music theorist who made significant contributions to the development of early Classical music.

Another prominent figure was Konrad Maier (1828-1888), a German entrepreneur and industrialist who founded the Maier-Werke, a successful machinery manufacturing company in W├╝rttemberg.

In the realm of science, Ernst Maier (1838-1915) was a renowned German physicist and mathematician who made important contributions to the study of electromagnetism and thermodynamics.

The name Maier also has a strong literary presence, with figures such as Hans Maier (1867-1933), a German poet and novelist known for his works depicting rural life in Bavaria.

Lastly, a notable contemporary bearer of the Maier surname is Norbert Maier (born 1952), a German politician and former government minister who served as the Minister of Justice for the state of Baden-W├╝rttemberg.

These examples illustrate the widespread presence of the Maier surname throughout German history, spanning various professions and regions, and highlighting its enduring legacy as a name deeply rooted in the country's cultural and occupational traditions.

Race and ethnic origin of people with the last name Maier

We also have some data on the ancestry of people with the surname Maier.

The below race categories are the modified race categories used in the Census Bureau's population estimates program. All people were categorized into six mutually exclusive racial and Hispanic origin groups:

  1. White only
  2. Black only
  3. American Indian and Alaskan Native only
  4. Asian and Pacific Islander only
  5. Hispanic
  6. Two or More Races

For the most recent 2010 census data, the race/ethnic origin breakdown for Maier was:

Race/Ethnicity Percentage Total Occurrences
Non-Hispanic White Only 94.67% 13,382
Non-Hispanic Black Only 0.45% 64
Non-Hispanic Asian and Pacific Islander Only 0.67% 95
Non-Hispanic American Indian and Alaskan Native 0.37% 52
Non-Hispanic of Two or More Races 1.32% 187
Hispanic Origin 2.53% 358

Note: Any fields showing (S) means the data was suppressed for privacy so that the data does not in any way identify any specific individuals.

Since we have data from the previous census in 2000, we can also compare the values to see how the popularity of Maier has changed in the 10 years between the two census surveys.

2010 2000 Change (%)
White 94.67% 96.26% -1.67%
Black 0.45% 0.24% 60.87%
Asian and Pacific Islander 0.67% 0.46% 37.17%
American Indian and Alaskan Native 0.37% 0.33% 11.43%
Two or More Races 1.32% 1.05% 22.78%
Hispanic 2.53% 1.66% 41.53%

Data source

The last name data and ethnic breakdown of last names is sourced directly from the Decennial Census survey, conducted every 10 years by the United States Census Bureau.

The history and meaning of the name Maier was researched and written by our team of onomatology and genealogy experts.

If you have a correction or suggestion to improve the history of Maier, please contact us.

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"Maier last name popularity, history, and meaning". Accessed on July 12, 2024.

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