Urban last name popularity, history, and meaning

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

Meaning of Urban

Derived from a place name or a topographic name for someone who lived in a city or town.

Urban, 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 Urban surname is from the 2010 census data.

Popularity of Urban in America

Urban is the 1790th most popular name in America based on the data we have collected from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Urban surname appeared 20,058 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 7 people would have the surname Urban.

We can also compare 2010 data for Urban 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 1790 1630 9.36%
Count 20,058 20,117 -0.29%
Proportion per 100k 6.80 7.46 -9.26%

The history of the last name Urban

The surname Urban is of German origin and can be traced back to the 12th century. It is derived from the Latin word "urbanus," meaning "of the city" or "courteous and polished." The name likely originated as a descriptive nickname for someone who lived in a town or city, or who displayed urban manners and sophistication.

The earliest recorded instances of the name appear in medieval German records and manuscripts. In the 13th century, the name was mentioned in the Codex Diplomaticus Saxoniae, a collection of documents related to the history of Saxony. The name was also found in the Bairische Stammtafeln, a genealogical record of Bavarian families from the 14th century.

One of the earliest known bearers of the name was Henricus Urban, a German cleric who lived in the 13th century and served as the Bishop of Bamberg from 1242 to 1245. Another notable figure was Urban Wyss (c. 1420-1499), a Swiss scholar and humanist who taught at the University of Basel.

In the 16th century, the name was associated with several notable individuals, including Urban Rhegius (1489-1541), a German Lutheran reformer and theologian, and Urban of Gellhausen (c. 1540-1616), a German Catholic priest and composer.

During the 17th century, the name gained prominence in various parts of Europe. One notable bearer was Urban HiƤrne (1641-1722), a Swedish naturalist and physician who made significant contributions to the study of anatomy and zoology. Another was Urban Grandier (1590-1634), a French Catholic priest who was famously accused and executed for witchcraft.

In the 18th century, the name was associated with several notable figures in the arts and sciences. Urban Jarnac (1742-1813) was a French architect who designed several notable buildings in Paris, while Urban Bruun Aaskow (1742-1806) was a Danish naval officer and cartographer who produced many important maritime charts.

As the name spread across Europe and beyond, it continued to be borne by individuals of note. In the 19th century, Urban Le Verrier (1811-1877) was a French mathematician and astronomer who is credited with predicting the existence of the planet Neptune based on mathematical calculations. Urban Oettinger (1823-1866) was a German painter and illustrator known for his landscapes and genre scenes.

These are just a few examples of the many notable individuals who have borne the surname Urban throughout history. The name has endured for centuries and continues to be carried by people of diverse backgrounds and accomplishments.

Race and ethnic origin of people with the last name Urban

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

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 Urban was:

Race/Ethnicity Percentage Total Occurrences
Non-Hispanic White Only 91.96% 18,445
Non-Hispanic Black Only 0.37% 74
Non-Hispanic Asian and Pacific Islander Only 0.86% 172
Non-Hispanic American Indian and Alaskan Native 0.31% 62
Non-Hispanic of Two or More Races 0.89% 179
Hispanic Origin 5.61% 1,125

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 Urban has changed in the 10 years between the two census surveys.

2010 2000 Change (%)
White 91.96% 93.71% -1.89%
Black 0.37% 0.27% 31.25%
Asian and Pacific Islander 0.86% 0.54% 45.71%
American Indian and Alaskan Native 0.31% 0.22% 33.96%
Two or More Races 0.89% 0.82% 8.19%
Hispanic 5.61% 4.43% 23.51%

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 Urban was researched and written by our team of onomatology and genealogy experts.

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

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"Urban last name popularity, history, and meaning". NameCensus.com. Accessed on July 17, 2024. http://namecensus.com/last-names/urban-surname-popularity/.

"Urban last name popularity, history, and meaning". NameCensus.com, http://namecensus.com/last-names/urban-surname-popularity/. Accessed 17 July, 2024

Urban last name popularity, history, and meaning. NameCensus.com. Retrieved from http://namecensus.com/last-names/urban-surname-popularity/.

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