Varney last name popularity, history, and meaning

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

Meaning of Varney

Derived from a Norman French place name meaning "from Varney," a town in Normandy, France.

Varney, 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 Varney surname is from the 2010 census data.

Popularity of Varney in America

Varney is the 4169th most popular name in America based on the data we have collected from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Varney surname appeared 8,502 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 3 people would have the surname Varney.

We can also compare 2010 data for Varney 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 4169 3802 9.21%
Count 8,502 8,563 -0.71%
Proportion per 100k 2.88 3.17 -9.59%

The history of the last name Varney

The surname Varney is believed to have originated in France and England during the medieval period. It is thought to have derived from the Old French word "varniere," which referred to a grove of alders or a place where alders grew. This suggests that the name may have initially been a locational surname, given to someone who lived near a patch of alder trees.

One of the earliest recorded instances of the Varney surname can be found in the Domesday Book of 1086, which was a comprehensive survey of land ownership in England commissioned by William the Conqueror. The name is listed as "Vernei," which is likely an early spelling variation.

In the 13th century, there are records of a family named Varney residing in the county of Somerset, England. A notable member of this family was Sir Ralph Varney, who served as a knight and military commander during the reign of King Edward III (1312-1377).

Another prominent figure with the Varney surname was John Varney (c. 1470-1530), an English merchant and alderman from the city of Bristol. He was known for his involvement in the wool trade and served as the Mayor of Bristol in 1528.

During the 16th century, the Varney name appears in various historical documents related to the English aristocracy. One example is Dorothy Varney (c. 1525-1599), who was a gentlewoman and attendant to Queen Elizabeth I.

In the realm of literature, the surname Varney features in the Gothic novel "Varney the Vampire" by James Malcolm Rymer, published in the mid-19th century. The titular character, Sir Francis Varney, is depicted as a wealthy and aristocratic vampire.

Other notable individuals with the Varney surname include John Varney (1617-1668), an English minister and author of religious works, and William Varney (1809-1888), an American inventor and businessman who patented several improvements to firearms and agricultural equipment.

Race and ethnic origin of people with the last name Varney

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

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 Varney was:

Race/Ethnicity Percentage Total Occurrences
Non-Hispanic White Only 94.82% 8,062
Non-Hispanic Black Only 0.92% 78
Non-Hispanic Asian and Pacific Islander Only 0.82% 70
Non-Hispanic American Indian and Alaskan Native 0.24% 20
Non-Hispanic of Two or More Races 1.47% 125
Hispanic Origin 1.73% 147

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

2010 2000 Change (%)
White 94.82% 96.58% -1.84%
Black 0.92% 0.70% 27.16%
Asian and Pacific Islander 0.82% 0.48% 52.31%
American Indian and Alaskan Native 0.24% 0.30% -22.22%
Two or More Races 1.47% 1.11% 27.91%
Hispanic 1.73% 0.83% 70.31%

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

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

Reference this page

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"Varney last name popularity, history, and meaning". Accessed on July 13, 2024.

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