Explore the Family Name Jack

The meaning of Jack

1. English and Scottish: from the Middle English and Older Scots personal name Jak, Jakke, Jagge, Jake, Jeke, Jegge, a Picard-Flemish denasalized form of Old Picard and Middle Dutch Janke, a pet form of Jan (see John). It was introduced by Flemings and Picards into Norman and Anglo-Norman usage, whence it became a common English and Scottish pet form of John. Although the surname is mainly Scottish in distribution, it also occurs in England, though the more common form there is Jackson. 2. English: occasionally perhaps from a Middle English borrowing of the Old French personal name Jacque(s) (James). However, it is uncertain whether English Jack was ever used as an alternative to James. 3. Native American (e.g. Navajo): adoption of the English personal name Jack (see 1 above) as a surname. 4. German (also Jäck): from a short form of the personal name Jacob. 5. Americanized form of French Jacques 1. 6. Americanized form of one or more similar (like-sounding) Jewish surnames. History: This surname (see 5 above) is listed along with its original forms Jacques and Jaques in the (US) National Huguenot Society’s register of qualified Huguenot ancestors.

Dictionary of American Family Names, 2nd edition, © Oxford University Press, 2022.

How common is the last name Jack in the United States?

Based on the Decennial U.S. Census data, the surname "Jack" experienced a slight decrease in popularity ranking between 2000 and 2010, moving from 2376 to 2382. However, the total count of individuals with this surname increased by approximately 9.05 percent during the same time period, growing from 13,990 to 15,256. The proportion of people named Jack per 100,000 decreased minimally by 0.39 percent.

Proportion per 100k5.195.17-0.39%

Race and Ethnicity of people with the last name Jack

When considering the ethnic identity associated with the surname "Jack", the Decennial U.S. Census data reveals some noticeable shifts between 2000 and 2010. The representation of Asian/Pacific Islander and Hispanic individuals with this surname saw significant increases, rising by 90.20 percent and 74.50 percent respectively. The percentage of those identifying as two or more races also grew by 34.43 percent. Meanwhile, the representation of White and American Indian and Alaskan Native individuals with the surname "Jack" decreased by 6.70 percent and 10.22 percent respectively. Black representation slightly increased by 7.68 percent.

American Indian and Alaskan Native5.48%4.92%-10.22%
Two or More Races2.12%2.85%34.43%
Asian/Pacific Islander1.02%1.94%90.2%

Jack ancestry composition

23andMe computes an ancestry breakdown for each customer. People may have ancestry from just one population or they may have ancestry from several populations. The most commonly-observed ancestry found in people with the surname Jack is British & Irish, which comprises 50.7% of all ancestry found in people with the surname. The next two most common ancestries are French & German (19.9%) and Nigerian (4.6%). Additional ancestries include Italian, Eastern European, Ghanaian, Liberian & Sierra Leonean, Scandinavian, and Spanish & Portuguese.

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British & Irish50.7%
French & German19.9%

Possible origins of the surname Jack

Your DNA provides clues about where your recent ancestors may have lived. Having many distant relatives in the same location suggests that you may all share common ancestry there. Locations with many distant relatives can also be places where people have migrated recently, such as large cities. If a large number of individuals who share your surname have distant relatives in a specific area, it could indicate a connection between your surname and that location, stemming from either recent ancestral ties or migration.

Based on 23andMe data, people with last name Jack have recent ancestry locations in United Kingdom and Ireland.

RECENT ANCESTRY LocationPercentage
Greater London, United Kingdom79.90%
Merseyside, United Kingdom79.70%
Glasgow City, United Kingdom79.70%
Greater Manchester, United Kingdom79.40%
Tyne And Wear, United Kingdom79.40%

What Jack haplogroups can tell you

Haplogroups are genetic population groups that share a common ancestor on either your paternal or maternal line. These paternal and maternal haplogroups shed light on your genetic ancestry and help tell the story of your family.

The top paternal haplogroup of people with the surname Jack is R-CTS241, which is predominantly found among people with European ancestry. Haplogroup R-CTS241 is descended from haplogroup R-M343. Other common haplogroups include R-P311 and I-Y4751, which are predominantly found among people with European and European ancestry. Other surnames with similar common haplogroups are: Langdon, Griffith, Davies, Logan, Oliver, Lloyd, Barrow, Hopkins, Sherman, Jones.

The most common maternal haplogroups of people with Jack surname are: T2b, H, H1. These most commonly trace back to individuals of European ancestry.

jackPaternal Haplogroup Origins R-M343

Your maternal lineage may be linked to Marie Antoinette

Because it is so dominant in the general European population, haplogroup H also appears quite frequently in the continent's royal houses. Marie Antoinette, an Austrian Hapsburg who married into the French royal family, inherited the haplogroup from her maternal ancestors. So did Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, whose recorded genealogy traces his female line to Bavaria. Scientists also discovered that famed 16th century astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus traced his maternal lineages to haplogroup H.

Maternal Haplo Image

What do people with the surname Jack have in common?

Spoiler alert: it's complicated. People with the same last name are usually no more genetically similar than a randomly sampled group of people from the same population. That said, people with the same surname are more likely to have similar ancestries than randomly sampled individuals. The reason is the tendency of people with similar cultural or geographical backgrounds to preferentially mate with one another. That's why people who share a surname may be more likely to share traits and tendencies in common than people within the general population. Check out the percentages below to see the prevalences of tastes, habits, and traits of people with your surname compared with prevalences among 23andMe users.



Chocolate Ice Cream

Prefers chocolate flavored ice cream over other flavors.

"Jack" Surname 38.8%

23andMe Users 41.3%




When sounds made by others, like the sound of chewing or yawning, provoke strong emotional reactions in an individual.

"Jack" Surname 26.0%

23andMe Users 27.9%



Sugary Drink

Drinks one or more sugary drinks per day.

"Jack" Surname 16.2%

23andMe Users 21.1%




A severe headache characterized by intense pain, sensitivity to light and sound, and often accompanied by nausea and vomiting.

"Jack" Surname 17.2%

23andMe Users 16.4%

Are health conditions linked to the last name Jack?

The short answer is that, if there is an association between surname and health, it's usually more about your ancestry than your name. Individuals with a given surname are no more genetically similar than the general population but often have similar ancestries. The populations of people associated with those shared ancestries often have sets of genetic variations, also known as alleles, in common. Some of those alleles are associated with a greater likelihood of developing certain diseases.

Disease variant frequency by ancestry

Disease allele frequencies in populations associated with the surname Jack are shown below. Important Note: not everyone with a disease allele will develop these health condition

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Y402H variant

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of irreversible vision loss among older adults. The disease results in damage to the central part of the retina (the macula), impairing vision needed for reading, driving, or even recognizing faces. The 23andMe Health + Ancestry DNA test includes the two most common variants associated with an increased risk of developing the condition: the Y402H variant in the CFH gene and the A69S variant in the ARMS2 gene. Learn more about Age-Related Macular Degeneration

British & Irish 62.1%

23andMe Users 57.2%