First Name
in the U.S.
since 1880
Last Name
in the U.S.
in 2010
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How to Pronounce Rafter

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Meaning and Origin

What does the name Rafter mean? Find out below.

Origin and Meaning of Rafter

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Webster's Unabridged Dictionary
noun Raft"er
A raftsman.
noun Raft"er
Originally, any rough and somewhat heavy piece of timber. Now, commonly, one of the timbers of a roof which are put on sloping, according to the inclination of the roof. See Illust. of Queen-post.

Etymology: AS. ræfter; akin to E. raft, n. See Raft

verb Raft"er
  1. To make into rafters, as timber.
  2. To furnish with rafters, as a house.
  3. [Agric] To plow so as to turn the grass side of each furrow upon an unplowed ridge; to ridge.(Eng)
Other Dictionary Sources
  1. One of several parallel sloping beams that support a roof
  2. Someone who travels by raft
  3. Provide (a ceiling) with rafters

Notable Persons With the Last Name Rafter

Pat Rafter is a tennis player. Pat was born on December 28th, 1972 in Mount Isa, Queensland, Australia.


Mike was born on March 31st, 1952 in Bristol.




Charles Haughton Rafter was a police officer. Charles was born in 1860 in Belfast, Ireland. Charles is also known as Sir Charles Haughton Rafter. He left this life on August 23rd, 1935.


Where is the name Rafter popular?

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Popularity of Rafter as a last name

The map shows the absolute popularity of the name Rafter as a last name in each of the states. See other popular names in Pennsylvania, New York, or Illinois.

Ethnicity Distribution

Ethnicity Rafter U.S.
  White 91.75% 64.26%
  African American 3.83% 11.96%
  Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander 0.00% 4.85%
  American Indian and Alaska Native 0.00% 0.69%
  Two or More Ethnicities 1.37% 1.76%
  Hispanic or Latino 1.91% 16.26%

Of Last Name Rafter

People with the last name Rafter are most frequently White

Entire United States

Fun Facts about the name Rafter

  • How Popular is the name Rafter? As a last name Rafter was the 16,984th most popular name in 2010.
  • When was the first name Rafter first recorded in the United States? The oldest recorded birth by the Social Security Administration for the name Rafter is Monday, August 23rd, 1920.
  • How unique is the name Rafter? From 1880 to 2017 less than 5 people per year have been born with the first name Rafter. Hoorah! You are a unique individual.
  • Weird things about the name Rafter: Your name in reverse order is Retfar. A random rearrangement of the letters in your name (anagram) will give Frreta. How do you pronounce that?
  • How many people have the last name Rafter? In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed 1,673 people with the last name Rafter.
  • How likely are you to meet someone with the last name of Rafter? Chances are, most people haven't met someone with Rafter as their last name since less than 1 person in 175k people have that last name. If you know one, consider yourself lucky!

What Rafters Have Visited This Page?

Name poster for Rafter

Name poster for Rafter(click to save the high quality version)

Most Popular Names

All Name Lists

  • Sources:
  • U.S. Census Bureau: Frequently Occurring Surnames from the Census 2000 (public domain).
  • 1913 Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary via the Collaborative International Dictionary of English (License)
  • Other Dictionary Sources: WordNet 3.1 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University (License).
  • Notable persons via Wikipedia: Titles and License. Click each image for the attribution information.