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

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Meaning and Origin

What does the name Woodruff mean? Find out below.

Origin and Meaning of Woodruff

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Webster's Unabridged Dictionary
A little European herb (Asperula odorata) having a pleasant taste. It is sometimes used for flavoring wine. See Illust. of Whorl.

Etymology: AS. wudurofe. See Wood (n.), and cf. Ruff a plaited collar

Other Dictionary Sources
  1. Any plant of the genus Asperula
  2. Old World fragrant stoloniferous perennial having small white flowers and narrow leaves used as flavoring and in sachets; widely cultivated as a ground cover; in some classifications placed in genus Asperula

From Old English wudurofe, from wudu (“wood”) + unknown second element.

  1. Galium odoratum, an aromatic herb.

Notable Persons Named Woodruff

Woodruff was born on July 14th, 1870 in Quincy, Illinois. He left this life on November 20th, 1919.


Notable Persons With the Last Name Woodruff

Judy Woodruff is a journalist, writer, news presenter, and television anchor. Her most notable accomplishments were from 1970 to present. Judy was born on November 20th, 1946 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.


Edwina Booth was an actress and actor. Her most notable accomplishments were from 1928 to 1932. Edwina was given the name Josephine Constance Woodruff on September 13th, 1904 in Provo, Utah, U.S. She died on May 18th, 1991.


Bob Woodruff is a television journalist. He has had major accomplishments since 1989. Bob was given the name Robert Warren Woodruff on August 18th, 1961 in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, U.S.


Bille Woodruff is a film director and music video director.


John Woodruff was an athlete. John was born on July 5th, 1915 in Connellsville, Pennsylvania, United States. He died on October 30th, 2007.


Sir Michael Woodruff was a scientist in the field of organ transplantation. Michael was born on April 3rd, 1911 in Mill Hill, London, England. He passed away on March 10th, 2001.


Where is the name Woodruff popular?

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Popularity of Woodruff as a last name

The map shows the relative popularity of the name Woodruff as a last name in each of the states. See other popular names in Ohio, Utah, or Arkansas.

Common last names for Woodruff

  • Smith

Ethnicity Distribution

Ethnicity Woodruff U.S.
  White 82.02% 64.26%
  African American 12.57% 11.96%
  Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander 0.55% 4.85%
  American Indian and Alaska Native 0.59% 0.69%
  Two or More Ethnicities 2.13% 1.76%
  Hispanic or Latino 2.14% 16.26%

Of Last Name Woodruff

People with the last name Woodruff are most frequently White or African American

Entire United States

Fun Facts about the name Woodruff

  • How Popular is the name Woodruff? Woodruff is the 31,132nd most popular name of all time. As a last name Woodruff was the 1,341st most popular name in 2010.
  • How many people with the first name Woodruff have been born in the United States? From 1880 to 2017, the Social Security Administration has recorded 147 babies born with the first name Woodruff in the United States. That's more than enough people named Woodruff to occupy the territory of Pitcairn Islands (United Kingdom) with an estimated population of 66 (as of July 1, 2008).
  • What year were 5 or more babies first named Woodruff? The name was first given to 5 or more babies in the year 1912 when it was given as a first name to 8 new born babies.
  • When was Woodruff first recorded in the United States? The oldest recorded birth by the Social Security Administration for the first name Woodruff is Monday, June 15th, 1874.
  • What year had the most people named Woodruff born? The highest recorded use of the first name Woodruff was in 1917 with a total of 18 babies.
  • Random Woodruff Factoid: According to the 1917 U.S. Social Security Administration data, the first name Woodruff is not a popular baby boy's name in Utah. Imagine that, only 5 babies in Utah have the same name as you in 1917.
  • Weird things about the name Woodruff: Your name in reverse order is Ffurdoow. A random rearrangement of the letters in your name (anagram) will give Fwforudo. How do you pronounce that?
  • How many people have the last name Woodruff? In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed 26,286 people with the last name Woodruff.
  • How likely are you to meet someone with the last name of Woodruff? If you manage to meet 100,000 people in your life, chances are that 9 of them will have Woodruff as their last name.

What Woodruffs Have Visited This Page?

Name poster for Woodruff

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Most Popular Names

All Name Lists

  • Sources:
  • U.S. Census Bureau: Frequently Occurring Surnames from the Census 2000 (public domain).
  • U.S. Social Security Administration: Popular Baby Names, Death Master File (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).
  • Wiktionary: Titles and License.
  • Notable persons via Wikipedia: Titles and License. Click each image for the attribution information.