Kaminski: Last Name Meaning and Origin

The Kaminski last name derives from a Polish word for "rocky place."
Getty / Leonardo Muniz

From the root kamien, meaning "stone or rock," the popular Polish last name Kaminski means "one who came from a rocky place," or was sometimes an occupational surname for a "person who works with rock," such as a stone carver or someone who worked in a quarry.

Alternatively, the Kaminski surname may be locational in origin, indicating that the person originally came from any one of dozens of Polish villages named Kamien (meaning "rocky place"), or from one of the various places named Kamin or Kaminka in Ukraine, or Kamionka in Poland. Kaminsky is a common anglicization of the Kamiński surname.

  • Surname Origin: Polish

Where People With the Surname Kaminski Live

According to WorldNames publicprofiler, individuals with the Kaminski last name are most commonly found in Poland, with the greatest concentration in the northeastern regions, including Podlaskie, Kujawsko-Pomorskie, and Warmińsko-Mazurskie. The Polish-specific surname distribution map on moikrewni.pl calculates the population distribution of surnames down to the district level, finding Kaminski to be most common in Bydgoszcz, followed by Starogard Gdanski, Chojnice, Bytow, New Tomyśl, Tarnowskie Mountains, Torun, Srem, Tuchola and Inowrocław.

Famous People

  • Marek Kamiński: Polish polar explorer, author, entrepreneur
  • Janusz Kaminski: Academy Award-winning cinematographer and director
  • Avrom-Yitskhok Kaminski: Yiddish actor and theater director
  • Heinrich Kaminski: German composer
  • Heinz Kaminski: German space researcher and chemical engineer
  • Adolfo Kaminsky: French WWI resistance fighter and document forger
  • Bohdan Kaminský: Czech poet and translator

Genealogy Resources

  • A Kaminsky Family Genealogy: Genealogy research into an extended Kaminsky family, with information on over 8,000 different individuals.
  • Kaminski Family Genealogy Forum: Search this popular genealogy forum for the Kaminski surname to find others who might be researching your ancestors, or post your own Kaminski surname query.
  • FamilySearch: Access over 370,000 million free historical records and lineage-linked family trees posted for the Kaminski surname and its variations on this free genealogy website hosted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  • Kaminksi Surname & Family Mailing Lists: RootsWeb hosts several free mailing lists for researchers of the Kaminski surname and variations such as Kaminsky, Kamenski, and Kamensky.
  • DistantCousin.com: Explore free databases and genealogy links for the last name Kaminski.


  • Cottle, Basil. "Penguin Dictionary of Surnames." Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1967.
  • Menk, Lars. "A Dictionary of German Jewish Surnames." Bergenfield, NJ: Avotaynu, 2005.
  • Beider, Alexander. "A Dictionary of Jewish Surnames from Galicia." Bergenfield, NJ: Avotaynu, 2004.
  • Hanks, Patrick and Flavia Hodges. "A Dictionary of Surnames." New York: Oxford University Press, 1989.
  • Hanks, Patrick. "Dictionary of American Family Names." New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.
  • Hoffman, William F. "Polish Surnames: Origins and Meanings." Chicago: Polish Genealogical Society, 1993.
  • Rymut, Kazimierz. "Nazwiska Polakow." Wroclaw: Zaklad Narodowy im. Ossolinskich - Wydawnictwo, 1991.
  • Smith, Elsdon C. "American Surnames." Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1997.
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Your Citation
Powell, Kimberly. "Kaminski: Last Name Meaning and Origin." ThoughtCo, Jul. 31, 2021, thoughtco.com/kaminski-last-name-meaning-and-origin-3859672. Powell, Kimberly. (2021, July 31). Kaminski: Last Name Meaning and Origin. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/kaminski-last-name-meaning-and-origin-3859672 Powell, Kimberly. "Kaminski: Last Name Meaning and Origin." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/kaminski-last-name-meaning-and-origin-3859672 (accessed March 31, 2023).