Towe is a surname. It is a variant of Tough, which originated both as a nickname (from Middle English togh or tow(e), "steadfast") and separately as an Anglicisation of the Scottish surname Tulloch. Other variants include Tow.
According to statistics cited by Patrick Hanks, 225 people on the island of Great Britain and 42 on the island of Ireland bore the surname Towe in 2011. In 1881 there were 90 people with the surname in Great Britain, primarily at Warwickshire, Leicestershire, Staffordshire, and Northumbria. In mid-19th-century Ireland the surname was found primarily at County Antrim. The 2010 United States Census found 2,877 people with the surname Towe, making it the 11,051th-most-common name in the country. This represented an increase in absolute numbers, but a decrease in relative frequency, from 2,799 (10,518th-most-common) in the 2000 Census. In both censuses, slightly fewer than nine-tenths of the bearers of the surname identified as White, and about 7% as Black.
People with this surname include:
- Harry Lancaster Towe (1898–1991), American Republican Party politician
- Matt Towe (born 1988), English ice hockey forward
- Monte Towe (born 1953), American basketball coach
- Peter Towe (1922–2015), Canadian diplomat
- Hanks, Patrick; Coates, Richard; McClure, Peter, eds. (2016). The Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland. Oxford University Press. pp. 2703–2704. ISBN 9780192527479.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
- Hanks, Patrick, ed. (2003). A Dictionary of American Family Names. 3. Oxford University Press. p. 491. ISBN 0195081374.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
- "How common is your last name?". Newsday. Retrieved 5 September 2018.