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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Origins Available: Irish-Alt, Irish

Where did the Irish Conner family come from? What is the Irish Conner family crest and coat of arms? When did the Conner family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Conner family history?

Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Conner originally appeared in Gaelic as O Conchobhair, derived from the personal name Conchobhar.


Names from the Middle Ages demonstrate many spelling variations. This is because the recording scribe or church official often decided as to how a person's name was spelt and in what language. Research into the name Conner revealed many variations, including Connor, Conner, Conor, Connors, O'Connor, Connores, Conner, Connar, Connars, O'Connar, O'Conner, Connair, Connairs, Connaire, Connaires, Cawner, Cawners, Caunnor, Cauner, Cauners and many more.

First found in Connacht. There were six different septs of this famous name scattered throughout Ireland, of which four continue to boast many members. However, the most important O'Connors were those of Connacht, divided into three main branches: O'Conor Don; O'Conor Roe; and O'Conor Sligo. The Connacht O'Connors were direct descendants of Conchobhar, King of Connacht, who died in 971 AD. Furthermore, this family produced the last two High Kings of Ireland: Turlough O'Connor (1088-1156) and Roderick O'Connor (1116-1196). It was the invasion of Leinster by Roderick O'Conner on behalf of the Prince of West Brefney that caused the King of Leinster, Dermod MacMorough, to flee to England for aid. This resulted in the Strongbow Invasion of 1168, the beginning of English domination over Ireland. Despite remaining stubbornly Catholic, the O'Connor family continued to maintain their elite position among the Irish nobility throughout the entire period of British dominance.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Conner research. Another 363 words(26 lines of text) covering the years 1002, 1641, 1652, 1710, 1791, 1838, 1906, 1763 and 1852 are included under the topic Early Conner History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 111 words(8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Conner Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape the religious and political discrimination they experienced primarily at the hands of the English, thousands of Irish left their homeland in the 19th century. These migrants typically settled in communities throughout the East Coast of North America, but also joined the wagon trains moving out to the Midwest. Ironically, when the American War of Independence began, many Irish settlers took the side of England, and at the war's conclusion moved north to Canada. These United Empire Loyalists, were granted land along the St. Lawrence River and the Niagara Peninsula. Other Irish immigrants settled in Newfoundland, the Ottawa Valley, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The greatest influx of Irish immigrants, however, came to North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Thousands left Ireland at this time for North America and Australia. Many of those numbers, however, did not live through the long sea passage. These Irish settlers to North America were immediately put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. Irish settlers made an inestimable contribution to the building of the New World. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the Irish name Conner or a variant listed above, including:

Conner Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • William Conner who settled in Plymouth, arriving on the "Fortune" in 1621, just a year after the "Mayflower"
  • William Conner, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • Philip Conner, who arrived in Maryland in 1640
  • Phillip Conner, who landed in Maryland in 1640
  • Mary Conner, who landed in Maryland in 1648

Conner Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Turler Conner, who arrived in Virginia in 1705
  • Lewis Conner, who arrived in Virginia in 1711
  • Edwd Conner, who landed in Virginia in 1713
  • Dennis Conner, who landed in Virginia in 1715
  • Keador Conner, who arrived in Virginia in 1716

Conner Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Michael Conner, who arrived in America in 1811
  • Barnard Conner, aged 33, arrived in New York in 1812
  • John W Conner, who landed in Texas in 1835
  • Daniel Conner, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1838
  • Peter Conner, who landed in Mississippi in 1838

Conner Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century

  • Fred Conner, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1906


  • Dennis Conner (b. 1942), American yachtsman and four-time America's Cup winner
  • Fox Conner (1874-1951), United States Army Major General in World War I
  • Tara Elizabeth Conner (b. 1985), American beauty queen and model, Miss USA 2006
  • Bruce Conner (1933-2008), American artist renowned for his work in film, drawing, sculpture, painting, collage, and photography
  • Chris Ryan Conner (b. 1983), American professional NHL ice hockey player
  • Commodore David Conner (1792-1856), American officer of the United States Navy, whose service included the War of 1812 and the Mexican-American War, eponym of the destroyers USS Conner (DD-72) and the USS Conner (DD-582)
  • Finis Conner, American founder of Conner Peripherals
  • William Conner (1777-1855), American trader, interpreter, scout, and interpreter for the American forces in the War of 1812, founder of Hamilton County, Indiana
  • Pierre Euclide Conner (b. 1932), American mathematician, fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2012
  • Alexander Hamilton Conner (1831-1891), American politician and legislator, Member of the Indiana House of Representatives in 1856, son of William Conner



  • A Family of the Bagaduc; The Ancestry and Genealogy of William Connor, Jr. (1807-1884) by Albert E. Myers.

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: O Dhia gach an cabhair
Motto Translation: From God Every Help


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  1. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  2. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  3. Woulfe, Rev. Patrick. Irish Names and Surnames Collected and Edited with Explanatory and Historical Notes. Kansas City: Genealogical Foundation, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-940134-403).
  4. Woodham-Smith, Cecil. The Great Hunger Ireland 1845-1849. New York: Old Town Books, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-385-3).
  5. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  7. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  8. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  11. ...

The Conner Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Conner Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 15 September 2014 at 13:27.

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