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

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

The spelling and overall form of Irish names tend to vary widely over time. The original Gaelic form of the name Doolittle is O Dubhlachta. Dubh, the first portion of this name, means black, while the second portion is likely derived from some obsolete Irish forename.


Irish names recorded during the Middle Ages are characterized by many spelling variations. This preponderance of variations for common names can be explained by the fact that the scribes and church officials that kept records during that period individually decided how to capture one's name. These recorders primarily based their decisions on how the name was pronounced or what it meant. Research into the name Doolittle revealed many variations, including Doolittle, Dolittle, Dulittle and others.

First found in County Clare (Irish: An Clįr) located on the west coast of Ireland in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Doolittle research. Another 139 words(10 lines of text) covering the years 117 and 1172 are included under the topic Early Doolittle History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Doolittle Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Under the rule of England, land ownership in Ireland changed dramatically, and many native Irish families found themselves renting out land to farm from absentee owners. This was one of the prime reasons that immigration to North America began in the late 18th century: Irish farmers dreamed of owning their own parcel of land to work for themselves. At this point, the immigrants were at least of modest means for the passage across the Atlantic was often quite dear. In the 1840s the Great Potato Famine created an exodus of people of quite different means. These people were most often destitute: they either sold anything they had to gain a passage or they were sponsored by philanthropic societies. Many of these immigrants were sick from disease and starvation: as a result many did not survive the long transatlantic journey. Although those settlers that did survive were often despised and discriminated against by people already established in these nations, they were critical to rapid development of the powerful industrial nations of the United States and the country that would later become known as Canada. An examination of immigration and passenger lists shows many persons bearing the name of Doolittle or one of its variants:

Doolittle Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Abraham Doolittle, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1640
  • John Doolittle, who landed in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1643
  • John Doolittle of Lynn Massachusetts who settled there in 1643 and became Constable of Boston

Doolittle Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Albert Doolittle arrived in New York in 1820
  • G. Doolittle arrived in San Francisco California in 1850
  • A B Doolittle, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • O J Doolittle, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851


  • Hilda Doolittle (1886-1961), American poet
  • John Taylor Doolittle (b. 1950), American politician, Republican member of the United States House of Representatives since 1991
  • General James Harold "Jimmy" Doolittle (1896-1993), American aviation pioneer. Doolittle served as a general in the United States Army Air Forces during the Second World War
  • Lieutenant-General James Harold Doolittle (1896-1993), American Commanding General of the Eighth Force, Okinawa (1945)
  • Francis William "Bill" Doolittle (1923-2014), American football player and coach, MAC Coach of the Year (1966)


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  1. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
  2. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  3. Read, Charles Anderson. The Cabinet of Irish Literature Selections from the Works of the Chief Poets, Orators and Prose Writers of Ireland 4 Volumes. London: Blackie and Son, 1884. Print.
  4. Vicars, Sir Arthur. Index to the Prerogative Wills of Ireland 1536-1810. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  5. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  6. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1970. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  7. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  8. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
  9. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  10. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  11. ...

The Doolittle Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Doolittle 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 7 October 2014 at 10:00.

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