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

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

The Irish surname Killeen originally appeared in Gaelic as O Cillin.

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The scribes who created documents long before either the Gaelic or English language resembled their standardized versions of today recorded words as they sounded. Consequently, in the Middle Ages the names of many people were recorded under different spellings each time they were written down. Research on the Killeen family name revealed numerous spelling variations, including Killeen, Killen, Killion, Killian, Killin, Gilin, Killan, Killoon, O'Killen, McKillen and many more.

First found in County Mayo (Irish: Maigh Eo) located on the West coast of the Republic of Ireland in the province of Connacht, where they held territories was at Ballykilleen since early times. This lofty family were the ancient Chiefs of Fingal, Earls of Fingal and Lords Killeen. Saint Kilian, (also spelled Killian) from the Irish: Cillian, was an Irish missionary bishop and the apostle of Franconia. He was born in Mullagh, County Cavan, and is the patron saint of the parish of Tuosist, in County Kerry. Saint Kilian's feast day is July 8th and St. Kilian's Abbey, at Würzburg is named after him. Today there are two Killeen Castles in Ireland: one located at Dunsany, in County Meath, that dates back to about 1180, but today's structure is a restoration of the 19th century after a fire in 1981. It will include a luxury golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus. The second Killeen Castle is a 17th century castle at Killeen, in Castlegar, County Galway.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Killeen research. Another 243 words(17 lines of text) covering the years 1180, 1981, 1180 and 1172 are included under the topic Early Killeen History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Suffering from poverty and racial discrimination, thousands of Irish families left the island in the 19th century for North America aboard cramped passenger ships. The early migrants became settlers of small tracts of land, and those that came later were often employed in the new cities or transitional work camps. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Although the immigrants from this period were often maligned when they arrived in the United States, they provided the cheap labor that was necessary for the development of that country as an industrial power. Early immigration and passenger lists have revealed many immigrants bearing the name Killeen:

Killeen Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • James Killeen, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1847
  • Francis and John Killeen arrived in Philadelphia, PA between 1840 and 1860

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  • Frank P Killeen, American railroad executive after who the town of Killeen, Texas was named in 1881
  • Graham Killeen (b. 1980), American filmmaker and critic
  • Gretel Killeen (b. 1963), Australian television personality, host of Big Brother Australia (2001-2007)
  • Richard Killeen (b. 1946), New Zealand painter, sculptor and digital artist
  • Lewis Keith Killeen (b. 1982), English professional footballer from Peterborough
  • Liam Killeen (b. 1982), English gold, silver and bronze medalist mountain biker
  • Neil Killeen (b. 1975), former English cricketer from Shotley Bridge, County Durham
  • Len Killeen (1938-2011), South African rugby league footballer


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  1. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
  2. O'Hart, John. Irish Pedigress 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4).
  3. 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).
  4. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1992. Print.
  5. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  7. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Tepper, Michael Ed & Elizabeth P. Bentley Transcriber. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800-1819. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1986. Print.
  10. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
  11. ...

The Killeen Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Killeen 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 16 November 2013 at 22:24.

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