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

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

The McFadden family comes from the ancient Scottish Dalriadan clans of the mountainous west coast of Scotland. The name McFadden is derived from the personal name Paidean. The Gaelic forms of the surname are Mac Phadein or Mac Phaidin, both of which mean son of Paidean.


Translation in medieval times was an undeveloped science and was often carried out without due care. For this reason, many early Scottish names appeared radically altered when written in English. The spelling variations of McFadden include McFadyen, Fadden, Fadyen, Faden, McFadin, Fadin, McFadwyn, Fadwyn, McFadyean, McFadyon, McFayden, Feyden and many more.

First found in Kintyre, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McFadden research. Another 244 words(17 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McFadden History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


Some of the McFadden family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 173 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


The hardy Scots who made the crossing settled all along the east coast of North America and in the great west that was just then opening up. At the time of the American War of Independence, many United Empire Loyalists moved north from the American colonies to Canada. Scottish national heritage became better known in North America in the 20th century through highland games and other patriotic events. An examination of immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name McFadden arrived in North America very early:

McFadden Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Andrew McFadden, who arrived in New England in 1718
  • James McFadden, who landed in New England in 1718-1720

McFadden Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • John McFadden, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1809
  • Joseph McFadden, aged 6, arrived in America in 1822
  • Samuel McFadden, who landed in New York in 1827
  • Sharp McFadden, who arrived in New York in 1838
  • Robert McFadden, who landed in Mississippi in 1838


  • Daniel L McFadden (b. 1937), American economist who won the 2000 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences
  • Gates McFadden (b. 1949), American actress
  • Louis Thomas McFadden (1876-1936), member of the U.S. House of Representatives
  • Tom McFadden, American actor
  • Bryant McFadden (b. 1981), American NFL football cornerback
  • Cynthia McFadden (b. 1956), American anchor and correspondent for ABC News
  • Darren McFadden (b. 1987), American NFL football running back
  • Joseph Patrick McFadden (1947-2013), American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church, Bishop of Harrisburg (2010-2013)
  • James McFadden (b. 1983), Scottish footballer
  • Joseph "Joe" McFadden (b. 1975), Scottish television actor



  • A McFadden Chronology by William Thomas Skinner.

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  1. Black, George F. The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3).
  2. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  4. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  5. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  6. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  7. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  8. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  9. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  10. Innes, Thomas and Learney. Socts Heraldry A Practical Handbook on the Historical Principles and Modern Application of the Art of Science. London: Oliver and Boyd, 1934. Print.
  11. ...

The McFadden Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The McFadden 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 8 January 2014 at 16:24.

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