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

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

Gaelic, otherwise known as Early Modern Irish, was used in Ireland from around the year 1200 until the 18th century. It is from this language that we found the first references to the name Meaney as O Maonaigh. This is derived from the word maonach, meaning wealthy.

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A name was often recorded during the Middle Ages under several different spelling variations during the life of its bearer because literacy was rare there was no real push to clearly define any of the languages found in the British Isles at that time. Variations found of the name Meaney include Mooney, Moony, O'Mooney, Meeny, O'Meany, Meany, O'Meeny, O'Mainy, Meaney and many more.

First found in County Offaly (Irish: Uíbh Fháilí) originally the Kingdom of Uí Failghe, located in central Ireland in the Province of Leinster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Meaney research. Another 383 words(27 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Meaney History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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In the 19th century, thousands of Irish left their English-occupied homeland for North America. Like most new world settlers, the Irish initially settled on the eastern shores of the continent but began to move westward with the promise of owning land. The height of this Irish migration came during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. With apparently nothing to lose, Irish people left on ships bound for North America and Australia. Unfortunately a great many of these passengers lost their lives - the only thing many had left - to disease, starvation, and accidents during the long and dangerous journey. Those who did safely arrive in "the land of opportunities" were often used for the hard labor of building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. The Irish were critical to the quick development of the infrastructure of the United States and Canada. Passenger and immigration lists indicate that members of the Meaney family came to North America quite early: Andrew, Arthur, Catherine, Daniel, Hugh, James, John, Mary, Michael, Patrick, Richard, Thomas and William Mooney all arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1840 and 1860.

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  • Kevin Gerard Meaney (b. 1956), American stand-up comedian and actor
  • Colm J. Meaney (b. 1953), Irish actor second only to Michael Dorn in most appearances in Star Trek episodes
  • John Meaney (b. 1957), British science fiction author


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  1. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  2. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
  3. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  4. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  5. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  6. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  7. 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.
  8. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. Print.
  9. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  10. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  11. ...

The Meaney Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Meaney 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 June 2013 at 08:22.

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