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

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

Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Scanlon originally appeared in Gaelic as O Scannlain or Mac Scannlain, which are both derived from the word "scannal," which means "contention."

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Before widespread literacy came to Ireland, a name was often recorded under several different variations during the life of its bearer. Accordingly, numerous spelling variations were revealed in the search for the origin of the name Scanlon family name. Variations found include Scanlan, O'Scannell, O'Scanlan, O'Scanlon, MacScanlan, Scanlin and many more.

First found in County Louth (Irish: Lú) the smallest county in Ireland, located on the East coast, in the Province of Leinster.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Scanlon research. Another 394 words(28 lines of text) covering the year 1272 is included under the topic Early Scanlon History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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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 Scanlon or a variant listed above, including:

Scanlon Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Peter Scanlon, who landed in America in 1810
  • Brien Scanlon, who landed in New York, NY in 1812
  • Mancy Scanlon, who landed in New York, NY in 1816
  • Maney Scanlon, who arrived in New York, NY in 1816
  • John, Patrick and William Scanlon arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1870


Scanlon Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Henry Scanlon, who arrived in Arkansas in 1905

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  • Thomas Michael "Tim" Scanlon (b. 1940), Harvard philosopher
  • Bethany Kennedy Scanlon (b. 1975), American Christian author and speaker
  • Bill Scanlon (b. 1956), retired American tennis player, the only professional ever to achieve a golden set
  • Dewey Scanlon (1899-1924), American football head coach in the National Football League (1924 to 1929)
  • Joseph Scanlon (1970-1969), American Democratic politician who served in the Pennsylvania State Senate (1969 to 1970)
  • Michael Scanlon (1843-1929), Irish-born, American Major League Baseball manager (1884 to 1886)
  • Patrick J. "Pat" Scanlon (1861-1913), Canadian-born, American Major League Baseball outfielder
  • James Patrick Scanlon (b. 1952), American former Major League Baseball third baseman
  • Thomas E. Scanlon (1896-1955), American politician, Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1941 to 1945)
  • Brigadier-General Martin Francis Scanlon (1889-1980), American President of the Army Air Force Evaluation Board (1944-1946)

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  1. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  2. Woodham-Smith, Cecil. The Great Hunger Ireland 1845-1849. New York: Old Town Books, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-385-3).
  3. Rasmussen, Louis J. . San Francisco Ship Passenger Lists 4 Volumes Colma, California 1965 Reprint. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1978. Print.
  4. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  5. Grehan, Ida. Dictionary of Irish Family Names. Boulder: Roberts Rinehart, 1997. Print. (ISBN 1-57098-137-X).
  6. 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).
  7. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  8. MacLysaght, Edward. Mores Irish Familes. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0).
  9. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
  10. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Scanlon Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Scanlon 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 26 March 2014 at 13:52.

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