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

Origins Available: English, Irish

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

Irish names tend to vary widely in their spelling and overall form. The original Gaelic form of the name Trainor is Mac Threinfir, from the words trean, meaning strong, and fear meaning man. This name is often rendered MacTraynor or MacTreanor in English, but the Anglicizations Mac Crainor and MacCreanor are actually more phonetically accurate.

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Many spelling variations of the surname Trainor can be found in the archives. One reason for these variations is that ancient scribes and church officials recorded names as they were pronounced, often resulting in a single person being recorded under several different spellings. The different spellings that were found include Traynor, Trainor, Trayner 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 and were associated with the family of Armstrong which settled in that county from the English/Scottish border.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Trainor research. Another 205 words(15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Trainor History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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A great mass of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century, seeking relief from various forms of social, religious, and economic discrimination. This Irish exodus was primarily to North America. If the migrants survived the long ocean journey, many unfortunately would find more discrimination in the colonies of British North America and the fledgling United States of America. These newly arrived Irish were, however, wanted as a cheap source of labor for the many large agricultural and industrial projects that were essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the western world. Early immigration and passenger lists indicate many people bearing the Trainor name:

Trainor Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Pat Trainor, who arrived in New York, NY in 1812
  • Peter Trainor, aged 48, landed in New York in 1812
  • Bernard, Francis, Henry, Hugh, James, John, and Michael Trainor, all settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1838 and 1878
  • Phillip Trainor, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1844

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  • Mary Ellen Trainor (b. 1950), American film and television actress
  • Gerald William "Jerry" Trainor (b. 1977), American actor, comedian and voice actor
  • Bernard E Trainor (b. 1928), retired Marine Corps lieutenant general and military analyst for NBC
  • Frank Trainor (b. 1954), Canadian singer and songwriter
  • Sir Richard Hughes "Rick" Trainor KBE, FRHS, FKC (b. 1948), Principal of King's College London
  • Dr. James H Trainor (1935-2003), associate director and chief scientist of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center


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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. 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.
  3. Tepper, Michael Ed & Elizabeth P. Bentley Transcriber. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800-1819. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1986. Print.
  4. 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).
  5. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  6. Sullivan, Sir Edward. The Book of Kells 3rd Edition. New York: Crescent Books, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-517-61987-3).
  7. Somerset Fry, Peter and Fiona Somerset Fry. A History of Ireland. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1993. Print. (ISBN 1-56619-215-3).
  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. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. O'Hart, John. Irish Pedigress 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4).
  11. ...

The Trainor Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Trainor 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 6 March 2014 at 15:05.

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