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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

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

The Curley surname is an Anglicization, derived from the Irish Gaelic "Mac Toirdhealbhaigh."

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Corley, MacCorley, Curley, Curlee, Curling, Kirley, McKerley, McCurley, McCurly and many more.

First found in the Connacht counties of Galway and Roscommon (Irish: Ros Comáin) located in central Ireland in the province of Connacht, where the places names Ballymacurley and Curley's Island can be found. There is also legend in Ireland, that the name descends from Maolduin, the second son of the 164th Monarch of Ireland, who founded the clanns of Muldoon. Maolduin's great, great grandson was Clercen, whose name means "curly one." Clercen founded the Clan O'Cleircen, which anglicized is Curley or Curling.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Curley research. Another 129 words(9 lines of text) covering the years 130 and 1305 are included under the topic Early Curley History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Curley Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Alice Curley, who settled in Virginia in 1636
  • Alice Curley, who arrived in Virginia in 1636
  • Charles Curley who settled in America in 1654

Curley Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • James Curley, who landed in Maryland in 1822
  • Margaret Curley, aged 30, landed in New York, NY in 1849
  • Israel Curley, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • William M Curley, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • P Curley, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851


Curley Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • Owen Curley, aged 24, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1834 aboard the ship "Edwin" from Dublin
  • Rose Curley, aged 21, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1834 aboard the ship "Edwin" from Dublin
  • Patrick Curley, aged 23, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1834 aboard the brig "Trafalgar" from Galway
  • Biddy and Margaret Curley, who settled in Quebec in 1849

Curley Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Daniel Curley arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Mary Ann" in 1849
  • Jane Curley, aged 20, a farm servant, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Bucephalus"

Curley Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • Daniel Curley, aged 20, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Strathnaver" in 1874
  • Mary Curley, aged 16, a housekeeper, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arawa" in 1884

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  • James Michael Curley (1874-1958), American political leader, mayor of Boston, Governor of Massachusetts
  • Michael Joseph Curley (1879-1947), American who was the 10th Archbishop of Baltimore and first Archbishop of Washington
  • Walter Joseph Patrick Curley (b. 1922), United States Ambassador to France from 1989 to 1993 and the United States Ambassador to Ireland from 1975 to 1977
  • Carlo Curley (b. 1952), American classical concert organist
  • Thomas "Tom" Curley (b. 1948), American journalist appointed President of the Associated Press, the world's largest news organization in 2003
  • Miss Alice Curley (d. 1915), American 3rd Class passenger from New York, New York, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • James Curley (1796-1889), Irish-American astronomer
  • Ian Curley (b. 1972), British auto racing driver
  • Marianne Curley (b. 1959), Australian author best known for her Guardians of Time Trilogy and Old Magic books


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  1. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  2. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  3. Somerset Fry, Peter and Fiona Somerset Fry. A History of Ireland. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1993. Print. (ISBN 1-56619-215-3).
  4. Heraldic Scroll and Map of Family names and Origins of Ireland. Dublin: Mullins. Print.
  5. Harris, Ruth-Ann and B. Emer O'Keefe. The Search for Missing Friends Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in the Boston Pilot Volume II 1851-1853. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1991. Print.
  6. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  7. MacLysaght, Edward. Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7).
  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. Sullivan, Sir Edward. The Book of Kells 3rd Edition. New York: Crescent Books, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-517-61987-3).
  11. ...

The Curley Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Curley 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 2 May 2015 at 03:42.

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