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Donnelly History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Donnelly originally appeared in Gaelic as O Donnghaile, derived from the words "donn," which means brown, and "gal," which means valor.

Early Origins of the Donnelly family


The surname Donnelly was first found in County Donegal. Later, the sept expanded eastward and became based at Ballydonnelly in the county of Tyrone. The name continues to be common in this area of Ireland today. The name is believed to be directly descended from King Niall of the Nine Hostages, the great Irish general/king who died by the River Seine in France about 365 A.D., after soundly defeating the Romans and being instrumental in their return to the south. Niall made King Arthur's exploits seem rather small by comparison. The Donnelly chief was always elected Chief Marshall of the O'Neill forces and their exploits have filled the pages of Irish history compiled by the Four Masters. They are a part of the great Clann Eoghan(Owen). They claim to be seventeenth in descent from the great King Niall, and their territories were at Ballydonnelly in County Tyrone.

Early History of the Donnelly family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Donnelly research.
Another 221 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1603, 1641, 1650 and 1716 are included under the topic Early Donnelly History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Donnelly Spelling Variations


Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname Donnelly were found. These included One reason for the many variations is that scribes and church officials often spelled an individual's name as it sounded. This imprecise method often led to many versions. Donnely, Donnelly, Donelly, O'Donnelly, O'Donelly, Donnolly, Donnally, Donolly, Donnilly, Donnelie, Donneley, O'Donnally and many more.

Early Notables of the Donnelly family (pre 1700)


Another 28 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Donnelly Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Donnelly family to the New World and Oceana


A massive amount of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century for North America and Australia in hopes of finding more opportunities and an escape from discrimination and oppression. A great portion of these migrants arrived on the eastern shores of the North American continent. Although they were generally poor and destitute, and, therefore, again discriminated against, these Irish people were heartily welcomed for the hard labor involved in the construction of railroads, canals, roadways, and buildings. Many others were put to work in the newly established factories or agricultural projects that were so essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the world. The Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s initiated the largest wave of Iris immigration. Early North American immigration and passenger lists have revealed a number of people bearing the name Donnelly or a variant listed above:

Donnelly Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Peter Donnelly, who landed in America in 1760-1763 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Bryan, Peter and Thomas Donnelly, who landed in America in 1763

Donnelly Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Catherine and Hugh Donnelly who settled in New York in 1803
  • Terrence Donnelly, who arrived in America in 1810 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • William Donnelly, who landed in New York, NY in 1811 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • William Donnelly, who landed in New York, NY in 1811 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • Hugh Donnelly, who landed in America in 1811 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Donnelly Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Patrick Donnelly, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1808
  • Jane Donnelly, aged 20, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "John & Mary" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Owen Donnelly, aged 33, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "John & Mary" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Mary Donnelly, aged 30, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "John & Mary" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Henry Donnelly, aged 6, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "John & Mary" from Belfast, Ireland
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Donnelly Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • John Donnelly, a farrier, who arrived in New South Wales, Australia sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • Catherine Donnelly, aged 22, Irish convict from Cavan, who was transported aboard the "Arabian" in November 22nd, 1846, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Arabian voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1846 with 26 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/arabian/1846
  • Bridget Donnelly, aged 17, a housemaid, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Navarino" [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) NAVARINO 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Navarino.htm
  • Ellen Donnelly, aged 19, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Navarino" [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) NAVARINO 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Navarino.htm
  • Jane Donnelly, aged 39, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Navarino" [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) NAVARINO 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Navarino.htm
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Donnelly Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Patrick Donnelly, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • William Donnelly, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Jane Gifford" in 1842
  • Eliza Donnelly, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Jane Gifford" in 1842
  • James Donnelly, aged 42, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Inchinnan" in 1852
  • Mary Donnelly, aged 30, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Inchinnan" in 1852
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Donnelly (post 1700)


  • Kenneth J. Donnelly (1950-2017), American politician, Massachusetts state senator for the Fourth Middlesex district
  • Joseph Simon "Joe" Donnelly Sr. (b. 1955), American politician, United States Senator from Indiana (2013-)
  • Eleanor C. Donnelly (1838-1917), American Catholic poet, short story writer and biographer, nicknamed "The Poet of the Pure Soul"
  • Elaine Catherine Corrigan O'Brien Donnelly (1955-2014), American flight instructor and politician
  • Ted Donnelly, American jazz artist
  • Dorothy Donnelly (1880-1928), American musical actress
  • Donal Donnelly (b. 1931), Irish-American actor
  • Ignatius Donnelly (1831-1901), American politician and writer
  • Charles Donnelly (1914-1937), Irish poet and political activist
  • Dick Donnelly (1942-2016), Scottish footballer, journalist and radio broadcaster
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Donnelly family



Halifax Explosion

  • Miss May  Donnelly (1911-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  • Mrs. Sarah  Donnelly (1890-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  • Miss Ethel  Donnelly (1917-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance

RMS Lusitania

  • Mr. Peter Donnelly, English Fireman from England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [5]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  • Mr. John Donnelly, English Fireman from Liverpool, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [5]CITATION[CLOSE]
    Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/

Suggested Readings for the name Donnelly


  • Genealogy in Convenient Form Ralph W. Cathell.

Donnelly Family Crest Products



See Also



Citations


  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  2. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Arabian voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1846 with 26 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/arabian/1846
  3. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) NAVARINO 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Navarino.htm
  4. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  5. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/

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