MacMartin History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The original Gaelic form of MacMartin was Mac Giolla Mhartain. This name denotes a devotee of St. Martin. This saint founded the first monastery in France c. 360 and was made Bishop of Tours in 372. He is the patron saint of publicans and inn-keepers and is also a patron saint of France.
Early Origins of the MacMartin family
The surname MacMartin was first found in County Galway (Irish: Gaillimh) part of the province of Connacht, located on the west coast of the Island, where they had been granted lands by Strongbow after the Norman invasion of Ireland in 1172, and became one of the "Tribes of Galway." Kilmartin is a small village in Argyll and Bute, in western Scotland. It is best known as the center of Kilmartin Glen, one of the best examples of standing stones in Scotland. Kilmartin Castle, a small tower house, dating from about 1580, stands above the village and was the property of the Campbells.
Important Dates for the MacMartin family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacMartin research. Another 76 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1652, 1722, 1600 and 1648 are included under the topic Early MacMartin History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacMartin Spelling Variations
Pronunciation, rather than spelling, guided scribes and church officials when recording names during the Middle Ages. This practice often resulted in one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname MacMartin are preserved in these old documents. The various spellings of the name that were found include Gilmartin, Kilmartin, MacKilmartin, MacGilmartin and many more.
Early Notables of the MacMartin family (pre 1700)
Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacMartin Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacMartin family
The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish families leaving Ireland for the distant shores of North America and Australia. These families often left their homeland hungry, penniless, and destitute do to the policies of England. Those Irish immigrants that survived the long sea passage initially settled on the eastern seaboard of the continent. Some, however, moved north to a then infant Canada as United Empire Loyalists after ironically serving with the English in the American War of Independence. Others that remained in America later joined the westward migration in search of land. The greatest influx of Irish immigrants, though, came to North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Thousands left Ireland at this time for North America, and those who arrived were immediately put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. In fact, the foundations of today's powerful nations of the United Sates and Canada were to a larger degree built by the Irish. Archival documents indicate that members of the MacMartin family relocated to North American shores quite early: Daniel and Pat Gilmartin who arrived in New York State in 1803; Francis Gilmartin settled in New York State in 1795; Pat Gilmartine settled in New York in 1854..
Contemporary Notables of the name MacMartin (post 1700)
- Daniel George MacMartin (1870-1921), Canadian treaty commissioner for the Government of Ontario for Treaty 9 (1905-1906)