Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name O'cain originally appeared in Gaelic as O Cathain.
Early Origins of the O'cain family
The surname O'cain was first found in Derry, where they held a family seat
from very ancient times.
Early History of the O'cain family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'cain research.Another 147 words (10 lines of text) covering the year 1196 is included under the topic Early O'cain History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'cain Spelling Variations
Many spelling variations
of the surname O'cain 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 Cain, Caine, Kane, Kain, Cahan, O'Cahan, Kean, Keane, O'Keane, Ceane, Cean, Kahan, O'Kean, O'Kane, O'Kaine, Kaine, Keann, Cainn, Cainne, Kainn, Cahann, O'Cain and many more.
Early Notables of the O'cain family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early O'cain Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'cain family to the New World and Oceana
In the 19th century, thousands of Irish left their English-occupied homeland for North America. Like most new world settlers, the Irish initially settled on the eastern shores of the continent but began to move westward with the promise of owning land. The height of this Irish migration came during the Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s. With apparently nothing to lose, Irish people left on ships bound for North America and Australia
. Unfortunately a great many of these passengers lost their lives - the only thing many had left - to disease, starvation, and accidents during the long and dangerous journey. Those who did safely arrive in "the land of opportunities" were often used for the hard labor of building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. The Irish were critical to the quick development of the infrastructure of the United States and Canada. Passenger and immigration lists indicate that members of the O'cain family came to North America quite early:
O'cain Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- John O'Cain, who settled in Boston in 1847