Show ContentsArney History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Irish name Arney has a long Gaelic heritage to its credit. Generally, the original Gaelic form of the name Arney is said to be O Cearnaigh, from the word "cearnach," which means "victorious." However, in some instances, especially the roots of the present day spelling of Kearney, the surname derives from the Gaelic "O Catharnaigh," meaning "warlike."

Early Origins of the Arney family

The surname Arney was first found in County Mayo (Irish: Maigh Eo) located on the West coast of the Republic of Ireland in the province of Connacht, where they held a family seat from ancient times and were a branch of the Ui Fiachrach.

The MacCarney (McCarney) variant is "Mac Cearnaigh and the family was originally seated at Ballymacarney, Co. Meath. According to records from the sixteenth century to the present day it must be regarded as belonging to Ulster: in the Fiants we find a MacCarney among the followers of Rory O'Donnell; in the Hearth Money Rolls of the l660's the name appears frequently in Cos. Monaghan and Armagh; and comparatively recent sources indicate that they are still mainly located in that part of Ulster. It would appear, however, that the prefix Mac has been widely dropped, the name being now registered as Carney or Kearney. Probably the most remarkable person of this name was Susan MacKarney who died in Dublin in 1751 reputedly 120 years of age. She was a beggarwoman who had £250 secreted in the mattress of her death bed." [1]

Early History of the Arney family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Arney research. Another 230 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1199, 1721, 1529, 1539 and 1543 are included under the topic Early Arney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Arney Spelling Variations

Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname Arney 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. Carney, Carnie, McCarney, MacCarney, O'Carney, Kearney and many more.

Early Notables of the Arney family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family at this time was Carney of Cashel and John Kearney of Fethard, prominent in court and legal circles in England. In Scotland, "Patrick Makcarny was one of...
Another 30 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Arney Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Arney Ranking

In the United States, the name Arney is the 13,119th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [2]

United States Arney migration to the United States +

During the 19th century thousands of impoverished Irish families made the long journey to British North America and the United States. These people were leaving a land that had become beset with poverty, lack of opportunity, and hunger. In North America, they hoped to find land, work, and political and religious freedoms. Although the majority of the immigrants that survived the long sea passage did make these discoveries, it was not without much perseverance and hard work: by the mid-19th century land suitable for agriculture was short supply, especially in British North America, in the east; the work available was generally low paying and physically taxing construction or factory work; and the English stereotypes concerning the Irish, although less frequent and vehement, were, nevertheless, present in the land of freedom, liberty, and equality for all men. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Research into passenger and immigration lists has brought forth evidence of the early members of the Arney family in North America:

Arney Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Edward Arney, who landed in Virginia in 1657 [3]
Arney Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Arney, who landed in New Jersey in 1739 [3]
  • Joseph Arney, who arrived in New Jersey in 1764 [3]
Arney Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Dominick Arney, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1836 [3]
  • J Arney, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]

Australia Arney migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Arney Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Joseph Arney, (b. 1805), aged 26, English wheel wright who was convicted in Southampton, Hampshire, England for life for machine breaking, transported aboard the "Eleanor" on 26th June 1831, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [4]
  • Mr. William Arney, (b. 1803), aged 28, English carpenter who was convicted in Southampton, Hampshire, England for 7 years for machine breaking, transported aboard the "Eliza" on 2nd February 1831, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [5]
  • Miss. Louisa Christian Arney, British Convict who was convicted in London, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 9th March 1847, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [6]
  • William Arney, aged 21, a farm labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Marion" [7]

New Zealand Arney migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Arney Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Emma Arney, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Gertrude" in 1863 [8]
  • Miss Emma Arney, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Gertrude" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 9th February 1863 [9]
  • Alfred G. W. Arney, aged 21, a woodworker, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874

Contemporary Notables of the name Arney (post 1700) +

  • Dewey B. Arney, American Republican politician, Candidate for Missouri State House of Representatives from Jackson County 5th District, 1940 [10]
  • Angela Arney, English author of romance novels since 1984 from 1997, 19th Chairman of the Romantic Novelists' Association (1997–1999)
  • George Arney, British journalist for BBC, former host of The World Today until 2009
  • Sir George Alfred Arney (1810-1883), British-born, second Chief Justice of New Zealand (1858-1875)

The Arney Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Sustine et abstine
Motto Translation: Sustain and abstain.

  1. MacLysaght, Edward, Supplement to Irish Families. Baltimore: Genealogical Book Company, 1964. Print.
  2. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  3. 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)
  4. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 9th February 2022). Retrieved from
  5. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 28th February 2022). Retrieved from
  6. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th February 2020). Retrieved from
  7. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) MARION 1851 - HER HISTORY. Retrieved
  8. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 12th December 2018). Retrieved from
  9. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from
  10. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 7) . Retrieved from on Facebook