Cane History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Cane originally appeared in Gaelic as O Cathain.

Early Origins of the Cane family

The surname Cane was first found in Derry, where the name literally meant 'Cathan's Son.' "This name may be rendered 'warrior'(cath, 'a battle'). The O'Cathains, now O'Kanes, were of the race of Eoghan, who was son of Niall of the Nine Hostages, Monarch of Ireland, who died A.D. 406." [1]

Saint Cainner or Cannera (d. 530?), appears in the martyrology of Tamlacht and other ancient lists of Irish saints on 28 Jan. "According to Colgan, she was born of noble parents in the district of Bentraighe (Bantry) in South Munster. " [2]

We would be remiss if we did not mention the English and Welsh origins of the name. In England, Yorkshire was a popular location for the family. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 included: Johannes Cayne, Kirkby Overblow; and Johannes Cayne, Knaresborough. [3]

"Mauritius de Cadomo held lands in Barony, Devonshire, in 1083. William de Cadomo occurs in Norfolk, Walter de Cadomo in Norfolk, holding great estates, 1086. Renebald de Caen occurs in 1130 (Rot. Pip.). The family of De Caen, Caan, &c., is often mentioned later. In Normandy it occurs in the 12th cent. very frequently." [4]

In Wales, "Rhys Cain (16th cent.), was a Welsh poet of the latter part of the sixteenth century, born at Trawsfynydd in Merionethshire, a village on the river Cain, whence he took his surname." [2]

Early History of the Cane family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cane research. Another 147 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1196 and 1672 are included under the topic Early Cane History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cane Spelling Variations

Just like the English language, the Gaelic language of Ireland was not standardized in the Middle Ages. Therefore, one's name was often recorded under several different spellings during the life of its bearer. Spelling variations revealed in the search for the origins of the Cane family name 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 Cane family (pre 1700)

Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cane Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Cane migration to the United States +

Irish families left their homeland in astonishing numbers during the 19th century in search of a better life. Although individual reasons vary, most of these Irish families suffered from extreme poverty, lack of work opportunities, and exorbitant rents in their homeland. Many decided to travel to Australia or North America in the hopes of finding greater opportunities and land. The Irish immigrants that came to North America initially settled on the East Coast, often in major centers such as Boston or New York. But like the many other cultures to settle in North America, the Irish traveled to almost any region they felt held greater promise; as a result, many Irish with gold fever moved all the way out to the Pacific coast. Others before that time left for land along the St. Lawrence River and the Niagara Peninsula, or the Maritimes as United Empire Loyalists, for many Irish did choose to side with the English during the American War of Independence. The earliest wave of Irish migration, however, occurred during the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s. An examination of early immigration and passenger lists has revealed many people bearing the Cane name:

Cane Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • George Cane, who landed in Virginia in 1622 [5]
  • Patrick Cane, who landed in Virginia in 1637 [5]
  • Margarett Cane, who landed in Virginia in 1643 [5]
  • Edward Cane, who arrived in Maryland in 1648 [5]
  • Thomas Cane, who landed in Maryland in 1649 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Cane Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Hugh Cane, who landed in Virginia in 1716 [5]
  • Germain Cane, aged 26, who arrived in Louisiana in 1719 [5]
  • Joanis Cane, aged 22, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1741 [5]
  • Roger Cane, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1745 [5]
  • Catherine Cane, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1746-1747 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Cane Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Alexander Cane, who landed in America in 1803 [5]
  • Charles Cane, who landed in New London, Connecticut in 1811 [5]
  • James Cane, who arrived in America in 1811 [5]
  • Peter Cane, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1879 [5]

Canada Cane migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Cane Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Arthur Cane, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • James Cane, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
  • Thais Cane, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Timothy Cane, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
  • Timothy Cane, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Cane Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • James Cane, aged 30, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Ann & Mary" from Cork, Ireland
  • Henry Cane, who arrived in Victoria, British Columbia in 1862

Australia Cane migration to Australia +

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

Cane Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Patrick Cane, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Andromeda" on November 13, 1832, settling in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Biddy Cane, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hooghly" in 1846 [7]
  • G. Cane, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Athenian" in 1849 [8]
  • Henry Cane, English convict from Staffordshire, who was transported aboard the "Adelaide" on August 08, 1849, settling in Van Diemen's Land and Port Phillip, Australia [9]
  • Bridget Cane, aged 21, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "William Hammond" [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Cane 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:

Cane Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Hugh Cane, Scottish settler travelling from Clyde aboard the ship "Robert Henderson" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 5th October 1861 [11]
  • Mr. Peter Cane, Scottish settler travelling from Clyde aboard the ship "Robert Henderson" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 5th October 1861 [11]
  • Mr. John Cane, Scottish settler travelling from Clyde aboard the ship "Robert Henderson" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 5th October 1861 [11]

Contemporary Notables of the name Cane (post 1700) +

  • Mrs. W. O. Cane, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Tennessee, 1924 [12]
  • Rudolph C. Cane, American Democrat politician, Member of Maryland State House of Delegates District 37-A; Elected 1998; Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Maryland, 2000 [12]
  • Richard P. Cane, American politician, Honorary Consul for Cuba at Louisville, Kentucky, 1905 [12]
  • Jacob Cane, American politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly from Kings County 11th District, 1926, 1927 [12]
  • Arnold J. Cane (b. 1914), American Republican politician, Member of Wisconsin State Assembly from Winnebago County 3rd District, 1951-60 [12]
  • Robert Cane (1807-1858), Irish naturalist, was born at Kilkenny in 1807 [13]


  1. ^ Moore, A.W., Manx Names. London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1906. Print
  2. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  5. ^ 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)
  6. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 27) Andromeda voyage to New South Wales, Australia in 1832 with 186 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/andromeda/1832
  7. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HOOGHLY 1846. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1846Hooghly.htm
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The ATHENIAN 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Athenian.htm
  9. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 17) Adelaide voyage to Van Diemen's Land and Port Phillip, Australia in 1849 with 303 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/adelaide/1849
  10. ^ South Australian Register Wednesday 20th January 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Willaim Hammond 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/williamhammond1854.shtml.
  11. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  12. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  13. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 31 Oct. 2019


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