Chain History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

All Irish surnames have a unique and often romantic meaning. The name Chain originally appeared in Gaelic as Mac Seain, which translates as son of John.

Early Origins of the Chain family

The surname Chain was first found in County Kerry (Irish:Ciarraí) part of the former County Desmond (14th-17th centuries), located in Southwestern Ireland, in Munster province, where they were granted lands by Strongbow when he invaded Ireland in 1172.

Early History of the Chain family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Chain research. Another 97 words (7 lines of text) covering the year 1750 is included under the topic Early Chain History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Chain Spelling Variations

The spelling of names in Ireland during the Middle Ages was rarely consistent. This inconsistency was due to the scribes and church officials' attempts to record orally defined names in writing. The common practice of recording names as they sounded resulted in spelling variations such as McShane, McShain, McShaen, MacShane, MacShain, MacShaen, MacCheyne, McCheyne, McSheyne, MacSheyne, McCheine, McChain, MacCheine, MacChain, McChein, McShaney, McShanie and many more.

Early Notables of the Chain family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Chain Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


Australia Chain migration to Australia +

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

Chain Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. William Chain, English convict who was convicted in Bath, Somerset, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Equestrian" on 27th August 1852, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Island) [1]

Contemporary Notables of the name Chain (post 1700) +

  • Sir Ernst Boris Chain (1906-1979), German-born British biochemist, and a 1945 co-recipient of the Nobel Prize


  1. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 16th May 2022). https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/equestrian


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