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Cleary History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



The name Cleary originally appeared in Gaelic as O Cleirigh, from the word "cleireach," which means "clerk" or "cleric." The name denotes a descendant of Cleireach, who was born around 820 AD, and descended from Guaire the Hospitable, the famous king of Connacht.

Early Origins of the Cleary family


The surname Cleary was first found in County Galway. A descendent of Guaire, Cleireach, the namesake of the O'Clerys, was born around 820 AD, about two hundred years before hereditary surnames came into general use. [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
However, the name O'Clery first appeared around 950 AD, making it one of the earliest recorded hereditary surnames. The O'Clerys were the dominant sept in what is now the diocese of Kilmacduagh in the county of Galway, but declined in power until they were forced out of their original territory by the mid-13th century. The most important branch of the family settled in Counties Derry and Donegal and became prominent historians and poets. The branch that settled in County Cavan has seemingly all but vanished. However, the English surname Clarke has been widely substituted for O'Clery there, following the Plantation of Ulster, and many Irish Clarkes may actually be O'Clerys, rather than descendants of English settlers. Another branch is still fairly common in the counties of Kilkenny, Waterford, and Tipperary. The name is presently found mostly in Munster and Dublin.

Early History of the Cleary family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cleary research.
Another 191 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1636, 1450, 1507, 1507, 1781 and 1860 are included under the topic Early Cleary History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cleary Spelling Variations


Lacking standardized spellings, scribes and church officials recorded people's name according to how they sounded. This practice often led to the misleading result of one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname Cleary are preserved in the archival documents of the period. The various spellings of the name that were found include Clery, Cleary, Claree, Clarey, Cleare, Clearey, Clerey, O'Cleary, O'Clery, Macchlery, Clerkin, Clark and many more.

Early Notables of the Cleary family (pre 1700)


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

Migration of the Cleary family to the New World and Oceana


A great wave of Irish migration occurred during the 19th century as a direct result of English colonial rule and tight-fisted absentee landlords. Many of these Irish immigrants boarded passenger ships bound for North America. Those who migrated early enough were given land in either British North America or the United States; those who came in the late 19th century were typically employed in industrial centers as laborers. At whatever age they undertook the dangerous passage to North America, those Irish immigrants were essential to the speedy development of the two infant nations to which they arrived, whether they broke and settled land, helped build canals, bridges, and railroads, or produced products for consumer consumption. An examination of immigration and passenger lists has uncovered a large number of immigrants bearing the name Cleary or one of its variants:

Cleary Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • George Cleary, who was on record in Barbados plantation between the years 1679 and 1680

Cleary Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Darby Cleary, who settled in America in 1736
  • John Cleary, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1764 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)
  • James Cleary, who arrived in New York in 1789 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)

Cleary Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Edmund Cleary, who landed in America in 1806 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)
  • William Cleary, who arrived in America in 1810 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)
  • Andrew Cleary, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1816 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)
  • Daniel Cleary, who landed in New York in 1820 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)
  • Philip Cleary, who landed in New York in 1820 [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
    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)
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Cleary Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • John Cleary, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
  • John Cleary, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • John Cleary, who arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1752
  • John Cleary, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1776
  • Richard Cleary, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1776

Cleary Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • James Cleary, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1822
  • William Cleary and his wife and five children who arrived in Quebec in 1825
  • James Cleary, aged 18, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "Britannia" from Sligo, Ireland
  • John Cleary, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1843

Cleary Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • John Cleary, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Birman" in 1840 [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BIRMAN 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840Birman.htm
  • Joseph Cleary, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hindoo" in 1848 [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HINDOO 1848. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1848Hindoo.gif
  • Margaret Cleary, aged 17, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Elgin" in 1849 [5]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ELGIN 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Elgin.htm
  • Margaret Cleary, aged 17, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Elgin" [5]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ELGIN 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Elgin.htm
  • Cornelius Cleary, aged 45, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Prince Regent" [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) PRINCE REGENT 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851PrinceRegent.htm
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Cleary Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Ann Cleary, aged 18, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Seringapatam" in 1856
  • Mary A. Cleary, aged 23, who arrived in Lyttelton, New Zealand aboard the ship "Apelles" in 1874
  • Robert Cleary, aged 58, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Assaye" in 1874
  • Susan Cleary, aged 51, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Assaye" in 1874
  • Thomas Cleary, aged 7, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Assaye" in 1874
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Cleary (post 1700)


  • Robert Barry Cleary (1936-2015), American gold medalist ice hockey player at the 1960 Winter Olympics
  • William J. Cleary (1870-1952), American politician from the U.S. state of Michigan
  • Thomas Cleary (b. 1949), American author & translator
  • Nikki Cleary (b. 1988), American singer
  • Jon Cleary (b. 1962), American musician
  • Brian P. Cleary (b. 1959), American humorist, poet and author
  • William John "Bill" Cleary (b. 1934), American gold and silver medalist hockey player
  • Beverly Cleary (1916-1981), American author, recipient of the 1981 National Book Award in category Children's Fiction and the 1984 Newbery Medal
  • Robert J Cleary (b. 1955), American lawyer, lead prosecutor in the Unabomber case (1996-1998) and the US attorney for New Jersey in 1999-2001
  • Father Michael Cleary (b. 1993), Irish Roman Catholic priest
  • ... (Another 16 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Cleary family



HMS Prince of Wales

  • Mr. George Cleary, British Marine, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [7]CITATION[CLOSE]
    HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html

Suggested Readings for the name Cleary


  • Clary (also Cleary) Genealogy by Ralph Shearer Rowland.

Cleary Family Crest Products



See Also



Citations


  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BIRMAN 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840Birman.htm
  4. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HINDOO 1848. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1848Hindoo.gif
  5. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ELGIN 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Elgin.htm
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) PRINCE REGENT 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851PrinceRegent.htm
  7. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html

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