Show ContentsConaboy History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

All Irish surnames have a long, ancient Gaelic history behind them. The original Gaelic form of the name Conaboy is Ó Conbhuidhe or Ó Connmhachain. The former of these names likely comes from the Gaelic word "condmach," while the latter probably comes from "cu buidhe." 1

Conway is also an Anglicization of the names Mac Conmheadha or Mac Connmhaigh. One of the first records of the family was Gillabrighde MacConmidhe (fl. 1260) the Irish "historian and poet, a member of a family which for more than three centuries acted as hereditary poets of the Cinel Eoghain, the O'Neills, and their kindred septs. He was born about 1200, and wrote a poem on Cathal Croibhdhearg O'Conor during the lifetime of that king, who died in 1224. Brian O'Neill, chief of the Cinel Eoghain, once gave him twenty horned cows (fiche bo bheannach) for poem, and on another occasion, after the feativities of May day, gave him twenty cows, besides gold and clothing." 2 He was the progenitor of a long line of early Irish poets that were known into the mid 16th century.

Early Origins of the Conaboy family

The surname Conaboy was first found in Donegal (Irish: Dún na nGall), northwest Ireland in the province of Ulster, sometimes referred to as County Tyrconnel, and Connacht. The name is "the anglicized form of several different Irish surnames." 3 The name MacConway (McConway) was typically found in Donegal while the name Conway was found in nearby Sligo in the parish of Easky. 3

Early History of the Conaboy family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Conaboy research. Another 143 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1360, 1420, 1434, 1493, 1507, 1542, 1564, 1583, 1586, 1594, 1607, 1623, 1628, 1630, 1631, 1655, 1661, 1669, 1679, 1681 and 1683 are included under the topic Early Conaboy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Conaboy Spelling Variations

During the Middle Ages, a standardized literary language known by the general population of Ireland was a thing of fiction. When a person's name was recorded by one of the few literate scribes, it was up that particular scribe to decide how to spell an individual's name. So a person could have several spelling variations of his name recorded during a single lifetime. Research into the name Conaboy revealed many variations, including Conway, Conboy, Convey, O'Conway, McConway and others.

Early Notables of the Conaboy family

Prominent amongst the family at this time was Edward Conway, 1st Viscount Conway PC (1564-1631), an English soldier and statesman, Secretary of State in 1623, Lord President of the Council (1628-1631); his son, Edward Conway, 2nd Viscount Conway PC (1594-1655), an English politician, military commander and peer; and his son, Edward Conway, 1st Earl of Conway PC...
Another 56 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Conaboy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Conaboy family

In the 18th and 19th centuries, thousands of Irish families fled an Ireland that was forcibly held through by England through its imperialistic policies. A large portion of these families crossed the Atlantic to the shores of North America. The fate of these families depended on when they immigrated and the political allegiances they showed after they arrived. Settlers that arrived before the American War of Independence may have moved north to Canada at the war's conclusion as United Empire Loyalists. Such Loyalists were granted land along the St. Lawrence River and the Niagara Peninsula. Those that fought for the revolution occasionally gained the land that the fleeing Loyalist vacated. After this period, free land and an agrarian lifestyle were not so easy to come by in the East. So when seemingly innumerable Irish immigrants arrived during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s, free land for all was out of the question. These settlers were instead put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. Whenever they came, Irish settlers made an inestimable contribution to the building of the New World. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the Irish name Conaboy or a variant listed above, including: Edwin Conway of Worcestershire, England, who settled in the year 1645 in Virginia. From him was descended Mary Ball, the mother of George Washington.

Contemporary Notables of the name Conaboy (post 1700) +

  • Richard Paul Conaboy (1925-2018), American jurist, Senior Judge of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania (1992-2018)

The Conaboy 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: Fide et amore
Motto Translation: By fidelity and love.

  1. MacLysaght, Edward, The Surnames of Ireland. Ireland: Irish Academic Press, sixth edition, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2366-3)
  2. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  3. MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7) on Facebook