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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016


All Irish surnames have a long, ancient Gaelic history behind them. The original Gaelic form of the name Conwy is O Conbhuidhe or O Connmhachain. The former of these names likely comes from the Gaelic word "condmach," while the latter probably comes from "cu buidhe." Conway is also an Anglicization of the names Mac Conmheadha or Mac Connmhaigh.

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The surname Conwy 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 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 Conway, Conboy, Convey, O'Conway, McConway and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Conwy research. Another 285 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1360, 1300, 1st , 1564, 1631, 1623, 1628, 1631, 1594, 1655, 1st , 1623, 1683, 1681, 1683, 1586, 1623, 1631, 1679, 1st , 1630, 1669, 1661 and 1669 are included under the topic Early Conwy History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 209 words (15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Conwy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish migrating out of their homeland in a great measure due to the oppressive imperial policies of the English government and landowners. Many of these Irish families sailed to North America aboard overcrowded passenger ships. By far, the largest influx of Irish immigrants to North America occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. These particular immigrants were instrumental in creation of the United States and Canada as major industrial nations because the many essential elements such as the roadways, canals, bridges, and railways required an enormous quantity of cheap labor, which these poor immigrants provided. Later generations of Irish in these countries also went on to make valuable contributions in such fields as the arts, commerce, politics, and education. Extensive research into immigration and passenger lists has revealed many early immigrants bearing the name Conwy: Edwin Conway of Worcestershire, England, who settled in the year 1645 in Virginia. From him was descended Mary Ball, the mother of George Washington.

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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.

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  1. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  2. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  3. Vicars, Sir Arthur. Index to the Prerogative Wills of Ireland 1536-1810. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  4. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. Print.
  5. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  6. Johnson, Daniel F. Irish Emigration to New England Through the Port of Saint John, New Brunswick Canada 1841-1849. Baltimore, Maryland: Clearfield, 1996. Print.
  7. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  8. Donovan, George Francis. The Pre-Revolutionary Irish in Massachusetts 1620-1775. Menasha, WI: Geroge Banta Publsihing Co., 1932. Print.
  9. Heraldic Scroll and Map of Family names and Origins of Ireland. Dublin: Mullins. Print.
  10. McDonnell, Frances. Emigrants from Ireland to America 1735-1743 A Transcription of the report of the Irish House of Commons into Enforced emigration to America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1331-5).
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The Conwy Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Conwy Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 15 May 2013 at 13:58.

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