Cooussack History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
When the Anglo-Normans began to settle in Ireland, they brought the tradition of local surnames to an island which already had a Gaelic naming system of hereditary surnames established. Unlike the Irish, the Anglo-Normans had an affinity for local surnames. Local surnames, such as Cooussack, were formed from the name of a place or a geographical landmark. Often, these place names were prefixed by "de," which means "from" in French: in later years, the prefix sometimes became joined to the name, or was sometimes dropped. The Cooussack family name is thought to have come from any of several places named Cussac in France; such as Cussac in Guienne (Guyenne), Cussac in Limousin, or from Cussac in Auvergne. These place names are thought to derive from Cucius or Cussius, a Romano-Gallic personal name, along with the suffix "-acum." After the name came to Ireland, it took on the Gaelic form Ciomhsóg. However, in the county of Clare, the Gaelic form of the name is Mac Iosóg.
Early Origins of the Cooussack family
The surname Cooussack was first found in County Meath (Irish: An Mhí) anciently part of the kingdom of Brega, located in Eastern Ireland, in the province of Leinster, where Jeoffrey Le Cusack was first recorded. He was named after a town of that name in France and came to Ireland shortly after the English invasion. Adam Cusack, his grandson "slew William Barret and his brothers in Connaught, on account of a quarrel about lands " in 1282. 
Another reference has a slightly different twist on the origin in France. In this reference, the name "is derived from a place in Guienne, France, and was first anglicized as de Cussac."  Whichever origin is true, the occurrence of the name in England was indeed rare.
Early History of the Cooussack family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cooussack research. Another 194 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1211, 1280, 1300, 1687, 1770, 1788, 1861, 1409, 1415, 1490, 1571, 1541, 1542, 1550 and 1551 are included under the topic Early Cooussack History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Cooussack Spelling Variations
During the lifetime of an individual person, his name was often spelt by church officials and medieval scribes the way it sounded. An examination of the many different origins of each name has revealed many spelling variations for the name: Cusack, Cusacke, Cussack, Cossack, Cosack, Cewsack, Ceusack, Cowsack, Coussack, Cussach, Cussache, Cussoch, Coussack, M'Cusack, Cussick and many more.
Early Notables of the Cooussack family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family up to this time was Thomas Cusack was Mayor of Dublin in 1409; and Sir Thomas Cusack, who fought as a lancer at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415.
Sir Thomas Cusack (1490-1571) was Lord Chancellor of Ireland. He was "of an ancient family in Meath, was Sheriff of...
Another 52 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cooussack Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Cooussack family
In the mid-19th century, Ireland experienced one of the worst periods in its entire history. During this decade in order to ease the pressure of the soil, which was actually depleted by the effects of the previous years' grain crops, landowners forced tenant farmers and peasants onto tiny plots of land that barely provided the basic sustenance a family required. Conditions were worsened, though, by the population of the country, which was growing fast to roughly eight million. So when the Great Potato Famine of the mid-1840s hit, starvation and diseases decimated the population. Thousands of Irish families left the country for British North America and the United States. The new immigrants were often accommodated either in the opening western frontiers or as cheap unskilled labor in the established centers. In early passenger and immigration lists there are many immigrants bearing the name Cooussack: Christopher Cusack who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1830; Betsey Cusack settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1849; Pat Cusack settled in Canada in 1839.
Related Stories +
- ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
- ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)