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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

Origins Available: English, Irish

Where did the Irish Craven family come from? When did the Craven family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Craven family history?

The surname Craven comes from either O Crabhain, which was prominent in County Galway, or Mac Crabhain which was located in the Monaghan and Louth area. The more anglicized form Craven, can also be an English toponymic though it is rarely of this origin in Ireland.


Spelling variations of this family name include: Cravane, Creavan, Craven, Cravan and others.

First found in County Galway (Irish: Gaillimh) part of the province of Connacht, located on the west coast of the Island. It was also found to be in Counties Monaghan and Louth.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Craven research. More information is included under the topic Early Craven History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Craven Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Craven Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Richard Craven who settled in Virginia in the year 1626 and received 150 acres by patent
  • Tho Craven, who landed in Virginia in 1642
  • Susan Craven, who arrived in Virginia in 1655
  • Susan Craven who settled in the same Colony in the year 1655
  • Thomas Craven, aged 17, who settled in America in the year 1655

Craven Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • John Craven, who arrived in Mississippi in 1798

Craven Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Jno Craven, aged 25, landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Jn Craven, aged 25, arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1805
  • William P Craven, aged 26, arrived in Tennessee in 1812
  • Richard Craven, who landed in New York in 1831
  • James Craven, who arrived in New York in 1843

Craven Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Bridget Craven, who settled in St. John, New Brunswick in 1834
  • Bridget Craven, aged 17, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1834 aboard the brig "Breeze" from Dublin

Craven Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • James Craven, a slater, arrived in Van Diemenís Land (now Tasmania) sometime between 1825 and 1832

Craven Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Thomas Craven landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Thomas Craven, aged 30, a farm labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Bolton" in 1840
  • John Craven, aged 30, a joiner, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arethusa" in 1879
  • Alice Craven, aged 29, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arethusa" in 1879
  • Sarah Craven, aged 8, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arethusa" in 1879


  • Wesley Earl "Wes" Craven (1939-2015), American multiple award winning horror movie director and screenwriter, best known for A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987), New Nightmare (1994) and A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
  • Margaret Craven (1901-1980), American author
  • Richard Allen "Ricky" Craven (b. 1966), ESPN broadcaster and former NASCAR driver who won in four different series
  • Braxton Craven (1822-1882), American educator, 1st president of Duke University (1849-1882)
  • Avery Odelle Craven (1886-1980), prominent American historian
  • Mr. Douglas Craven (d. 1941), British Leading Seaman, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died during the sinking
  • Brigadier John Craven (b. 1894), Australian Commanding Officer of the 2nd Lines of Communications Sub-Area from 1942 to 1945
  • Matt Craven (b. 1956), Canadian television and film actor
  • Sir Robert Craven (1916-1972), English RAF Air Marshall
  • Sir Philip Craven MBE (b. 1950), British sports official and second President of the International Paralympic Committee



  • History of the Beard, Bedichek, Craven and Allied Families by Pauline Beard Cooney.


  1. Woodham-Smith, Cecil. The Great Hunger Ireland 1845-1849. New York: Old Town Books, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-385-3).
  2. Harris, Ruth-Ann and B. Emer O'Keefe. The Search for Missing Friends Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in the Boston Pilot Volume II 1851-1853. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1991. Print.
  3. Tepper, Michael Ed & Elizabeth P. Bentley Transcriber. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800-1819. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1986. Print.
  4. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  5. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  6. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1992. Print.
  7. MacLysaght, Edward. Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7).
  8. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
  9. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  10. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  11. ...

This page was last modified on 3 May 2015 at 23:47.

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