The Irish surnames in use today are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Donehan originally appeared in Gaelic as O Donnagain. The first portion of the name is probably derived from "donn," which means "brown," while the second portion of the name is probably derived from and ancient Irish personal name
Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
Early Origins of the Donehan family
The surname Donehan was first found in County Cork
(Irish: Corcaigh) the ancient Kingdom of Deis Muin (Desmond), located on the southwest coast of Ireland
in the province of Munster
, where they held a family seat
at Muskerry, later moving to Limerick
Early History of the Donehan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Donehan research.Another 226 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1300, 1395, 1412, 1413, 1634 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Donehan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Donehan Spelling Variations
Individual scribes in the Ireland
during the Middle Ages would often record a person's name various ways. How the name was recorded depended on what that particular scribe believed the proper spelling for the name pronounced to him was. Spelling variations
revealed in the search for the origin of the Donehan family name include Donegan, Donnegan, Doneghan, Donneghan, Donagan, Donnagan, Donnaghan, Dunnegan, O'Donegan, O'Dunnegan, O'Donnaghan, Dongan, Donegin, Donnegin, Donnagen, Donagen, Donnegen, Donegen, Donnigan, Donigan, Dunnican, Dunican, Dunnigan, McDunnigan, McDonegan, Dongane, Dongin, Dongen and many more.
Early Notables of the Donehan family (pre 1700)
Notable among the family name at this time was John Donegan (died 1413), a medieval Manx prelate. After holding the position of Archdeacon of Down, he held three successive bishoprics, Mann and the Isles (Sodor), then... Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Donehan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Donehan family to the New World and Oceana
began to immigrate to British North America and the United States in the 18th century, but the greatest influx of Irish immigrants came during the Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s. The earlier settlers came to North America after a great deal of consideration and by paying relatively high fees for their passage. These settlers were primarily drawn by the promise of land. Those later settlers that came during the 1840's were trying to escape the conditions of poverty, starvation, disease, and death that had stricken Ireland
. Due to the enormity of their numbers and the late date of their arrival, these immigrants primarily became hired laborers instead of homesteading settlers like their predecessors. An exhaustive search of immigration and passenger lists has revealed many Irish immigrants North America bearing the name Donehan: Thomas Donegan, the Earl of Limerick
, who became Governor of New York from 1683 to 1691. Patrick Donegan settled in Maryland in 1742; Andrew, Charles, Christopher, John, Mathew, Patrick, Phillip, Thomas Donegan, all arrived in Pennsylvania between 1839 and 1878.