Donlon Surname History

Many variations of the name Donlon have evolved since the time of its initial creation. In Gaelic it appeared as O Domhnallain, derived from the personal name of Domhallan, Lord of Clan Breasail, from whom the sept claims descent.

Early Origins of the Donlon family

The surname Donlon was first found in Galway (Irish: Gaillimh) part of the province of Connacht, located on the west coast of the Island, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Early History of the Donlon family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Donlon research. Another 70 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1609, 1649, 1705, 1616, 1640, 1588, 1665 and 1660 are included under the topic Early Donlon History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Donlon Spelling Variations

People who were accounted for by scribes and church officials often had their name recorded many different ways because pronunciation was the only guide those scribes and church officials had to go by. This resulted in the problem of one person's name being recorded under several different variations, creating the illusion of more than one person. Among the many spelling variations of the surname Donlon that are preserved in archival documents are Donellan, Donnellan, Donnelan, Donelan, Donnellin, Donellin and many more.

Early Notables of the Donlon family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family at this time was Reverend Nehemiah Donellan (d. 1609), Archbishop of Tuam, who translated the New Testament into Irish. His name is written in Irish Fearganinm O'Domhnallain, and he was born in the county of Galway, and is said to have been a son of Melaghlin O'Donellan...
Another 51 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Donlon Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Donlon migration to the United States +

A great mass of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century, seeking relief from various forms of social, religious, and economic discrimination. This Irish exodus was primarily to North America. If the migrants survived the long ocean journey, many unfortunately would find more discrimination in the colonies of British North America and the fledgling United States of America. These newly arrived Irish were, however, wanted as a cheap source of labor for the many large agricultural and industrial projects that were essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the western world. Early immigration and passenger lists indicate many people bearing the Donlon name:

Donlon Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Stephen Donlon, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1840 [1]
  • Edward Donlon, who arrived in Mississippi in 1843 [1]
  • Patrick Donlon, aged 28, who landed in New York, NY in 1847 [1]
  • Catherine Donlon, aged 55, who landed in New York, NY in 1848 [1]

Contemporary Notables of the name Donlon (post 1700) +

  • Peter Dwight Donlon (1906-1979), American gold medalist rower at the 1928 Summer Olympics
  • Dolores Donlon (b. 1926), American model and actress
  • Billy Donlon (b. 1977), American college basketball coach
  • Marguerite Donlon (b. 1966), Irish dancer, choreographer and ballet director
  • Denise Anne Donlon CM (b. 1956), Canadian executive, television producer, television host, and programme director, inducted into the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' Hall Of Fame (2004)
  • Roger Hugh Charles Donlon (b. 1934), retired United States Army officer who was the first man to receive the Medal of Honor in Vietnam
  • Christopher Donlon, Australian rules football field umpire in the Australian Football League (AFL)

The Donlon 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: Omni violentia major
Motto Translation: Too strong for any violence.

  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8) on Facebook
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