Driskell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Before Irish names were translated into English, Driskell had a Gaelic form of O hEidersceoil, from the word eidirsceol, which means an intermediary.

Early Origins of the Driskell family

The surname Driskell was first found in the southern part of the county of Kerry. They were later forced out of this territory by the O'Sullivans, and migrated eastward, settling around Baltimore in the southwest of County Cork. They remain almost exclusively in this region today, despite the depredations of the neighboring O'Donovan and O'Mahony septs. [1]

"The original habitat of the O'Driscolls was the Barony of West Carbery, in County Cork, where O'Driscoll was Lord of Baltimore, and possessed the Island of Cape Clear and adjacent territory. The great majority of the present Driscolls are to be found there." [2]

The sept takes its name from Eidersceoil, who was born around 910 AD, and was in turn descended from Lughaide Laidhe, who was the ancestor of the Corca Laoidheclann which occupied the area of Cork belonging to the diocese of Ross. The variant Dirsicall was ten times more common than O'Driscoll eighty years ago, the situation has now been reversed.

Early History of the Driskell family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Driskell research. Another 216 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1698, 1460 and 1707 are included under the topic Early Driskell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Driskell Spelling Variations

Lacking standardized spellings, scribes and church officials recorded people's name according to how they sounded. This practice often led to the misleading result of one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname Driskell are preserved in the archival documents of the period. The various spellings of the name that were found include Driscoll, O'Driscoll and others.

Early Notables of the Driskell family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Driskell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Driskell Ranking

In the United States, the name Driskell is the 6,185th most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [3]

United States Driskell migration to the United States +

Irish immigrants began to leave the English-controlled Ireland in sizable numbers during the late 18th century. Many of these Irish immigrated to British North America or the United States in the hopes of gaining their own tract of farmland. This pattern of migration grew steadily until the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine caused a great exodus of immigrants to North America. These immigrants differed from their predecessors in that they were desperately fleeing the disease and starvation that plagued their homeland, and many were entirely destitute when they arrived in North America. Although these penniless immigrants were not warmly welcomed when they arrived, they were critical to the rapid development of the United States and what would become known as Canada. Many went to populate the western frontiers and others provided the cheap labor the new manufacturing sector and the building of bridges, roads, railways, and canals required. A thorough examination of immigration and passenger lists has revealed some of the earliest people to arrive in North America with name Driskell or one of its variants:

Driskell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Lawrence Driskell, who arrived in New Orleans, La in 1848 [4]
Driskell Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Bridget Driskell, aged 19, who landed in America from Dungarvan, in 1901
  • Jessie Driskell, aged 27, who immigrated to America, in 1914
  • Oscar Sheridan Driskell, aged 20, who landed in America, in 1921

Contemporary Notables of the name Driskell (post 1700) +

  • Gretchen Driskell, American accountant, real estate agent and politician, first female Mayor of Saline, Michigan (1999-2012), member of the Michigan House of Representatives
  • David C. Driskell (b. 1931), American scholar in the field of African American art and an artist
  • James Patrick Driskell (b. 1959), Canadian who was wrongfully convicted for the murder of Perry Harder in 1991, he served 12 years in prison and was the subject of an public inquiry

  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  2. ^ Matheson, Robert E., Special Report on Surnames in Ireland with Notes as to Numeric Strength, Derivation, Ethnology, and Distribution. Dublin: Alexander Thom & Co., 1894. Print
  3. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  4. ^ 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)

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