Show ContentsDunleavy History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Irish surname Dunleavy originally appeared in Gaelic as Mac Duinnshleibh, derived from the words "dun," meaning "fortress," or perhaps "donn," which means "brown," and "sliabh," which means "mountain."

Early Origins of the Dunleavy family

The surname Dunleavy was first found in Ulidia, in northern Ireland, where they were said to have descended from the Princes of Ulidia, who were in turn descended from the Heremon line of Irish Kings; the modern name for Ulidia, is Ulster. The "Four Masters" list that in 1199, a Rory O'Dunsleve joined the English (Norman soldiers) at Meath and plundered the monastery of Saint Peter and Paul in Armagh. In the 12th century during the Anglo/Norman invasion of Ireland, the Dunleavys migrated to Tir Connell now known as Donegal and became hereditary physicians to the distinguished O'Donnells.

Early History of the Dunleavy family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunleavy research. Another 74 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1644, 1694, 1761, 1694, 1728 and 1746 are included under the topic Early Dunleavy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dunleavy Spelling Variations

Those scribes in Ireland during the Middle Ages recorded names as they sounded. Consequently, in this era many people were recorded under different spellings each time their name was written down. Research on the Dunleavy family name revealed numerous spelling variations, including Dunleavy, Dunlevie, Dunlevy, Dunlivie, McDunleavy, Donleavy and many more.

Early Notables of the Dunleavy family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name at this time was Father Christopher Dunlevy, a Franciscan monk, who was martyred in 1644. Reverend Andrew Donlevy (1694- c.1761), was an Irish ecclesiastic, born about 1694, and received his early education in or...
Another 38 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dunleavy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dunleavy Ranking

In the United States, the name Dunleavy is the 8,576th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1]

United States Dunleavy migration to the United States +

Thousands of Irish families left for North American shores in the 19th century. These people were searching for a life unencumbered with poverty, hunger, and racial discrimination. Many arrived to eventually find such conditions, but many others simply did not arrive: victims of the diseased, overcrowded ships in which they traveled to the New World. Those who lived to see North American shores were instrumental in the development of the growing nations of Canada and the United States. A thorough examination of passenger and immigration lists has disclosed evidence of many early immigrants of the name Dunleavy:

Dunleavy Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Mary Dunleavy, who arrived in America in 1841 [2]
  • Daniel Dunleavy who settled in Philadelphia in 1843
  • Owen Dunleavy, who settled in New York, NY in 1845
  • John Dunleavy, who settled in New York, NY in 1852

Australia Dunleavy migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Dunleavy Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Elizabeth Dunleavy, aged 21, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Dirigo" [3]

New Zealand Dunleavy migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Dunleavy Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. James Dunleavy, (b. 1958), aged 18, Scottish settler travelling from Glasgow aboard the ship "Pomona" arriving in Bluff, Southland, South Island, New Zealand on 14th April 1876 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Dunleavy (post 1700) +

  • John Francis Dunleavy (1879-1944), American Major League Baseball outfielder and pitcher who played from 1903 to 1905 for the St. Louis Cardinals
  • Mike J. Dunleavy (b. 1961), American politician, Member of the Alaska Senate (2013-)
  • Admiral Richard Michael Dunleavy (b. 1933), retired US naval officer
  • Michael "Mike" Dunleavy Jr. (b. 1980), American professional basketball player
  • Michael "Mike" Dunleavy Sr. (b. 1954), former American professional basketball player
  • Mary Dunleavy, American soprano
  • Thomas P. Dunleavy, American Republican politician, Candidate in primary for supervisor of Highland Township, Michigan, 2004 [5]
  • Richard Dunleavy, American politician, Member of Minnesota State House of Representatives 28th District, 1915-16 [5]
  • Martin J. Dunleavy, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Connecticut, 1996, 2004, 2008; Member of Democratic National Committee from Connecticut, 2004-08 [5]
  • James W. Dunleavy, American Republican politician, Candidate for Michigan State House of Representatives 60th District, 1976 [5]
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  2. 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)
  3. South Australian Register Thursday 23rd November 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Dirigo 1854. Retrieved
  4. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from
  5. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 28) . Retrieved from on Facebook