Dunnaven History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Many of the Irish surnames in use today have long rich histories behind them. The name Dunnaven originally appeared in Gaelic as O Donnabhain, derived from the words "donn," which means "brown," and "dubhan," a derivative of "dubh," which means "black."
Early Origins of the Dunnaven family
The surname Dunnaven was first found in County Limerick (Irish: Luimneach) located in Southwestern Ireland, in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times at Bruree. Their hereditary territory were the lands along the banks of the river Maigues in that county. They were descended from Crom, the Chief of the Donovans, who built Crom Castle, and he in turn was descended anciently from Eoghan Mor (Eugene the Great), King of Munster. Amhailgadh II's son, Crom's great, great grandfather, was a commander with King Brian Boru in the Battle of Clontarf against the Danes, and it was at this time through marriage that they lost the throne of Munster.
Important Dates for the Dunnaven family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunnaven research. Another 55 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1639, 1584, 1641, 1689, 1684, 1705 and 1689 are included under the topic Early Dunnaven History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Dunnaven Spelling Variations
Official documents, crafted by early scribes and church officials, primarily contained names that were spelled according to their pronunciation. This lead to the problem of one name being recorded under several different variations, creating an illusion that a single person was many people. Among the many spelling variations of the surname Dunnaven that are preserved in the archival documents of the time are Donovan, Donavon, Donavan, Donevan, Donnovan, Donnavon, Donnavan, Donnovin and many more.
Early Notables of the Dunnaven family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family name at this time was Donal II O'Donovan (Irish: Domhnall Ó Donnabháin), The O'Donovan of Clann Cathail, Lord of Clancahill (died 1639); Donal III O'Donovan (Irish: Domhnall Ó Donnabháin), The O'Donovan of Clancahill, (born before 1584), he joined the so-called Irish Rebellion of 1641 under Donagh MacCarthy and was accordingly stripped of his estates by...
Another 58 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dunnaven Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Dunnaven family
The 18th and 19th centuries saw many Irish families immigrate to North America in search of land and opportunities. The largest influx of Irish immigrants to the United States and British North America came during the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine laid waste to their homeland. Hundreds of thousands left the island in an attempt to escape the starvation and disease it brought. Although the arrival of such a large number of destitute Irish was not welcomed by the established population in the United States and what would become known as Canada at the time, these Irish were an essential element to the rapid development of these growing industrial nations. They filled the demand for the cheap labor needed for the work in factories and in the construction of bridges, roads, canals, and railways. An examination of passenger and immigration lists has revealed many immigrants bearing the name of Dunnaven or one of its variants: Daniell Donavan who settled in Barbados in 1680; Ann, Bat, Bridget, and Catharine Donavan all settled in Boston Massachusetts between 1847 and 1850; they also settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Maryland, and New York.