Show ContentsDunnigan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Irish surnames in use today are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Dunnigan 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. [1]

Early Origins of the Dunnigan family

The surname Dunnigan 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, Kildare and Dublin.

Early History of the Dunnigan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunnigan research. Another 114 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1300, 1395, 1412, 1413, 1634 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Dunnigan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dunnigan Spelling Variations

The search for the origins of the name Dunnigan family name revealed numerous spelling variations. These variants can be somewhat accounted for when it is realized that before widespread literacy people only recognized their name by pronunciation; it was up to scribes to decide how it was to be formally recorded. Variations found 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 Dunnigan 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 Dunnigan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dunnigan Ranking

In the United States, the name Dunnigan is the 10,638th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [2]

United States Dunnigan migration to the United States +

Ireland saw an enormous decrease in its population in the 19th century due to immigration and death. This pattern of immigration began slowly in the late 18th century and gradually grew throughout the early portion of the 19th century. However, a dramatic increase in the country's immigration numbers occurred when the Great Potato Famine struck in the 1840s. The early immigrants to North America were primarily destined to be farmers tending to their own plot of land, those that came later initially settled within pre-established urban centers. These urban immigrants provided the cheap labor that the fast developing United States and soon to be Canada required. Regardless of their new lifestyle in North America, the Irish immigrants to the United States and Canada made invaluable contributions to their newly adopted societies. An investigation of immigrant and passenger lists revealed many Dunnigans:

Dunnigan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Hugh Dunnigan, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • M Dunnigan, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]

Canada Dunnigan migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dunnigan Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Miss. Mary Dunnigan, aged 3 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Marchioness of Breadalbane" departing 11th June 1847 from Sligo, Ireland; the ship arrived on 12th August 1847 but she died on board [4]

Australia Dunnigan migration to Australia +

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

Dunnigan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss Mary Dunnigan, (Dinagin) who was convicted in Glasgow, Scotland for 7 years , transported aboard the "Aurora" on 22nd April 1851, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Dunnigan (post 1700) +

  • Alice Allison Dunnigan (1906-1983), American journalist, civil rights activist and author
  • John J. Dunnigan (1883-1965), American architect, builder and politician
  • Merton Arthur "Pat" Dunnigan (1894-1937), All-American and professional football player
  • Kyle Dunnigan, American comedian
  • Ann Dunnigan, American translator of 19th-century Russian literature, as well as a teacher and an actor
  • James F. Dunnigan (b. 1943), American author, military-political analyst, Defense and State Department consultant, and wargame designer

  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 74)
  5. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 20th August 2020). Retrieved from on Facebook