Feeney History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Feeney originally appeared in Gaelic as O Fiannaidhe. This name, which was O Feinneadha in its earlier form, refers to a soldier.

Early Origins of the Feeney family

The surname Feeney 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 very ancient times, and where their territories were Ballyfeeney and in Roscommon. Moving north into Ulster the name became Finney. This branch also moved into southwest Scotland from about the 15th century.

Early History of the Feeney family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Feeney research. Another 98 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1509, 1541, 1551, 1640, and 1678 are included under the topic Early Feeney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Feeney Spelling Variations

Names written in official documents were generally spelt as they sounded, leading to the problem of one name being recorded under several different variations, creating the illusion in records of more than one person. Among the many spelling variations of the surname Feeney that are preserved in documents of the family history are Finney, Feeney, Finnay, Finny, Fynnie, Fynney, Feenay, Feeny, Feaney, Feanay, Feany and many more.

Early Notables of the Feeney family (pre 1700)

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


United States Feeney migration to the United States +

Many destitute Irish families in the 18th and 19th centuries decided to leave their homeland, which had in many ways been scarred by English colonial rule. One of the most frequent destinations for these families was North America where it was possible for an Irish family to own their own parcel of land. Many of the early settlers did find land awaiting them in British North America, or even later in America, but for the majority of immigrants that arrived as a result of the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s the ownership of land was often a long way off. These Irish people were initially put to work on such industrial projects as the building of bridges, canals, and railroads, or they worked at manufacturing positions within factories. Whenever they arrived, the Irish made enormous contributions to the infant nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the earliest immigrants to bearer the name of Feeney were found through extensive research of immigration and passenger lists:

Feeney Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Dennis Feeney, aged 30, who landed in New York in 1812 [1]
  • Martin Feeney, who landed in New York, NY in 1816 [1]
  • William Feeney, who arrived in America in 1828 [1]
  • J Feeney, who landed in San Francisco, Cai in 1851 [1]
  • Thomas Feeney, aged 20, who arrived in New York in 1854 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Feeney migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Feeney Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Michael Feeney, aged 27, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Trafalgar" from Galway, Ireland
  • Patrick Feeney, aged 13, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Trafalgar" from Galway, Ireland
  • Martin Feeney, aged 10, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Trafalgar" from Galway, Ireland
  • Ann Feeney, aged 20, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1838 aboard the schooner "Susan Jane" from Ballyshannon, Ireland
  • Mrs. Mary Feeney, aged 27 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "John Munn" departing from the port of Liverpool, England but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Feeney migration to Australia +

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

Feeney Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. James Feeney, (b. 1813), aged 26, Irish labourer who was convicted in County Westmeath, Ireland for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Blenheim" on 19th May 1839, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [3]

New Zealand Feeney 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:

Feeney Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Patrick Feeney, British settler as part of the 8th Detachment of the Royal New Zealand Fencibles travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Oriental Queen" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th September 1849 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Feeney (post 1700) +

  • Carol Feeney (b. 1964), American Olympic rower who competed at the 1992 Summer Olympics
  • Joe Feeney (1931-2008), American tenor, best known for his work on The Lawrence Welk Show
  • Thomas Charles "Tom" Feeney III (b. 1958), American politician
  • Charles F. Feeney (b. 1931), Irish-American businessman and philanthropist
  • Mark Feeney, American Pulitzer Prize-winning (2008) arts critic for The Boston Globe
  • Irene M. Feeney, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1984 [5]
  • Hugh F. Feeney, American Democrat politician, Postmaster at Wheeling, Virginia, 1857-61 [5]
  • Francis E. Feeney, American Democrat politician, Postmaster at Minersville, Pennsylvania, 1940-70 [5]
  • Diane L. Feeney, American Libertarian politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Indiana 9th District, 1996, 1998 [5]
  • Albert G. Feeney (1892-1950), American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Indiana, 1948; Mayor of Indianapolis, Indiana, 1948-50 [5]
  • ... (Another 22 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Flight TWA 800
  • Mrs. Kathleen Veronica Feeney (1943-1996), aged 53, from New Hyde Park, New York, USA, American passenger flying aboard flight TWA 800 from J.F.K. Airport, New York to Leonardo da Vinci Airport, Rome when the plane crashed after takeoff ; she died in the crash [6]
  • Miss. Deirdre Mairead Feeney (1979-1996), aged 17, from New Hyde Park, New York, USA, American passenger flying aboard flight TWA 800 from J.F.K. Airport, New York to Leonardo da Vinci Airport, Rome when the plane crashed after takeoff ; she died in the crash [6]


  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)
  2. ^ 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. 28)
  3. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 15th October 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/blenheim
  4. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  5. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 20) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  6. ^ The Washington Post Passenger List TWA Flight 800. (Retrieved 2018, February 15th). Retrieved from https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/twa800/list01.htm


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