Gaynor History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Irish names tend to vary widely in their spelling and overall form. The original Gaelic form of the name Gaynor is "Mag Fhionnbhairr," which is derived from the word "fionnbharr," which means "fair head."

Early Origins of the Gaynor family

The surname Gaynor was first found in county Longford (Irish: An Longfort) traditionally known as Annaly or Teffia, and situated in the Irish Midlands, in Northwest Leinster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.

Early History of the Gaynor family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gaynor research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the year 1172 is included under the topic Early Gaynor History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gaynor Spelling Variations

The recording of names in Ireland during the Middle Ages was an inconsistent endeavor at best. Since the general population did not know how to read or write, they could only specify how their names should be recorded orally. Research into the name Gaynor revealed spelling variations, including Gaynor, Gainor, Gainer, Gaines, Gains, McGaynor and others.

Early Notables of the Gaynor family (pre 1700)

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


United States Gaynor migration to the United States +

A great mass of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century, seeking relief from various forms of social, religious, and economic discrimination. This Irish exodus was primarily to North America. If the migrants survived the long ocean journey, many unfortunately would find more discrimination in the colonies of British North America and the fledgling United States of America. These newly arrived Irish were, however, wanted as a cheap source of labor for the many large agricultural and industrial projects that were essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the western world. Early immigration and passenger lists indicate many people bearing the Gaynor name:

Gaynor Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Gaynor, who landed in New York in 1801 [1]
  • Michael Gaynor, who landed in Tippecanoe County, Ind in 1840 [1]
  • Capt. Gaynor, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [1]
  • Austin, Edward, James, John, Luke, Patrick, and Peter Gaynor, all, who arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860
  • James S Gaynor, who arrived in Mississippi in 1868 [1]

Canada Gaynor migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Gaynor Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. James Gaynor U.E. who settled in Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1784 he died in 1823 [2]
  • Mr. Peter Gaynor U.E. who settled in Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1784 [2]
Gaynor Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Catherine Gaynor, aged 20, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the ship "Edwin" from Dublin, Ireland
  • Mrs. Margaret Gaynor, aged 50 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Marinus" departing from the port of Dublin, Ireland but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [3]
  • Mr. Edward Gaynor, aged 1 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Lord Ashburton" departing 13th September 1847 from Liverpool, England; the ship arrived on 1st November 1847 but he died on board [4]
  • Ms. Mary Gaynor, aged 24 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Jessie" departing 3rd June 1847 from Cork, Ireland; the ship arrived on 24th July 1847 but she died on board [4]
  • Edward Walter Gaynor, who landed in Canada in 1888

Australia Gaynor migration to Australia +

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

Gaynor Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Edward Gaynor, English convict from Kent, who was transported aboard the "Ann" on August 1809, settling in New South Wales, Australia [5]
  • H. Gaynor, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Calphurnia" in 1849 [6]
  • William Gaynor, aged 23, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Omega" [7]
  • Robert Gaynor, aged 46, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Omega" [7]

New Zealand Gaynor 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:

Gaynor Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Terence Gaynor, aged 19, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Queen of Nations" in 1874

Contemporary Notables of the name Gaynor (post 1700) +

  • John Bernard "J.B." Gaynor (b. 1990), American former teen actor, best known for his role as Young Eddie in Grounded for Life
  • Gloria Gaynor (b. 1949), born Gloria Fowles, American singer, best known for the disco era hits "I Will Survive" and "Never Can Say Goodbye"
  • Adam Gaynor (b. 1963), American rhythm guitarist, best-known as the former rhythm guitarist for the band Matchbox Twenty
  • Mitzi Gaynor (b. 1931), born Francesca Marlene de Czanyi von Gerber, an American Laurel and Emmy Award winning actress, singer, and dancer perhaps best known for her role in Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific
  • Janet Gaynor (1906-1984), American silent film actress who became the first winner of the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performances in three films, the only occasion on which an actress has won for multiple roles
  • William Jay Gaynor (1849-1913), American mayor of the City of New York from 1910 to 1913, as well as a New York Supreme Court Justice from 1893 to 1909
  • Francis Robert Gaynor (1852-1920), American Republican politician, District judge in Iowa 4th District, 1891-1912; Justice of Iowa State Supreme Court, 1913-20 [8]
  • Edward M. Gaynor, American Republican politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Illinois 5th District, 1950 [8]
  • Donald Gaynor, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 2000 [8]
  • Dan Gaynor, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Iowa, 1956 [8]
  • ... (Another 14 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


  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. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  3. ^ 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. 30)
  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. 77)
  5. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Ann voyage to New South Wales, Australia in 1809 with 200 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/ann/1809
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The CALPHURNIA 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Calpurnia.htm
  7. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) OMEGA 1852. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/omega1852.shtml
  8. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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