Origins Available: Irish
The original Gaelic form of Gilant was O Giollain, from the word "giolla," which means "lad."
Early Origins of the Gilant family
The surname Gilant was first found in County Donegal
(Irish: Dún na nGall), northwest Ireland
in the province of Ulster
, sometimes referred to as County Tyrconnel, where they held a family seat
from ancient times.
Early History of the Gilant family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gilant research.Another 171 words (12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gilant History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gilant Spelling Variations
Names during the Middle Ages were often recorded under several different spelling variations
during the life of their bearers. Literacy was rare at that time and so how a person's name was recorded was decided by the individual scribe. Variations of the name Gilant include Gillan, Gillinan, Gillen, Gillon, Gillfinan, Gillion and many more.
Early Notables of the Gilant family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Gilant Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Gilant family to the New World and Oceana
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 Gilant were found through extensive research of immigration and passenger lists: Hugh and Jane Gillan who settled in New York State in 1823; James Gillan settled in New York in 1803; John, Patrick, Thomas and William Gillan settled in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860.