Origins Available: Irish
The original Gaelic form of Gillent was O Giollain, from the word "giolla," which means "lad."
Early Origins of the Gillent family
The surname Gillent 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 Gillent family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gillent research.Another 171 words (12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gillent History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gillent Spelling Variations
The archives that survive today demonstrate the difficulty experienced by the scribes of the Middle Ages in their attempts to record these names in writing. Spelling variations
of the name Gillent dating from that time include Gillan, Gillinan, Gillen, Gillon, Gillfinan, Gillion and many more.
Early Notables of the Gillent family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Gillent Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Gillent family to the New World and Oceana
In the 18th and 19th centuries, thousands of Irish families
fled an Ireland
that was forcibly held through by England
through its imperialistic policies. A large portion of these families crossed the Atlantic to the shores of North America. The fate of these families depended on when they immigrated and the political allegiances they showed after they arrived. Settlers that arrived before the American War of Independence
may have moved north to Canada at the war's conclusion as United Empire Loyalists. Such Loyalists were granted land along the St. Lawrence River and the Niagara Peninsula. Those that fought for the revolution occasionally gained the land that the fleeing Loyalist vacated. After this period, free land and an agrarian lifestyle were not so easy to come by in the East. So when seemingly innumerable Irish immigrants arrived during the Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s, free land for all was out of the question. These settlers were instead put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. Whenever they came, Irish settlers made an inestimable contribution to the building of the New World. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the Irish name Gillent or a variant listed above, including: 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.