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When the Stongbow settlers arrived in Ireland, they quickly learned that the Irish had a pre-established system of hereditary surnames. The name Huniack is an occupational surname, which was primarily from the Anglo-Norman culture. There were a few Irish occupational names, however, previous to the arrival of the Strongbownians, so this Anglo-Norman tradition was not too incongruous within the island. Occupational surnames were derived from a word describing the actual job done by the initial name bearer. The Strongbownians frequently prefixed these names with the French word le, meaning the, but this custom quickly died out in Ireland. The surname Huniack came from a common occupational name for a valued military officer. The surname Huniack is derived from the expression Unicus Est. According to tradition, during the bitter 13th century feuds between the two powerful Anglo-Norman families of the Fitzgeralds and the Butlers, a Commander who sought help to secure a position pointed to a particularly valued captain and said Unicus Est, which means Hei is the only one to undertake this service. The name Garde was also used as a synonym.

Early Origins of the Huniack family


The surname Huniack 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 from ancient times, soon after the Anglo Norman Conquest of Ireland by Strongbow in 1172 A.D. That this family name were Norman mercenaries seems reasonably clear. In the bitter 13th century feuds between the Fitzgeralds and the Butlers it is said that a commander, seeking help to secure a position, pointed to one of the captains and said, 'Unicus Est', meaning 'He is the only one to undertake this service'. Hence this expression not only became the family motto but it also became the basis and origin of the family name itself, Uniacke. Later some used Gard as a synonym.

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Early History of the Huniack family

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Early History of the Huniack family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Huniack research.
Another 173 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 197 and 1976 are included under the topic Early Huniack History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Huniack Spelling Variations

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Huniack Spelling Variations


Church officials and medieval scribes spelled names as they sounded; therefore, single person, could have his name spelt many different ways during their lifetime. While investigating the origins of the name Huniack, many spelling variations were encountered, including: Uniacke, Uniake, Uniack, Uniak, Garde, Gard and others.

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Early Notables of the Huniack family (pre 1700)

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Early Notables of the Huniack family (pre 1700)


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

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Migration of the Huniack family to the New World and Oceana

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Migration of the Huniack family to the New World and Oceana


In the 1840s, Ireland experienced a mass exodus to North America due to the Great Potato Famine. These families wanted to escape from hunger and disease that was ravaging their homeland. With the promise of work, freedom and land overseas, the Irish looked upon British North America and the United States as a means of hope and prosperity. Those that survived the journey were able to achieve this through much hard work and perseverance. Early immigration and passenger lists revealed many bearing the name Huniack: Edward Uniacke arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1852.

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Huniack Family Crest Products

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Huniack Family Crest Products



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