Kennigan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Dalriada, in ancient Scotland, is where the name Kennigan evolved. It was a name for someone who lived at Cunningham in Ayrshire. However, numerous branches of the Cunningham family spread all over Scotland. Two of the most prominent branches of the Cunningham Clan, the Cunninghams of Corsehill and the Cunninghams of Caprington, trace their ancestry back to the medieval era.

Early Origins of the Kennigan family

The surname Kennigan was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire.

About the year 1050, it is said that Warnebald Cunningham saved King Malcolm Canmore by hiding him in the barn and covering him with hay concealing him from his pursuer the Pretender King, MacBeth. The grateful King Malcolm later bestowed on Warnebald the lands of Cunningham and the motto "Over Fork Over." [1]

Early History of the Kennigan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kennigan research. Another 118 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1490, 1548, 1574, 1520, 1578, 1630, 1575, 1630, 1610, 1664, 1670, 1716 and are included under the topic Early Kennigan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Kennigan Spelling Variations

Medieval translation of Gaelic names could not be referred to as an accurate process. Spelling was not yet standardized, and names in documents from that era are riddled with spelling variations. Kennigan has been written as Cunningham, Cunninghame, Cunyngham, Cunnyngham, Cunnynghame, Cummingham and many more.

Early Notables of the Kennigan family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was Cuthbert Cunningham, 3rd Earl of Glencairn; William Cunningham, 4th Earl of Glencairn (c. 1490-1548), a Scottish nobleman; Alexander Cunningham, 5th Earl of Glencairn (died 1574), Scottish nobleman and Protestant reformer; William Cunningham, 6th Earl of Glencairn (ca. 1520-1578); James Cunningham, 7th Earl of...
Another 51 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kennigan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Kennigan family to Ireland

Some of the Kennigan family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


Australia Kennigan migration to Australia +

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

Kennigan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss. Honora Kennigan, (Kenagan, Kenora), (b. 1819), aged 30, Irish house maid who was convicted in Cork, Ireland for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Australasia" on 26th June 1849, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land), she died in 1873 [2]


  1. ^ Sims, Clifford Stanley The Origin and Signification of Scottish Surnames. 1862. Print.
  2. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 11th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/australasia


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