Kinnell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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All Irish surnames have a long, ancient Gaelic history behind them. The original Gaelic form of the name Kinnell is O Cinnfhaolaidh, which is derived from "ceann," which means "head," and "faol," which means "wolf."
Early Origins of the Kinnell family
The surname Kinnell was first found in Limerick (Irish: Luimneach) located in Southwestern Ireland, in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat as chiefs in the barony of Connello, from olden times up to the 12th century when they were dispersed by the Anglo Norman invasion by Strongbow, the Earl of Pembroke in 1172.
Early History of the Kinnell family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kinnell research. Another 111 words (8 lines of text) covering the year 1800 is included under the topic Early Kinnell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kinnell Spelling Variations
Scribes and church officials, lacking today's standardized spelling rules, recorded names by how they were pronounced. This imprecise guide often led to the misleading result of one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname Kinnell are preserved in documents of the family history. The various spellings of the name that were found include Kinneally, Kinealy, Kinnelly, Kinnelley, Kinneley, Kinelly, Kinelley, Kenealy, O'Kinnealy, O'Kinnelly, O'Kinelly, O'Kinneley, O'Kennelly, O'Kenelly, Kennelly, Kenelly, Kennealy, Keneally, O'Kennealy, O'Kenneally, Quinelly, O'Quinelly, O'Quinelley, Kenneallagh, Keneallagh, Kenealagh, O'Kenealagh, O'Kenealagh, Kinneary, Kineary, O'Kinneary and many more.
Early Notables of the Kinnell family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Kinnell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Kinnell family
A massive wave of Irish immigrants hit North America during the 19th century. Although many early Irish immigrants made a carefully planned decision to leave left Ireland for the promise of free land, by the 1840s immigrants were fleeing a famine stricken land in desperation. The condition of Ireland during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s can be attributed to a rapidly expanding population and English imperial policies. Those Irish families that arrived in North America were essential to its rapid social, industrial, and economic development. Passenger and immigration lists have revealed a number of early Irish immigrants bearing the name Kinnell: Michael Kinneary arrived in Philadelphia in 1873; John Kennelly arrived in Virginia 1774; John Kennelly arrived in Quebec in 1825 and later moved to Lindsay, Ontario. Patrick and Mary Kennelly arrived in Boston Mass in 1849.
Contemporary Notables of the name Kinnell (post 1700) +
- Murray Kinnell (1889-1954), English-born American actor who appeared in 71 films from 1930 to 1937
- Galway Kinnell (1927-2014), American poet awarded the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry
- Joseph Kinnell, American politician, Village President of Delray, Michigan, 1901-03 
- David Kinnell (1879-1951), Scottish professional golfer who had two top-10 finishes in the Open Championship, brother of James Kinnell
- Gordon Jack Kinnell (b. 1891), British prelate, Provost of St Andrew's Cathedral, Aberdeen (1932-1955)
- George Kinnell (b. 1937), former Scottish footballer who played from 1959 to 1969
- James Kinnell (1876-1918), Scottish professional golfer; he was killed in action in France on 22 April 1918 during World War I
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