Many variations of the name MacBranan have evolved since the time of its initial creation. In Gaelic it appeared as "O Braondin," from the word "braon," which has several meanings, possibly meaning "sorrow" in this case.
Early Origins of the MacBranan family
The surname MacBranan was first found in County Kilkenny
(Irish: Cill Chainnigh), the former Kingdom of Osraige (Ossory), located in Southeastern Ireland
in the province of Leinster
, where the family claim descent from Braonan, an Irish Prince, brother of Ceallach, 17th King of Ossory
. Braonan later became the King of Ossory
, and also King of the Danes of Dublin
, and was known as the Prince of Idough. His son, Conglach, in a dispute over the throne of Ossory, was killed near Three Castles, County Kilkenny
. At this point in time the Brennans were in conflict with Brian Boru (1014), and most historians believe that the family was on the wrong side as allies of the Danish King. After Clontarf, they retained only the principality of Idough, but Anne, daughter of Guidhelgedh, three generations later, married the King of Ossory
(Donogh), and the title was still extant even after the Anglo Norman invasion
Early History of the MacBranan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacBranan research.Another 247 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1395, 1520, 1600, 1832, 1625, 1693, 1768, 1830 and 1794 are included under the topic Early MacBranan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacBranan Spelling Variations
The Middle Ages saw a great number of spelling variations
for surnames common to the Irish landscape. One reason for these variations is the fact that surnames were not rigidly fixed by this period. The following variations for the name MacBranan were encountered in the archives: Brennan, McBrennan, Brannon, Brannan, Brannen, Brannin, Brennyn, Brannyn, MacBrennan, Brenan, Branon, Branan, Branen and many more.
Early Notables of the MacBranan family (pre 1700)
Notable among the family name at this time was Sir Art O'Brennan of Castlecomer Castle; Most Rev. John Brennan (1625-1693), Bishop of Waterford
and Archbishop of Cashel; John Brennan (1768-1830)... Another 29 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacBranan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacBranan family to the New World and Oceana
In the 19th century, thousands of Irish left their English-occupied homeland for North America. Like most new world settlers, the Irish initially settled on the eastern shores of the continent but began to move westward with the promise of owning land. The height of this Irish migration came during the Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s. With apparently nothing to lose, Irish people left on ships bound for North America and Australia
. Unfortunately a great many of these passengers lost their lives - the only thing many had left - to disease, starvation, and accidents during the long and dangerous journey. Those who did safely arrive in "the land of opportunities" were often used for the hard labor of building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. The Irish were critical to the quick development of the infrastructure of the United States and Canada. Passenger and immigration lists indicate that members of the MacBranan family came to North America quite early: James Brennan, a bonded passenger, who arrived in Potomac in 1731;Timothy Branen who settled in Placentia, Newfoundland, in 1744; Laurence Brennan, on record as a laborer in St. John's Newfoundland in 1779.