All Irish surnames have a unique and often romantic meaning. The name MacDay originally appeared in Gaelic as O Deaghaidh or O Diaghaidh.
Early Origins of the MacDay family
The surname MacDay was first found in County Clare
(Irish: An Clár) located on the west coast of Ireland
in the province of Munster
, where O'Dea was chief of Dysart-O'Dea, now the parish of Dysart, barony of Inchiquin, one of the original chiefs and clans of ancient Thomond
. Today Dysert O'Dea Castle still stands near Corofin, County Clare
with its Romanesque Doorway and High Cross and was the site of the Battle of Dysert O'Dea in 1318. It was here that the Irish chieftain
Conor O'Dea, chief of the Cineal Fearmaic and ally of Murtough O'Brien, stood his ground only to be defeated by the invading forces from Scotland.
Early History of the MacDay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacDay research.Another 273 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1318 and 1434 are included under the topic Early MacDay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacDay Spelling Variations
Individual scribes in the Ireland
during the Middle Ages would often record a person's name various ways. How the name was recorded depended on what that particular scribe believed the proper spelling for the name pronounced to him was. Spelling variations
revealed in the search for the origin of the MacDay family name include Day, Dea, O'Dea and others.
Early Notables of the MacDay family (pre 1700)
Notable among the family name at this time was Most Rev. Thomas O'Dea; and Cornelius O'Dea (d. 1434), Archdeacon of Killaloe and later Bishop of Limerick
. Three items of his have survived over the centuries: his Mitre, Crozier and a manuscript now entitled "The Black Book of Limerick." Today, they are... Another 98 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacDay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacDay family to the New World and Oceana
The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish migrating out of their homeland in a great measure due to the oppressive imperial policies of the English government and landowners. Many of these Irish families
sailed to North America aboard overcrowded passenger ships. By far, the largest influx of Irish immigrants to North America occurred with Great Potato Famine
during the late 1840s. These particular immigrants were instrumental in creation of the United States and Canada as major industrial nations because the many essential elements such as the roadways, canals, bridges, and railways required an enormous quantity of cheap labor, which these poor immigrants provided. Later generations of Irish in these countries also went on to make valuable contributions in such fields as the arts, commerce, politics, and education. Extensive research into immigration and passenger lists has revealed many early immigrants bearing the name MacDay: Stephen Day who became a prominent merchant in Virginia soon after arriving in 1638. Another Stephen Daye (1594-1668), was the first printer in New England
, and produced the first book printed in the English colonies. Cambridge Massachusetts granted his three hundred
acres of land for ".