The Irish surname MacDonlevy originally appeared in Gaelic as Mac Duinnshleibh, derived from the words "dun," meaning "fortress," or perhaps "donn," which means "brown," and "sliabh," which means "mountain."
Early Origins of the MacDonlevy family
The surname MacDonlevy was first found in Ulidia
, in northern Ireland
, where they were said to have descended from the Princes of Ulidia, who were in turn descended from the Heremon
line of Irish Kings; the modern name for Ulidia, is Ulster
. The "Four Masters" list that in 1199, a Rory O'Dunsleve joined the English (Norman soldiers) at Meath and plundered the monastery of Saint Peter and Paul in Armagh. In the 12th century during the Anglo/ Norman invasion
of Ireland, the Dunleavys migrated to Tir Connell now known as Donegal
and became hereditary physicians to the distinguished O'Donnells.
Early History of the MacDonlevy family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacDonlevy research.Another 147 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1644, 1694, 1761, 1728 and 1746 are included under the topic Early MacDonlevy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacDonlevy Spelling Variations
Those scribes in Ireland
during the Middle Ages recorded names as they sounded. Consequently, in this era many people were recorded under different spellings each time their name was written down. Research on the MacDonlevy family name revealed numerous spelling variations
, including Dunleavy, Dunlevie, Dunlevy, Dunlivie, McDunleavy, Donleavy and many more.
Early Notables of the MacDonlevy family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family name at this time was Father Christopher Dunlevy, a Franciscan monk, who was martyred in 1644; and Reverend Andrew Donlevy (1694- c.1761), the Superior... Another 28 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacDonlevy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacDonlevy family to the New World and Oceana
During the 19th century thousands of impoverished Irish families
made the long journey to British North America and the United States. These people were leaving a land that had become beset with poverty, lack of opportunity, and hunger. In North America, they hoped to find land, work, and political and religious freedoms. Although the majority of the immigrants that survived the long sea passage did make these discoveries, it was not without much perseverance and hard work: by the mid-19th century land suitable for agriculture was short supply, especially in British North America, in the east; the work available was generally low paying and physically taxing construction or factory work; and the English stereotypes concerning the Irish, although less frequent and vehement, were, nevertheless, present in the land of freedom, liberty, and equality for all men. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine
during the late 1840s. Research into passenger and immigration lists has brought forth evidence of the early members of the MacDonlevy family in North America: Gregory Donlevy, who was naturalized in New York, NY in 1798; Walter Donlevy, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1813; Francis William Donlevy, who was naturalized in South Carolina in 1816.