MacDonough History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

All Irish surnames have underlying meanings that can be traced back to their fullest points when the names first appeared in a Gaelic form. The name MacDonough originally appeared in Gaelic as Mac Donnchadha, which means son of Donnchadh or son of Donagh.

Early Origins of the MacDonough family

The surname MacDonough was first found in County Cork (Irish: Corcaigh) the ancient Kingdom of Deis Muin (Desmond), located on the southwest coast of Ireland in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Important Dates for the MacDonough family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacDonough research. Another 88 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1698, 1746, 1728, 1746, 1779, 1850, 1878 and 1916 are included under the topic Early MacDonough History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacDonough Spelling Variations

The general population of Ireland, like those of Europe and Britain during the Middle Ages, scribes recorded people's names as they saw fit. As a result, surnames often had many spelling variations. For MacDonough some of these variations included: Donaghey, McDonogh, McDonnogh, McDonagh and many more.

Early Notables of the MacDonough family (pre 1700)

Another 47 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacDonough Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the MacDonough family

The 18th and 19th centuries saw many Irish families immigrate to North America in search of land and opportunities. The largest influx of Irish immigrants to the United States and British North America came during the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine laid waste to their homeland. Hundreds of thousands left the island in an attempt to escape the starvation and disease it brought. Although the arrival of such a large number of destitute Irish was not welcomed by the established population in the United States and what would become known as Canada at the time, these Irish were an essential element to the rapid development of these growing industrial nations. They filled the demand for the cheap labor needed for the work in factories and in the construction of bridges, roads, canals, and railways. An examination of passenger and immigration lists has revealed many immigrants bearing the name of MacDonough or one of its variants: James Donaghy who settled in New England in 1805; John (six of this name) arrived in Philadelphia between 1811 and 1867; Alexander Donaghy settled in New York in 1804.

Contemporary Notables of the name MacDonough (post 1700)

  • James MacDonough (b. 1970), American bass guitarist, known for his work with Iced Earth, Nevermore, and recently, Megadeth
  • Glen MacDonough (1870-1924), American writer, lyricist and librettist
  • Thomas MacDonough (1783-1825), American naval officer, known for his successes in the War of 1812, eponym of four ships named the USS Macdonough
  • Harry Macdonough (1871-1931), pseudonym of John Scantlebury Macdonald, a Canadian tenor singer and recording executive
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