MacDuffie History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The original Gaelic form of MacDuffie was O Dubhthaigh. The first portion of the name is the word "dubh," which means "black," while the second portion is likely an obsolete Irish forename. The sept claim descent from the ancient Heremon Kings of Ireland. Through O'Conner Faley, Lords of Offaley (now Offaly), they descend from "Cahir Mor, King of Leinster in the beginning of the second century. He divided his great possessions amongst his thirty sons in a Will called 'The will of Cahir More,' contained in the 'Book of Leacan' and in the 'Book of Balymote.' His posterity formed the principal families in Leinster."  O'Duffy was listed as one of these such families.
Early Origins of the MacDuffie family
The surname MacDuffie was first found in Connacht (Irish: Connachta, (land of the) descendants of Conn), where they held a family seat from very ancient times, and were one of the many families descended from the great Kings of Ireland called the "Three Collas." Descending from the Clan Colla was Duffy, Lord of Fermanagh.
However, "there are several distinct septs of O'Duffy. One belongs to the parish of Lower Templecrone in the diocese of Raphoe, Co. Donegal, the patron saint of which is the seventh century Saint Dubhthach, or Duffy. The Connacht sept, the centre of whose territory was Lissonnuffy or Lissduffy near Strokestown, named after them, was remarkable for the number of distinguished ecclesiastics it produced." 
Without a doubt, the oldest records of the family include: Muireadach Ó'Dubthaigh (Murdagh O'Duffy) (1075-1150), Archbishop of Tuam in the county of Connaught and Cadhla Ó'Dubthaigh, (Cele O'Duffy) Archbishop of Tuam, Ambassador to Henry II in 1175. 
The Monaghan branch of the family were principally found in Attyduffy or Attyduff  and "modern statistics show that it is now most numerous name in Co. Monaghan." 
Important Dates for the MacDuffie family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacDuffie research. Another 266 words (19 lines of text) covering the years 1075, 1150, 1501, 1175, 1527, 1615, 1527, 1615, 1675, 1671, 1809 and 1871 are included under the topic Early MacDuffie History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacDuffie Spelling Variations
Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname MacDuffie were found. These included One reason for the many variations is that scribes and church officials often spelled an individual's name as it sounded. This imprecise method often led to many versions. Duffey, Duff, Duffy, O'Duffey, O'Duffy, Duffe, O'Duffe, Doey, Dohey, Doohey, O'Dowey and many more.
Early Notables of the MacDuffie family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family at this time was Father Eugene O'Duffy (c. 1527-1615), preacher and satirist on the apostate bishop Miler Magrath; The Most Reverend Patrick...
Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacDuffie Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacDuffie migration to the United States
The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish families leaving Ireland for the distant shores of North America and Australia. These families often left their homeland hungry, penniless, and destitute do to the policies of England. Those Irish immigrants that survived the long sea passage initially settled on the eastern seaboard of the continent. Some, however, moved north to a then infant Canada as United Empire Loyalists after ironically serving with the English in the American War of Independence. Others that remained in America later joined the westward migration in search of land. The greatest influx of Irish immigrants, though, came to North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Thousands left Ireland at this time for North America, and those who arrived were immediately put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. In fact, the foundations of today's powerful nations of the United Sates and Canada were to a larger degree built by the Irish. Archival documents indicate that members of the MacDuffie family relocated to North American shores quite early:
MacDuffie Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Rufus L. MacDuffie, aged 57, who arrived at New York City, NY, in 1924
- ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
- ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
- ^ MacLysaght, Edward, The Surnames of Ireland. Ireland: Irish Academic Press, sixth edition, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2366-3)