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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the Irish MacWard family come from? What is the Irish MacWard family crest and coat of arms? When did the MacWard family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the MacWard family history?

The ancient Gaelic form of the Irish name MacWard was Mac an Bhaird, which means son of the bard.

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In the days before Gaelic or English gained any significant semblance of standardization, the scribes who created documents simply recorded names as they sounded. Consequently, in the Middle Ages many people were recorded under different spellings each time their name was written down. Research into the MacWard family history revealed numerous spelling variations of the name, including MacWard, McWard, Macanward, MacCanward, MacAward and many more.

First found in County Galway (Irish: Gaillimh) part of the province of Connacht, located on the west coast of the Island, where they held a family seat from ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacWard research. Another 435 words(31 lines of text) covering the years 1749 and 1794 are included under the topic Early MacWard History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 23 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacWard Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Often leaving from racial discrimination and colonial oppression, thousands of families left Ireland in the 19th century for North America aboard passenger ships. Many early immigrants found a plot of land to call their own, something unimaginable for most Irish families. Those that arrived later were often accommodated as laborers since there was a large demand for cheap labor. This was the fate for many of the families that arrived in North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Whether they became agrarian settlers or industrial workers, the Irish that came to North America were invaluable for rapid development of the infant nations of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the Irish name MacWard or a variant listed above: Elizabeth McWard, who arrived in Philadelphia from Londonderry in 1851; William McWard, who settled in Philadelphia in 1860; Anabella Ward, who came to Philadelphia in 1857.

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  • Owen Roe MacWard (d. 1849), Irish poet


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  1. Johnson, Daniel F. Irish Emigration to New England Through the Port of Saint John, New Brunswick Canada 1841-1849. Baltimore, Maryland: Clearfield, 1996. Print.
  2. Donovan, George Francis. The Pre-Revolutionary Irish in Massachusetts 1620-1775. Menasha, WI: Geroge Banta Publsihing Co., 1932. Print.
  3. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  4. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  5. Somerset Fry, Peter and Fiona Somerset Fry. A History of Ireland. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1993. Print. (ISBN 1-56619-215-3).
  6. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  7. Sullivan, Sir Edward. The Book of Kells 3rd Edition. New York: Crescent Books, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-517-61987-3).
  8. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  9. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  10. MacLysaght, Edward. Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7).
  11. ...

The MacWard Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The MacWard Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 27 October 2010 at 13:49.

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