Show ContentsMcClaffey History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

McClaffey is an ancient Anglo-Saxon surname that came from the baptismal name for the son of John. The given name John was originally derived from the Dutch Hans or Han. 1

Alternatively, the name coule be "a nickname or sign-name [Old English hand, a hand]." 2

And another source notes it is an "ancient personal name. Hand and Hande are, however, surnames without prefix in Hundredorum Rolls. Mr. Ferguson says: "Walking through Handsworth in Staffordshire, and seeing the name of Hand upon the shops, I said to myself, ' Handsworth is the north or estate of a man called Hand, and these may be descendants of that man.'" 3

Early Origins of the McClaffey family

The surname McClaffey was first found in Cheshire where the name first appeared as a forename in the Assize Rolls of 1288, Honde Cottrell. The Hundredorum Rolls of 1279 included Richard Hand in Bedfordshire and later Robert Hind was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex in 1296. Walter Handes was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Warwickshire in 1332. 4

In Yorkshire, The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls had a wide variety of entries: Hanse et uxor ejus; Matilda Han-wyfe; Thomas Hand; and Laurence Hande. 1

Early History of the McClaffey family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McClaffey research. Another 119 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1521, 1588, 1594 and 1890 are included under the topic Early McClaffey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McClaffey Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore,spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. McClaffey has been recorded under many different variations, including Hand, Hands and others.

Early Notables of the McClaffey family

More information is included under the topic Early McClaffey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the McClaffey family to Ireland

Some of the McClaffey family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 77 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the McClaffey family

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name McClaffey or a variant listed above: John Hand who settled in Virginia in 1663; Robert Hand who settled in Virginia in 1635; John Hand, who settled in Lynn Mass. in 1635, one of the 8 men to buy Montauk Point Long Island and established the town of Easthampton.

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X) on Facebook