McDempsey History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name McDempsey originally appeared in Gaelic as O Diomasaigh, from the word "diomasach," which means "proud." [1]

Early Origins of the McDempsey family

The surname McDempsey was first found in King's County and Queen's County, where they were traditional Chiefs of Clanmaliere, a territory that lay on both sides of the river Barrow. It contained parts of Geashill and Phillipstown in Kings County and parts of Portnehinch in Queen's County. They claim descent through the O'Connors of Offaly, specifically the 2nd century Irish King, Cathair Mor. [2]

According to O'Hart, they claim descent from through the "Connor" Faley pedigree.

Early History of the McDempsey family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McDempsey research. Another 286 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1193, 1652, 1865, 1599, 1631 and 1641 are included under the topic Early McDempsey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McDempsey 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 McDempsey family name revealed numerous spelling variations, including Dempsey, O'Dempsey, Dempsy, Dempsay, Dempsie and many more.

Early Notables of the McDempsey family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family name at this time was Sir Terence O'Dempsey, knighted May 1599, by Robert Devereux, earl of Essex, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. Terence was created "Baron of Philipstown," and Viscount Clanmaliere, by patent dated 8th July, 1631, temp. Charles I. He had five sons, two of which were clergy:...
Another 52 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McDempsey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the McDempsey family

Thousands of Irish families left for North American shores in the 19th century. These people were searching for a life unencumbered with poverty, hunger, and racial discrimination. Many arrived to eventually find such conditions, but many others simply did not arrive: victims of the diseased, overcrowded ships in which they traveled to the New World. Those who lived to see North American shores were instrumental in the development of the growing nations of Canada and the United States. A thorough examination of passenger and immigration lists has disclosed evidence of many early immigrants of the name McDempsey: Ann, Biddy, Bridget, Catherine, John, and Henry Dempsey who settled in Quebec in 1840; Edward Dempsey settled in New York in 1810; Jeremiah Dempsey settled in Mississippi in 1820.



  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  2. ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)


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