McKearney History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The surname derives from the Gaelic "O Catharnaigh," derived from the word "cearnach," meaning "warlike" or 'victorious'.

Early Origins of the McKearney family

The surname McKearney was first found in County Meath (Irish: An Mhí) anciently part of the kingdom of Brega, located in Eastern Ireland, in the province of Leinster and County Clare where O'Kearney, were chiefs of Avon-Ui-Cearney or O'Kearney's River, a district about Six-Mile-Bridge, in the baronies of Tulla and Bunratty.

Early History of the McKearney family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McKearney research. Another 149 words (11 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McKearney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McKearney Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Carney, Kearney, O'Kearney, O'Carney and others.

Early Notables of the McKearney family (pre 1700)

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


United States McKearney migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

McKearney Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Kate McKearney, aged 30, who immigrated to the United States from Queenstown, in 1892
  • Mrs. Danl. McKearney, aged 48, who settled in America, in 1894
McKearney Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mrs. M. McKearney, aged 40, who landed in America, in 1903
  • Henry McKearney, aged 28, who landed in America from Glasgow, in 1904
  • Ellen McKearney, aged 18, who immigrated to the United States from Crosstones, Armagh, in 1906
  • Annie McKearney, aged 20, who immigrated to the United States from Glasgow, in 1906
  • Jos McKearney, aged 27, who immigrated to the United States from Perth, in 1906
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia McKearney migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

McKearney Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Patrick McKearney, aged 19, who arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Bee"

Contemporary Notables of the name McKearney (post 1700) +

  • Tommy McKearney (b. 1952), Irish republican, socialist, and former hunger striker
  • Pádraig Oliver McKearney (1954-1987), Marxist-oriented Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) volunteer
  • Shamus McKearney (b. 1962), professional Australian Rules footballer
  • Dave McKearney (b. 1968), former English footballer


The McKearney Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Sustine et abstine
Motto Translation: Sustain and abstain


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