McKelvey History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Irish surname McKelvey originally appeared in Gaelic as "Mac Fhiodhbhuidhe," which is probably derived from the word "fiodhbhadhach," referring to "a woodman."

Early Origins of the McKelvey family

The surname McKelvey was first found in Wexford (Irish: Loch Garman), founded by Vikings as Waesfjord, and located in Southeastern Ireland, in the province of Leinster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Early History of the McKelvey family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McKelvey research. Another 107 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1100 and 1563 are included under the topic Early McKelvey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McKelvey Spelling Variations

A name was often recorded during the Middle Ages under several different spelling variations during the life of its bearer because literacy was rare there was no real push to clearly define any of the languages found in the British Isles at that time. Variations found of the name McKelvey include McEvoy, Evoy, McGilloway, McVeagh, McVeigh, McAvoy, McElwee, McElwy and many more.

Early Notables of the McKelvey family (pre 1700)

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


United States McKelvey migration to the United States +

A great mass of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century, seeking relief from various forms of social, religious, and economic discrimination. This Irish exodus was primarily to North America. If the migrants survived the long ocean journey, many unfortunately would find more discrimination in the colonies of British North America and the fledgling United States of America. These newly arrived Irish were, however, wanted as a cheap source of labor for the many large agricultural and industrial projects that were essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the western world. Early immigration and passenger lists indicate many people bearing the McKelvey name:

McKelvey Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • James McKelvey, who arrived in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1767
McKelvey Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William McKelvey, who arrived in America in 1802 [1]
  • David McKelvey, who was naturalized in South Carolina in 1805
  • Hugh McKelvey, who was naturalized in Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania in 1807
  • Hugh McKelvey, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1807 [1]
  • John McKelvey, aged 27, who landed in New York in 1812 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand McKelvey migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

McKelvey Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • James McKelvey, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ernestina" in 1865
  • Mary A. McKelvey, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ernestina" in 1865
  • David McKelvey, aged 20, a ploughman, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Rakaia" in 1878

Contemporary Notables of the name McKelvey (post 1700) +

  • Rob McKelvey (b. 1969), American professional golfer who played on the Nationwide Tour
  • John Wellington "Mac" McKelvey (1847-1944), American Major League Baseball player who played for the New Haven Elm Citys in 1875, the Oldest recognized verified living baseball player (1937-1944)
  • Tara Shannon McKelvey, American journalist and correspondent for Newsweek/The Daily Beast
  • Vincent Ellis McKelvey (1916-1987), American geologist and earth scientist who spent 46 years with the United States Geological Survey, 9th Director of the United States Geological Survey (1971-1978)
  • J. J. McKelvey (b. 1980), American football wide receiver
  • Richard McKelvey (1944-2002), American political scientist
  • Andrew McKelvey (b. 1935), American founder, chairman, and CEO of TMP Worldwide, the world's largest seller of yellow page ads
  • Frank McKelvey (1895-1974), Irish painter from Belfast
  • Joe McKelvey (d. 1922), Irish Republican Army officer who was executed during the Irish Civil War
  • Mr. William Joseph McKelvey B.E.M., British recipient of Medallist of the British Empire Medal 29th December 2018 for services to the community in County Tyrone [2]
  • ... (Another 5 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


Suggested Readings for the name McKelvey +

  • 3144 The Voyage from Ireland by W. Conrad McKelvey.

  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  2. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018, www.thegazette.co.uk/honours-lists


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