McMeekin History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The surname McMeekin originally appeared in Gaelic as "O Miadhachain," which is derived from the word miadhach, meaning honorable. [1]

Early Origins of the McMeekin family

The surname McMeekin was first found in County Leitrim (Irish: Liatroim) anciently the western half of the kingdom of Breifne, located in Northeastern Ireland, in Leinster province, Originally, "Ó Miadhacháin, this is the name of at least two distinct septs; it is now equally distributed throughout the four provinces." [2]

Important Dates for the McMeekin family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McMeekin research. Another 92 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 117 and 1172 are included under the topic Early McMeekin History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McMeekin Spelling Variations

The Middle Ages saw a great number of spelling variations for surnames common to the Irish landscape. One reason for these variations is the fact that surnames were not rigidly fixed by this period. The following variations for the name McMeekin were encountered in the archives: Meighan, Meehan, Meegin, Meeghen, Meegan, Meakin, Meakins, Mekins, Mehan, Mehen, Mehigan, Mehegan, O'Meighan, O'Meehan and many more.

Early Notables of the McMeekin family (pre 1700)

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

McMeekin migration to the United States

In the 19th century, thousands of Irish left their English-occupied homeland for North America. Like most new world settlers, the Irish initially settled on the eastern shores of the continent but began to move westward with the promise of owning land. The height of this Irish migration came during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. With apparently nothing to lose, Irish people left on ships bound for North America and Australia. Unfortunately a great many of these passengers lost their lives - the only thing many had left - to disease, starvation, and accidents during the long and dangerous journey. Those who did safely arrive in "the land of opportunities" were often used for the hard labor of building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. The Irish were critical to the quick development of the infrastructure of the United States and Canada. Passenger and immigration lists indicate that members of the McMeekin family came to North America quite early:

McMeekin Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Alexander McMeekin, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1803
  • Alexander McMeekin, aged 21, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1803 [3]
  • David McMeekin, who arrived in New York in 1847 [3]

McMeekin migration to Canada

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

McMeekin Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Miss. Catherine McMeekin, aged 14 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Champion" departing 13th July 1847 from Liverpool, England; the ship arrived on 28th August 1847 but she died on board [4]
  • Miss. Mary Ann McMeekin, aged 3 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Champion" departing 13th July 1847 from Liverpool, England; the ship arrived on 28th August 1847 but she died on board [4]

McMeekin 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:

McMeekin Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Mcmeekin, (b. 1863), aged 10 months, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "David G. Fleming" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 9th December 1863 [5]
  • Mr. Charles Mcmeekin, (b. 1826), aged 37, British farm labourer travelling from London aboard the ship "David G. Fleming" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 9th December 1863 [5]
  • Mrs. Agnes Mcmeekin, (b. 1833), aged 30, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "David G. Fleming" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 9th December 1863 [5]
  • Mr. James Mcmeekin, (b. 1856), aged 7, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "David G. Fleming" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 9th December 1863 [5]
  • Miss Sarah Mcmeekin, (b. 1860), aged 3, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "David G. Fleming" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 9th December 1863 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name McMeekin (post 1700)

  • Stan McMeekin, American cinematographer
  • Melissa McMeekin (b. 1972), American actress and producer, known for The Fighter (2010), American Hustle (2013) and Unfinished Business (2015)
  • Duncan McMeekin QC (b. 1955), Australian jurist, justice of the Supreme Court of Queensland in the Trial Division
  • Thomas Doodputlee McMeekin (1866-1946), British Olympic gold medalist sailor at the 1908 Summer Olympics
  • Lieutenant-General Sir Terence Douglas Herbert McMeekin KCB CBE (1918-1984), former British Army officer, General Officer Commanding the 3rd Division (1968-1970), GOC South East District (1972-1974)
  • Richard McMeekin, Canadian politician, MPP for Sault Ste. Marie in 1937
  • Ted McMeekin (b. 1948), Canadian politician, Minister of Community and Social Services (2013), Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing (2014)
  • Brian McMeekin, Canadian professional (NHL) hockey player

Historic Events for the McMeekin family

HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. George Mcmeekin, English Stoker, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [6]

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Citations

  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 88)
  5. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  6. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
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