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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

Where did the Irish McNamee family come from? What is the Irish McNamee family crest and coat of arms? When did the McNamee family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the McNamee family history?

The original Gaelic form of McNamee was Mac Conmidhe, which means hound of Meath.


The recording of names in Ireland during the Middle Ages was an inconsistent endeavor at best. Since the general population did not know how to read or write, they could only specify how their names should be recorded orally. Research into the name McNamee revealed spelling variations, including McNamee, McNanamy, McNammee, McName, McNanny and others.

First found in county Westmeath (Irish: An Iarmhí) in the Irish Midlands, province of Leinster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McNamee research. Another 386 words(28 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McNamee History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early McNamee Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Irish families left their homeland in astonishing numbers during the 19th century in search of a better life. Although individual reasons vary, most of these Irish families suffered from extreme poverty, lack of work opportunities, and exorbitant rents in their homeland. Many decided to travel to Australia or North America in the hopes of finding greater opportunities and land. The Irish immigrants that came to North America initially settled on the East Coast, often in major centers such as Boston or New York. But like the many other cultures to settle in North America, the Irish traveled to almost any region they felt held greater promise; as a result, many Irish with gold fever moved all the way out to the Pacific coast. Others before that time left for land along the St. Lawrence River and the Niagara Peninsula, or the Maritimes as United Empire Loyalists, for many Irish did choose to side with the English during the American War of Independence. The earliest wave of Irish migration, however, occurred during the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s. An examination of early immigration and passenger lists has revealed many people bearing the McNamee name:

McNamee Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Patrick McNamee, aged 25, arrived in New York, NY in 1804
  • John McNamee, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1845
  • James McNamee, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • Francis McNamee, who landed in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania in 1852
  • Bernard, Charles, Francis, Hugh, James, John, Michael, Patrick, and Thomas McNamee all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860

McNamee Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Patrick McNamee, aged 24, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, NB aboard the ship "Edward Reid" in 1833
  • Biddy McNamee, aged 20, arrived in Saint John, NB aboard the ship "Edward Reid" in 1833
  • Patrick McNamee, aged 29, a labourer, arrived in St. John aboard the ship "Protector" in 1834
  • Patrick McNamee, aged 9, arrived in St. John aboard the ship "Protector" in 1834

McNamee Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Nicholas McNamee arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Trafalgar" in 1847
  • Marcella McNamee, aged 39, a housekeeper, arrived in South Australia in 1853 aboard the ship "Standard"
  • Hugh McNamee, aged 25, a blacksmith, arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Dirigo"
  • James McNamee, aged 22, arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Bee"
  • Julia McNamee, aged 24, a domestic servant, arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Bee"


  • Graham McNamee (1888-1942), American radio broadcaster
  • Joe McNamee (b. 1926), retired American professional NBA basketball player
  • Luke McNamee (1871-1952), American admiral and 12th Naval Governor of Guam, recipient of the Navy Cross
  • Danny McNamee (b. 1960), Irish former electronic engineer who was wrongly convicted
  • Eoin McNamee (b. 1961), Irish writer
  • Anthony McNamee (b. 1984), English left-midfielder
  • David McNamee (b. 1980), Scottish professional footballer
  • Bernie McNamee, Canadian co-host with the CBC
  • Jessica McNamee, Australian actress
  • Peter McNamee (b. 1950), retired Canadian professional WHA ice hockey forward



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  1. Grehan, Ida. Dictionary of Irish Family Names. Boulder: Roberts Rinehart, 1997. Print. (ISBN 1-57098-137-X).
  2. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  3. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1992. Print.
  4. Rasmussen, Louis J. . San Francisco Ship Passenger Lists 4 Volumes Colma, California 1965 Reprint. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1978. Print.
  5. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  6. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  7. Vicars, Sir Arthur. Index to the Prerogative Wills of Ireland 1536-1810. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  8. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  9. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  10. O'Hart, John. Irish Pedigress 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4).
  11. ...

The McNamee Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The McNamee Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 1 December 2014 at 16:07.

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