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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016

The surname McQuillen is derived from the personal name Hugelin, which is a diminutive of Hugh. The Gaelic form of the name is Mac Uighilin.


The surname McQuillen was first found in County Antrim (Irish: Aontroim) located in the province of Ulster in present day Northern Ireland, where they were granted lands by Strongbow after the Anglo/ Norman invasion of Ireland in 1172. Specifically, "The MacQuillans were lords of the territory of the Routes, in co. Antrim, holding their chief residence in the fine old sea-girt castle of Dunluce." MacLysaght agrees "The MacQillans are of Norman- Welsh descent: they settled soon after the invasion in the territory called the Route (co. Antrim.)" [1]

During an investigation of the origin of each name, it was found that church officials and medieval scribes spelled many surnames as they sounded. Therefore, during the lifetime of a single person, a name could be spelt numerous ways. Some of the spelling variations for the name McQuillen include McQuillan, McQuillen, McQuillian, McQuillin, McQuillon, McCailin, McAilin, MacQuillian, MacQuillon, MacCaillion, MacQuillin, MacQuillan, McKillan, McQuilland, McAiland, McAylin, McCaillion, McKillion, McKillin, McKillon, MacKillan, MacQuilland, MacAyland, MacAilan, Quillan and many more.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McQuillen research. Another 277 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1315, 1500 and 1750 are included under the topic Early McQuillen History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


Ireland experienced a dramatic decrease in its population during the 19th century. This was in a great measure, a response to England's imperialistic policies. Hunger and disease took the lives of many Irish people and many more chose to leave their homeland to escape the horrific conditions. North America with its promise of work, freedom, and land was an extremely popular destination for Irish families. For those families that survived the journey, all three of these things were often attained through much hard work and perseverance. Research into early immigration and passenger lists revealed many immigrants bearing the name McQuillen:

McQuillen Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • John McQuillen, who arrived in Charleston, South Carolina in 1772
  • Edward McQuillen, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1773

McQuillen Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • George McQuillen, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1860
  • Edward, George, Patrick, Phillip, Roger, and Thomas McQuillen all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860
  • Dan N. McQuillen, aged 38, who landed in America, in 1895
  • Emily Price McQuillen, aged 33, who settled in America, in 1895
  • Mary McQuillen, aged 32, who emigrated to America from Drogheda, in 1898

McQuillen Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Bridget McQuillen, aged 14, who settled in America from Liverpool, in 1901
  • Minnie McQuillen, aged 20, who landed in America from Tullynahanera, Monaghan, in 1906
  • Rose Ann McQuillen, aged 23, who settled in America from Drogreda, Ireland, in 1907
  • John McQuillen, aged 31, who landed in America, in 1909
  • Owen McQuillen, aged 20, who emigrated to the United States from Stanley, England, in 1910

McQuillen Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Owen McQuillen arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Constance" in 1849


  • Bob McQuillen (1923-2014), American teacher, musician, and prolific composer of contra dance tunes
  • Glenn Richard "Red" McQuillen (1915-1989), American Major League Baseball reserve outfielder


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  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)

Other References

  1. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1970. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  2. 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.
  3. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  4. MacLysaght, Edward. Mores Irish Familes. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0).
  5. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. Print.
  6. Woulfe, Rev. Patrick. Irish Names and Surnames Collected and Edited with Explanatory and Historical Notes. Kansas City: Genealogical Foundation, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-940134-403).
  7. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Vicars, Sir Arthur. Index to the Prerogative Wills of Ireland 1536-1810. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  9. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
  10. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
  11. ...

The McQuillen Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The McQuillen 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 18 June 2015 at 16:10.

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