Show ContentsMeaney History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Gaelic, otherwise known as Early Modern Irish, was used in Ireland from around the year 1200 until the 18th century. It is from this language that we found the first references to the name Meaney as O Maonaigh. This is derived from the word maonach, meaning wealthy.

Early Origins of the Meaney family

The surname Meaney was first found in County Offaly (Irish: Uíbh Fháilí) originally the Kingdom of Uí Failghe, located in central Ireland in the Province of Leinster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Early History of the Meaney family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Meaney research. Another 66 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Meaney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Meaney 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 Meaney include Mooney, Moony, O'Mooney, Meeny, O'Meany, Meany, O'Meeny, O'Mainy, Meaney and many more.

Early Notables of the Meaney family (pre 1700)

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

Meaney Ranking

In the United States, the name Meaney is the 11,818th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1] However, in Newfoundland, Canada, the name Meaney is ranked the 414th most popular surname with an estimated 113 people with that name. [2]

Canada Meaney migration to Canada +

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 Meaney family came to North America quite early:

Meaney Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Ann Meaney, aged 22, who landed in Quebec in 1833

Australia Meaney migration to Australia +

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

Meaney Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Meaney, aged 21, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Time and Truth" [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Meaney (post 1700) +

  • Kevin Gerard Meaney (1956-2016), American stand-up comedian and actor
  • William S. Meaney, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Connecticut, 1932 [4]
  • John J. Meaney, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for Connecticut State House of Representatives from Orange and West Haven, 1940 [4]
  • J. Clifford Meaney, American Democratic Party politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Bridgeport; Elected 1930 [4]
  • Colm J. Meaney (b. 1953), Irish actor second only to Michael Dorn in most appearances in Star Trek episodes
  • John Meaney (b. 1957), British science fiction author

RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. George Peter Meaney, American 3rd Class passenger from Thomas, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania (1915) and died in the sinking and was recovered [5]

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  2. The order of Common Surnames in 1955 in Newfoundland retrieved on 20th October 2021 (retrieved from Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland by E.R. Seary corrected edition ISBN 0-7735-1782-0)
  3. South Australian Register Thursday 9th May 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Time and Truth 1854. Retrieved
  4. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 4) . Retrieved from
  5. Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from on Facebook