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The Irish name Morrissey has a long Gaelic heritage to its credit. The original Gaelic form of the name Morrissey is O Muirgheasa, which is derived from the words muir, meaning sea, and geas, meaning action.

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The surname Morrissey was first found in County Sligo (Irish: Sligeach), in the province of Connacht in Northwestern Ireland.

Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname Morrissey were found. These included One reason for the many variations is that scribes and church officials often spelled an individual's name as it sounded. This imprecise method often led to many versions. Morrissey, O'Morrissey and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Morrissey research. Another 371 words (26 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Morrissey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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

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A massive amount of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century for North America and Australia in hopes of finding more opportunities and an escape from discrimination and oppression. A great portion of these migrants arrived on the eastern shores of the North American continent. Although they were generally poor and destitute, and, therefore, again discriminated against, these Irish people were heartily welcomed for the hard labor involved in the construction of railroads, canals, roadways, and buildings. Many others were put to work in the newly established factories or agricultural projects that were so essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the world. The Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s initiated the largest wave of Iris immigration. Early North American immigration and passenger lists have revealed a number of people bearing the name Morrissey or a variant listed above:

Morrissey Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Richard and William Morrissey settled in Boston in 1823
  • John and James Morrissey arrived in Philadelphia in 1848
  • Roger Morrissey, aged 37, landed in New York, NY in 1848
  • Thomas Morrissey, aged 37, arrived in New York, NY in 1848
  • John Morrissey, aged 40, landed in New York, NY in 1848

Morrissey Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Peter Morrissey, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1817
  • Allis Morrissey, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1821
  • John Morrissey and Hannah with their six children settled in Quebec in 1848

Morrissey Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Michael Morrissey, aged 39, a blacksmith, arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "John Bunyan"
  • Johanna Morrissey, aged 22, a domestic servant, arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "James Fernie"
  • David Morrissey, aged 28, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "David Malcolm"
  • Patrick Morrissey, aged 27, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "David Malcolm"
  • Anne Morrissey, aged 19, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "South Sea"
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  • Brigadier-General William Joseph Morrissey (1888-1965), American Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff, War Department General Staff (1942-1946)
  • Jim Morrissey (b. 1962), former American NFL football linebacker
  • Francis Joseph Morrissey (1899-1968), American football player and coach
  • Bill Morrissey (b. 1951), American folk singer/songwriter
  • Paul Morrissey (b. 1938), American film director
  • Sinéad Morrissey (b. 1972), Northrn Irish poet
  • John "Old Smoke" Morrissey (1831-1878), Irish-born, bare-knuckle boxer and a gang member in New York in the 1850s who later became a Democratic State Senator and U.S. Congressman from New York
  • Donna Morrissey (b. 1956), Canadian Gemini Award winning author from The Beaches, Newfoundland
  • Erin Morrissey, Canadian curler
  • John "Johnny" Morrissey (b. 1940), English former footballer
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Si Deus nobiscum qui contra nos
Motto Translation: If God be with us, who can be against us.

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Citations



    Other References

    1. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
    2. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
    3. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
    4. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
    5. Woodham-Smith, Cecil. The Great Hunger Ireland 1845-1849. New York: Old Town Books, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-385-3).
    6. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
    7. Heraldic Scroll and Map of Family names and Origins of Ireland. Dublin: Mullins. Print.
    8. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    9. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1970. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
    10. Read, Charles Anderson. The Cabinet of Irish Literature Selections from the Works of the Chief Poets, Orators and Prose Writers of Ireland 4 Volumes. London: Blackie and Son, 1884. Print.
    11. ...

    The Morrissey Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Morrissey 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 22 May 2016 at 10:08.

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