Mullen History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Mullen originally appeared in Gaelic as either O Meallain, O Maolain or Mac Maolain. The first surname is derived from the word meall, which means pleasant. The second and third surnames are derived from maol, which means bald.

Early Origins of the Mullen family

The surname Mullen was first found in the province of Connacht (Irish: Connachta, (land of the) descendants of Conn) where the Mullen, Mullin and Mullan spellings were popular. They were descended from the Kings of Connacht and are of the same basic stock as the O'Concannons. Branches were also found in Cork, Limerick, and Clare where the Mullane and Mullins spellings were the most frequent. Some were found north in Ulster and Tyrone and Derry. [1] This latter group is difficult to trace as the Scottish MacMullen or McMullen settled there during Cromwell's Plantation of Ulster.

Early History of the Mullen family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mullen research. Another 53 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1729, 1660 and 1720 are included under the topic Early Mullen History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mullen Spelling Variations

Irish names were rarely spelled consistently in the Middle Ages. Spelling variations of the name Mullen dating from that time include Mullan, Mullen, Mullin, Mullens, Mullins, O'Mullen, O'Mullan, O'Mullin, McMullen and many more.

Early Notables of the Mullen family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family name at this time was Allan Mullen, M.D., (born c. 1660), one of the most eminent Irish anatomists; Dr. James Mullen, self educated doctor; Rev. John McMullen, Bishop...
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mullen Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Mullen migration to the United States +

The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish families leaving Ireland for the distant shores of North America and Australia. These families often left their homeland hungry, penniless, and destitute due to the policies of England. Those Irish immigrants that survived the long sea passage initially settled on the eastern seaboard of the continent. Some, however, moved north to a then infant Canada as United Empire Loyalists after ironically serving with the English in the American War of Independence. Others that remained in America later joined the westward migration in search of land. The greatest influx of Irish immigrants, though, came to North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Thousands left Ireland at this time for North America, and those who arrived were immediately put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. In fact, the foundations of today's powerful nations of the United States and Canada were to a larger degree built by the Irish. Archival documents indicate that members of the Mullen family relocated to North American shores quite early:

Mullen Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Thomas Mullen, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1746 [2]
  • John Mullen, who arrived in South Carolina in 1772 [2]
  • Brian Mullen, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1774 [2]
  • Daniel Mullen, who arrived in America in 1782 [2]
  • William Mullen, who arrived in New Castle, Del in 1794 [2]
Mullen Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • D. B. Mullen, who settled in Philadelphia with his wife, son and servants, in 1807
  • Eliza Mullen, who landed in New York, NY in 1811 [2]
  • Robert Mullen, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811 [2]
  • Richard Mullen, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1812 [2]
  • Alexander Mullen, who landed in New York, NY in 1815 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Mullen migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Mullen Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Nancy Mullen, aged 22, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Bartley" in 1833
  • Ann Mullen, aged 5, who landed in Quebec in 1833
  • Mary Mullen, aged 35, who landed in Quebec in 1833
  • Margaret Mullen, aged 13, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Michael Mullen, aged 32, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Trafalgar" from Galway, Ireland
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Mullen migration to Australia +

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

Mullen Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss. Margaret Mullen (North), British Convict who was convicted in Glasgow, Scotland for 7 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 9th March 1847, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [3]
  • George Mullen, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Orator" in 1849 [4]
  • William Mullen, aged 23, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Europa" [5]
  • Bridget Mullen, aged 18, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Europa" [5]
  • Bridget Mullen, aged 20, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Europa" [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Mullen 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:

Mullen Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • James Mullen, aged 24, a farmer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Cartvale" in 1874
  • Mr. Patrick Mullen, (b. 1853), aged 26, British settler travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Stad Haarlem" arriving in Lyttleton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 14th April 1879 [6]
  • Mrs. Mary Ann Mullen, (b. 1855), aged 24, British settler travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Stad Haarlem" arriving in Lyttleton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 14th April 1879 [6]
  • Miss Sarah Mullen, (b. 1851), aged 28, British settler travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Stad Haarlem" arriving in Lyttleton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 14th April 1879 [6]
  • Eliza Mullen, aged 20, a servant, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Tongariro" in 1888

Contemporary Notables of the name Mullen (post 1700) +

  • Harryette Mullen (b. 1953), American poet, short story writer, and literary scholar
  • Joseph Patrick Mullen (b. 1957), retired American professional NHL ice hockey player
  • Sheila Mullen (b. 1957), American model
  • Admiral Michael Glenn Mullen (b. 1946), American 28th Chief of Naval Operations from 2005 to 2007
  • David Mullen (b. 1952), award-winning American artist and photographer
  • Charles W. Mullen, American Democrat politician, Mayor of Bangor, Maine, 1911-12; Candidate for U.S. Representative from Maine 4th District, 1912, 1914; Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Maine, 1924 [7]
  • Charles H. Mullen, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Ohio, 1928 [7]
  • Cecelia E. Mullen, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New Jersey, 1940, 1952 [7]
  • C. H. Mullen, American politician, Circuit Judge in Michigan 9th Circuit, 1979-85 [7]
  • Arthur J. Mullen, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Massachusetts, 1956 [7]
  • ... (Another 56 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Empress of Ireland
  • Mr. Robert Mullen, American Third Class Passenger from Racine, Wisconsin, United States who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [8]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. John Mullen (b. 1921), Scottish Telegraphist serving for the Royal Navy from Burnbank, Hamilton, Lanarkshire, Scotland, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [9]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Thomas George Mullen (1913-1939), Irish Ordnance Artificer 3rd Class with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [10]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Thomas A. Mullen (d. 1912), aged 20, Scottish Steward from Maxwelltown, Dumfries who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Minia [11]
  • Miss Katherine "Katie" Mullen, aged 19, Irish Third Class passenger from Esker, Longford who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and survived in the sinking in life boat 16 [11]


  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th February 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1847
  4. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The ORATOR 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Orator.htm
  5. ^ South Australian Register Monday 14th May 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Europa 1855. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/europa1855.shtml
  6. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  7. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 23) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  8. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  9. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  10. ^ Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/ship68.html
  11. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html


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