While many Irish names are familiar, their past incarnations are often shrouded in mystery, reflecting the ancient Gaelic heritage of their bearers. The original Gaelic form of the name O'Conoleays is O Conghalaigh, O Conghaile, or O Coingheallaigh.
Early Origins of the O'Conoleays family
The surname O'Conoleays was first found in Connacht
, as well as County Monaghan
. There were three Gaelic septs whose name was Anglicized as Connolly: the O Conghalaigh sept (also known as O Conghaile) who lived in Connacht
and the adjacent County Monaghan; the O Coingheallaigh sept, which also used the alias Mac Coingheallaigh, were subordinate to the powerful O'Donovans and dwelled in West Cork in Munster; and another sept, related to the O'Maddens, resided in Connacht
and were of the Ui Maine.
Early History of the O'Conoleays family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Conoleays research.Another 231 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1014, 1591, 1660, 1729, 1738, 1803, 1750 and 1825 are included under the topic Early O'Conoleays History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Conoleays Spelling Variations
During the Middle Ages, scribes recorded people's names as they saw fit. As a result, surnames often had many spelling variations
. For O'Conoleays some of these variations included: Connolly, Conolly, Connally, O'Connolly, Connolley, Conally, Connelly, Conoley, Connaleigh, Connelay, Conley, Conlay, Conlaye and many more.
Early Notables of the O'Conoleays family (pre 1700)
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Conoleays Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'Conoleays family to the New World and Oceana
began leaving their homeland for North America in the late 18th century. These families were usually modestly well off, but they were looking forward to owning and working on a sizable tract of land of their own. This pattern of emigration continued until the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine
sparked a major exodus of destitute and desperate Irish people. These people were not leaving for a grant of land in North America because by this time the East Coast had reached its saturation point and free land was scarce. They were merely looking to escape the disease, starvation, and hopelessness that Ireland
had fallen into. Although these unfortunate immigrants did not receive a warm welcome by the established populations in the United States and what would become Canada, they were absolutely critical to the rapid development that these two nations enjoyed. They would help populate the western lands and provide the cheap labor required for a rapid industrialization. An examination of passenger and immigration lists has revealed many early bearers of the name O'Conoleays or one of its variants: Michael and Thomas Connally who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1834 and 1856 respectively; M. Connolley settled in New York in 1820; John Connolly settled in Virginia in 1773.