O'Dowline History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The original Gaelic form of the name O'Dowline is O Dubhlaoich, derived from the words dubh, which means "dark featured, great, prodigious, burned" [1], and laoch, referring to a hero or champion.

Early Origins of the O'Dowline family

The surname O'Dowline was first found in Westmeath (Irish: An Iarmhí) in the Irish Midlands, province of Leinster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times. According to O'Hart, the family claim descent through the MacMorough family which are descendants of the Heremon Kings of Ireland and were Chiefs in the County Wicklow and Queen's County. [1]

Early History of the O'Dowline family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Dowline research. Another 83 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1544, 1628, 1590, 1591, 1615, 1628, 1787, 1844, 1787, 1801, 1785 and 1852 are included under the topic Early O'Dowline History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

O'Dowline Spelling Variations

Names from the Middle Ages demonstrate many spelling variations. This is because the recording scribe or church official often decided as to how a person's name was spelt and in what language. Research into the name O'Dowline revealed many variations, including Dowling, O'Dowling, Doolan, Doolin, Dooling, Dowlin and many more.

Early Notables of the O'Dowline family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name at this time was Thady Dowling (1544-1628), an Irish annalist and language grammarian. "was a member of an old native family in the part of Ireland now known as the Queen's County. Of his life little is known beyond the circumstance of his having been about 1590 ecclesiastical treasurer of the see of Leighlin in the county of Carlow. In 1591 Dowling was advanced to the chancellorship of that see. He is mentioned in the record of a regal visitation in 1615 as an ancient Irish minister aged seventy-one, qualified to teach...
Another 96 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Dowline Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the O'Dowline family

During the 19th century thousands of impoverished Irish families made the long journey to British North America and the United States. These people were leaving a land that had become beset with poverty, lack of opportunity, and hunger. In North America, they hoped to find land, work, and political and religious freedoms. Although the majority of the immigrants that survived the long sea passage did make these discoveries, it was not without much perseverance and hard work: by the mid-19th century land suitable for agriculture was short supply, especially in British North America, in the east; the work available was generally low paying and physically taxing construction or factory work; and the English stereotypes concerning the Irish, although less frequent and vehement, were, nevertheless, present in the land of freedom, liberty, and equality for all men. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Research into passenger and immigration lists has brought forth evidence of the early members of the O'Dowline family in North America: Terence Dowlin, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1808 with his brother John; Bernard, Brian, Edward, James, John, Lawrence, Michael, Patrick, Samuel, Thomas, and William Dowling, who all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1865.



  1. ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)


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