Throughout history, very few Irish surnames have exclusively maintained their original forms. Before being translated into English, O'Henahan appeared as O Dubhain, where the first portion of the word is dubh, which means black, and the second portion is probably derived from some obsolete Irish personal name.
Early Origins of the O'Henahan family
The surname O'Henahan was first found in County Sligo
(Irish: Sligeach), in the province of Connacht
in Northwestern Ireland
, from very ancient times.
Early History of the O'Henahan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Henahan research.Another 379 words (27 lines of text) covering the years 1612, 1679, 1675, 1549, 1628, 1735, 1727, 1735, 1724, 1727, 1720, 1724, 1717 and 1720 are included under the topic Early O'Henahan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Henahan Spelling Variations
Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations
of the surname O'Henahan 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. Downs, Down, Downe, Downes and others.
Early Notables of the O'Henahan family (pre 1700)
Notable among the family name at this time was William Ducie (c.
1612-1679), created 1st Viscount Downe in 1675; Andrew Downes, also known as Dounaeus, (c.1549-1628), English classical scholar, one of the seven translators of the... Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Henahan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'Henahan family to the New World and Oceana
The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish families
for the distant shores of North America and Australia
. These families often left their homeland hungry, penniless, and destitute do 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 Sates and Canada were to a larger degree built by the Irish. Archival documents indicate that members of the O'Henahan family relocated to North American shores quite early: Jane Downe who settled in Jamaica in 1685; John Downe settled in Barbados in 1685; another John Downe settled in Virginia in 1670; Robert Downe settled in St. Christopher in 1635.