O'Scanlan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name O'Scanlan originally appeared in Gaelic as O Scannlain or Mac Scannlain, which are both derived from the word "scannal," which means "contention."
Early Origins of the O'Scanlan family
The surname O'Scanlan was first found in County Louth (Irish: Lú) the smallest county in Ireland, located on the East coast, in the Province of Leinster. "The Mac Scanlans were a sept of Louth, from whom the ancient locality of Bally Mac Scanlan took its name. The first of the family mentioned by D'Alton is Patrick O'Scanlan, who was made archbishop or Armagh in 1261. "  According to O'Hart, the family claim descent from the Heremon Kings of Ireland, more specifically through the O'Shaughnessey pedigree as Tuadan, brother of Duach was the ancestor of O'Scannla which is Anglicized as Scanlan.  However, MacLysaght claims that there are two quite distinct septs; the O Scannlain of Munster and MacScannlain of Louth. The latter claimed Bally Mac Scanlan (Ballymacscanlan) as their ancient homeland. He continues pointing out that there are six places names Ballymacscanlan throughout Ireland eluding to the family's widespread distribution. 
Important Dates for the O'Scanlan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Scanlan research. Another 77 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 127 and 1272 are included under the topic Early O'Scanlan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Scanlan Spelling Variations
Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname O'Scanlan 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. Scanlan, O'Scannell, O'Scanlan, O'Scanlon, MacScanlan, Scanlin and many more.
Early Notables of the O'Scanlan family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early O'Scanlan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'Scanlan 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'Scanlan family in North America: Anne, Charles, Daniel, Denis, Edward, James, John, Michael, Patrick, Peter, Thomas, Timothy and William Scanlan, who all arrived in Philadelphia between 1800 and 1870.
- ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
- ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)