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Irish names tend to vary widely in their spelling and overall form. The original Gaelic form of the name Sweeney is Mac Suibhne, which is derived from the word "suibhne," which means "pleasant."

Sweeney Early Origins



The surname Sweeney was first found in County Donegal (Irish: Dún na nGall), northwest Ireland in the province of Ulster, sometimes referred to as County Tyrconnel. The name is derived from Suibhne O'Neill, who was a chieftain in Argyll, Scotland. His descendants migrated to Ireland as gallowglasses (mercenaries) prior to 1267. The three great septs of this name finally established themselves in Tirconnell in 14th century; they were known as MacSweeney Fanad, MacSweeney Banagh, and MacSweeney na dTuath, who were commonly referred to as 'MacSweeney of the Battleaxes.' They later became attached to the MacCarthys in the south and acquired their own territories and castles in Muskerry in County Cork.

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Sweeney Spelling Variations


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Sweeney Spelling Variations



The Middle Ages saw a great number of spelling variations for surnames common to the Irish landscape. One reason for these variations is the fact that surnames were not rigidly fixed by this period. The following variations for the name Sweeney were encountered in the archives: MacSweeney, MacSweeny, MacSwine, MacSwiney, MacSwyne, MacSwyny, MacWhinney, MacWhinny, MacWhinnie, MacSwiny, McSweeney, Swiney, Swinney and many more.

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Sweeney Early History


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Sweeney Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Sweeney research. Another 137 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1299 and 1310 are included under the topic Early Sweeney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Sweeney Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Sweeney Early Notables (pre 1700)



Prominent amongst the family at this time was John MacSween, a 13th-14th century nobleman who lost his lands in Scotland after the defeat of the forces and death of Alexander Og MacDonald, Lord of Islay in 1299. In...

Another 37 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Sweeney Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



In the 19th century, thousands of Irish left their English-occupied homeland for North Ameri ca. Like most new world settlers, the Irish initially settled on the eastern shores of the continent but began to move westward with the promise of owning land. The height of this Irish migration came during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. With apparently nothing to lose, Irish people left on ships bound for North America and Australia. Unfortunately a great many of these passengers lost their lives - the only thing many had left - to disease, starvation, and accidents during the long and dangerous journey. Those who did safely arrive in "the land of opportunities" were often used for the hard labor of building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. The Irish were critical to the quick development of the infrastructure of the United States and Canada. Passenger and immigration lists indicate that members of the Sweeney family came to North America quite early:

Sweeney Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Alexander Sweeney, who came to Boston in 1768

Sweeney Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Adam Sweeney, who settled in New York, NY in 1805
  • Daniel Sweeney, who came to Philadelphia in 1808
  • Charles Sweeney, who arrived in America in 1812
  • P Sweeney, who landed in New York, NY in 1812
  • Terrence Sweeney, who arrived in New London, Conn in 1816
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Sweeney Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Cornelius Sweeney, who arrived in Canada in 1823
  • Denis Sweeney, who landed in Canada in 1823
  • Kitty Sweeney, who arrived in Canada in 1823
  • Margaret Sweeney, who landed in Canada in 1823
  • Mary Sweeney, who landed in Canada in 1823
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Sweeney Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Ellen Sweeney arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Lysander" in 1839 [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
    State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) LYSANDER 1839. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1839Lysander.htm
  • John Sweeney arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Harpley" in 1848
  • Mary Anne Sweeney arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Harpley" in 1848
  • Therese Sweeney arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Harpley" in 1848
  • Elizabeth Sweeney, aged 23, arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Harry Lorrequer"
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Sweeney Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Eugene Sweeney, aged 30, a labourer, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Eveline" in 1865
  • Bridget Sweeney, aged 24, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Eveline" in 1865
  • James Sweeney, aged 19, a labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Halcione" in 1870
  • Elizabeth Sweeney, aged 50, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Halcione" in 1870
  • Cornelius Sweeney, aged 30, a farm labourer, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Assaye" in 1874
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

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Contemporary Notables of the name Sweeney (post 1700)


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Contemporary Notables of the name Sweeney (post 1700)



  • John Joseph Sweeney (b. 1934), American labor leader, President of the AFL-CIO from 1995 to 2009, recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Alison Sweeney (b. 1976), American television actress
  • Bob Sweeney (b. 1964), American professional ice hockey player
  • John E Sweeney (b. 1955), American Republican politician, representative from New York (1999-)
  • D B Sweeney (b. 1961), American actor
  • Martin Leonard Sweeney (1885-1960), American judge and Democratic politician, representative from Ohio (1931-1943)
  • Charles Sweeney (1919-2004), American USAAF pilot who dropped the atomic bomb "Fat Man" on Nagasaki
  • Robert Augustus Sweeney (1853-1890), American two time recipient of the Medal of Honor
  • Anne-Marie Sweeney, television broadcaster
  • Anne Sweeney (b. 1957), Co-Chair of Disney Media Networks and President of Disney-ABC Television Group
  • ... (Another 2 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

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Sweeney Historic Events


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Sweeney Historic Events




RMS Lusitania

  • Mr. Jeremiah Sweeney, Irish Fireman from Castlebar, Mayo, Ireland, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mr. John Martin Sweeney, American 2nd Class passenger from Watertown, Massachusetts, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking

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Suggested Readings for the name Sweeney


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Suggested Readings for the name Sweeney



  • The Descendants of Redmond Peter Fahey And Cecilia Haverty and John Sweeney and Mary Dineen, 1810-1984 by Verne Raymond Spear.

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Sweeney Family Crest Products


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Sweeney Family Crest Products




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See Also


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See Also




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Citations


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Citations



  1. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) LYSANDER 1839. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1839Lysander.htm

Other References

  1. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  2. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  3. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  4. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  5. O'Hart, John. Irish Pedigress 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4).
  6. Woodham-Smith, Cecil. The Great Hunger Ireland 1845-1849. New York: Old Town Books, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-385-3).
  7. Sullivan, Sir Edward. The Book of Kells 3rd Edition. New York: Crescent Books, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-517-61987-3).
  8. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  9. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  10. Woulfe, Rev. Patrick. Irish Names and Surnames Collected and Edited with Explanatory and Historical Notes. Kansas City: Genealogical Foundation, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-940134-403).
  11. ...

The Sweeney Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Sweeney Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 26 November 2016 at 10:26.

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