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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Origins Available: Irish, Scottish

Where did the Irish Welch family come from? What is the Irish Welch family crest and coat of arms? When did the Welch family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Welch family history?

With the arrival of the Norman invasion of Ireland in the 11th century came new naming traditions to the eastern region of Ireland. These new naming traditions actually meshed fairly well with the pre-existing Irish traditions. Both cultures made significant use of hereditary surnames. And like the native Irish, the Strongbownians often used prefixes to build patronymic surnames, which are names based on the given name of the initial bearer's father or another older relative. Strongbow's followers often created names that were built with the prefix Fitz-, which was derived from the French word fils, and ultimately from the Latin filius, both of which mean son. They also used diminutive suffixes such as -ot, -et, -un, -in, or -el, and occasionally even two suffixes combined to form a double diminutive such as -el-in, -el-ot, -in-ot, and -et-in, to build patronymic names. The surname Welch is derived from Breat(h)nach which literally means Welshman. Phillip Brenagh, known as "Phillip the Welshman" was likely the progenitor of the family. Phillip and his brother David arrived with Strongbow, in 1170.

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A single person's name was often spelt simply as it sounded by medieval scribes and church officials. An investigation into the specific origins the name Welch has revealed that such a practice has resulted in many spelling variations over the years. A few of its variants include: Walsh, Welsh, Welch, Brannagh and others.

First found in Counties Kilkenny, Leix, and Waterford, in Ireland, where they held a family seat from 1170.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Welch research. Another 257 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1170, 1606, 1615, 1618, 1688, 1604, 1580, 1654, 1618 and 1688 are included under the topic Early Welch History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 97 words(7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Welch Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Ireland experienced a dramatic decrease in its population during the 19th century. This was in a great measure, a response to England's imperialistic policies. Hunger and disease took the lives of many Irish people and many more chose to leave their homeland to escape the horrific conditions. North America with its promise of work, freedom, and land was an extremely popular destination for Irish families. For those families that survived the journey, all three of these things were often attained through much hard work and perseverance. Research into early immigration and passenger lists revealed many immigrants bearing the name Welch:

Welch Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Mary Welch, who landed in Virginia in 1637
  • Morgan Welch, who arrived in Virginia in 1638
  • Nicholas Welch, who landed in Virginia in 1638
  • Daniell Welch, who landed in Virginia in 1638
  • Gilbert Welch, who landed in Virginia in 1650


Welch Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Jone Welch, who arrived in Virginia in 1704
  • Reuben Welch, who landed in Virginia in 1719
  • Jacob Welch, aged 21, landed in Pennsylvania in 1737
  • Hans Martin Welch, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1738
  • Peter Welch, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1742


Welch Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Nally Welch, aged 31, arrived in New York, NY in 1803
  • Edmond Welch, aged 47, landed in Tennessee in 1812
  • Abraham Welch, who arrived in New York in 1834
  • Lawrence Welch, who arrived in Morgan County, Illinois in 1840
  • Robert Welch, aged 26, landed in St Louis, Missouri in 1840


Welch Settlers in United States in the 20th Century


  • James Welch, who arrived in Alabama in 1918
  • Rudolph George Welch, who arrived in Alabama in 1919

Welch Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century


  • Thomas Welch, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750

Welch Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • James Welch, aged 21, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1833 aboard the ship "John & Mary" from Belfast
  • Joseph Welch, aged 20, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1833 aboard the ship "John & Mary" from Belfast
  • Robert Welch, aged 40, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, NB aboard the ship "Salus" in 1833
  • Catherine Welch, aged 45, arrived in Saint John, NB aboard the ship "Salus" in 1833
  • Jabin T Welch, who arrived in Canada in 1834

Welch Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Thomas Welch, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 29, 1828, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Robert Argyle Welch arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Branken Moor" in 1840
  • Thomas Welch, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Anson" on September 23, 1843, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia
  • Peter Welch arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Mary White" in 1844
  • Elizabeth Welch, aged 55, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Samuel Boddington" in 1849


Welch Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • Elizabeth Delahey Welch, aged 46, a sempstress, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "London" in 1840
  • Edward Welch, aged 18, a butcher, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "London" in 1840
  • Frances Welch, aged 15, a shoebinder, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "London" in 1840
  • Henry Welch, aged 26, a butcher, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "London" in 1840
  • Mary Welch, aged 21, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "London" in 1840


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  • Walter Wilbert Welch (1918-2015), American pastor and educator
  • Tahnee Welch (b. 1961), American actress, known for her roles in Cocoon (1985), I Shot Andy Warhol (1996) and Cocoon: The Return (1988), daughter of Rachel Welch
  • General Larry D. Welch (b. 1934), the 12th Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force
  • Edward J. Welch (1922-2014), American research chemist for DuPont who developed Silverstone, a non-stick plastic coating for cooking materials
  • Christopher Evan Welch (1965-2013), American stage, film and voice actor
  • Jack Welch (1905-1985), American illustrator, best known for his cover illustrations for The Saturday Evening Post
  • Edward F. Welch Jr. (1924-2008), American rear admiral of the United States Navy, President of the Naval War College
  • Carolyn Welch (b. 1929), American bronze medalist figure skater at the 1947 U.S. Figure Skating Championships
  • Robert Lynn "Bob" Welch (b. 1956), American former Major League Baseball starting pitcher
  • Gillian Welch (b. 1967), American Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter

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  • The Tishomingo County Connecti.
  • : History of Skinner-Welch, Adams-Seago and Allied Families of Tishomingo County, Mississippi by Esther Welch Adams.
  • The Welsh (also Welch) Family from the Revolution to the Bicentennial, 1776-1976 by Mrs. Berne Chamberlin.
  • Welch by Jeff D. Welch.
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Transfixus sed non mortuus
Motto Translation: Transfixed but not dead.

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  1. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
  3. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  4. Grehan, Ida. Dictionary of Irish Family Names. Boulder: Roberts Rinehart, 1997. Print. (ISBN 1-57098-137-X).
  5. Somerset Fry, Peter and Fiona Somerset Fry. A History of Ireland. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1993. Print. (ISBN 1-56619-215-3).
  6. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. Print.
  7. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1970. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  8. Hickey, D.J. and J.E. Doherty. A New Dictionary of Irish History form 1800 2nd Edition. Dublin: Gil & MacMillian, 2003. Print.
  9. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  10. McDonnell, Frances. Emigrants from Ireland to America 1735-1743 A Transcription of the report of the Irish House of Commons into Enforced emigration to America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1331-5).
  11. ...

The Welch Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Welch 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 August 2015 at 17:19.

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