Irish Surname Resources

In this section I have included all the letters (and podcasts) I have written that relate to Irish surnames. Ireland has one of the oldest surname systems in the world - originating from about the mid-800s - and knowing a little more about the origin and evolution of the Irish surnames in your family tree will often give you a greater insight into your own family history and Irish culture in general.

 

Browse the features listed on this page and jump to one that interests you, or enter a placename, surname or other item in the search box below to see related letters and podcasts.

Irish Surname Letters

Tribes of Galway

The Tribes of Galway.

A few weeks back, we headed north from Cork to the city of Galway and nearby Connemara. What a beautiful part of the world—maybe you have been there? One of the first things you notice on approaching Galway city is the series of traffic roundabouts that dot its’ periphery. These fourteen roundabouts have a family…

One Man and Many Irish Surnames

Many Irish surnames have spread throughout the world over the last number of centuries. Here is just one example of so many surnames (Irish and otherwise) coming from a single husband and wife.

Scottish Surnames and The Mull of Kintyre

We returned last night from a trip to Dublin. We had an important job to do (more on that later in the letter), but we did get some time to catch up with friends and family. On Friday evening we were all kicking back in front of the fire and the telly—as you do—and on…

Irish Surnames – County Cork Surnames and Places

Do you have a County Cork Irish surname in your Irish family tree? Here we include ALL the County Cork surnames belonging to our readers – and lots of pictures too!

Do You Have an Irish Surname Question?

This is the part of the letter from Ireland where I (Mike) will attempt to answer all your Irish surname questions – or at least steer you in the right direction. All you need to do is to write out your question in the comments section at the end of this page – and I’ll…

Irish Surname Podcast Episodes

O'NEILL AND O'CONNOR

Two Royal Families of Ireland – O’Neill and O’Connor (#835)

This episode explores the major Royal Irish surnames of O’Neill and O’Connor. We talk about Niall of the Nine Hostages, the patriarch of the O’Neills, and the singer Sinéad O’Connor.

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Irish Pioneers In A Far-Away Land (#732)

We look at the stories of two different Irish pioneers in early north America – in what is now the country of Canada. The first is the story of Denis O’Donovan – who had the opportunity to choose his final resting place – and the second is Tadhg O’Brennan who may have been the first…

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Scottish river, the Clyde in Glasgow with Carina

The Irish Scots – A Trip to Glasgow in Scotland (#503)

In this episode of the Letter from Ireland Podcast show, we travel to the city of Glasgow in Scotland to meet two proud Glasgow natives of Irish ancestry. Come with us as we get a unique perspective on this city that saw the arrival of so many Irish immigrants from the 1800s onwards.

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Trim Castle, County Meath, Ireland - One of the first and largest Norman Castles

Anglo Norman Surnames – Following the Norman Trail to Ireland (#402)

Do you have any Anglo Norman surnames in your Irish Family Tree? Then join us now as we talk about some of these Irish surnames and follow the Norman trail all the way back to Ireland.

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Irish Placenames – Is Your Surname Hidden in One of These Places? (#106)

Welcome to Series 1, Episode 6 of the Letter from Ireland Show. In this episode, we look at Irish placenames and townlands.

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