Surname History Introduction
Brian Mitchell of Derry Genealogy has compiled concise, one-page histories of 386 surnames, of Gaelic and Planter origin, which are most closely associated, through numerical strength or uniqueness, with North West Ireland (in this instance counties Derry, Donegal, Fermanagh and Tyrone).
There is some repetition on background to surnames in each surname history as the intention was to create a surname history for each surname that enabled the bearer of that surname to understand the wider origins of their surname as well as its connection to a particular locality.
Although only detailed family history research will confirm the actual origins of an ancestor, surname histories are a very useful first step in any exploration of Irish roots. Surnames, as they are very much connected to place in Ireland, are an integral part of Irish identity and family history; hence they further cement a connection with Ireland among the Irish Diaspora.
These surnames and their numerous spelling variations are recorded in the database of church and civil registers, dating from 1628 to 1930, created by Derry Genealogy which is now accessible online at
To read the surname histories click this link :
These family histories are free to view at no cost and with no limit to those with a current subscription.