The Clan/Sept History
The Gaelic name used by the O Moroney family in ancient Ireland was O
Maolruanaidh, which means descendant of Ruanaidh or descendant of Rooney.
The illiterate population found in Ireland during the Middle Ages could only
define their names orally. The archives that survive today demonstrate the
difficulty experienced by the scribes of this period in their attempts to record
these names in writing. Spelling variations of the name O Moroney dating from
that time include Moroney, Mulroney, Maroney, Morooney, Mulrooney, Mullrooney,
Marooney and many more.
First found in county Fermanagh, where the family was seated since ancient
Thousands of Irish left in their homeland in the 18th and 19th centuries to
escape the religious and political discrimination they experienced primarily at
the hands of the English, and in the search of a plot of land to call their own.
These immigrants arrived at the eastern shores of North America, early on
settling and breaking the land, and, later, building the bridges, canals, and
railroads essential to the emerging nations of United States and Canada. Many
others would toil for low wages in the dangerous factories of the day. Although
there had been a steady migration of Irish to North America over these years,
the greatest influx of Irish immigrants came to North America during the Great
Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Early North American immigration records have
revealed a number of people bearing the Irish name O Moroney or a variant listed
above: Bridget and Catherine, Michael and Patrick Moroney, who all arrived in
Canada in 1840; John Moroney, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1857; John and
Thomas Mulrooney, who settled in Philadelphia in 1872. In Newfoundland, Patrick
Mulrooney settled in Harbour Grace in 1816.
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