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FITZGERALD Family History

Fitz Gerald, Fitzgerald: 'fitz' is Norman-French for ?son?. The name Gerald is of Germanic origin, meaning -spear-rule, and there is a tradition that says the Fitzgeralds originated in Schwaben, Germany. Other traditions say that they descend from the Ghiraldini of Florence in Tuscany.

Since Maurice, son of Gerald de Windsor and Welsh Princess Nesta of Deheubarth, came with the Norman invaders in 1170 the Fitzgeralds or Geraldines (which also includes the Carew, Fitzmaurice and Fitzgibbon families) became one of the most powerful tribes in Ireland.

Forming the Earls of Kildare ( a branch of which later received the British title of Dukes of Leinster) and Earls of Desmond in Munster, their fame and fortune grew. In the 15th century Garret Mor, 8th Earl of Kildare, was for 40 years regarded in all but name as King of Ireland. An early Earl of Desmond created his three illegitimate sons Knight of Glin, Knight of Kerry and the (no longer surviving) White Knight (Fitzgibbon).

In succeeding generations many Fitzgeralds who opposed English rule were imprisoned or executed in the Tower of London, as 'Silken Thomas' an inveterate rebel although born in England in 1513 (his mother being English was a cousin of Henry V11). The Earls of Desmond were in rebellion for many terrible years and became extinct in the early 17th century when the 16th Earl was killed in Elizabethan times (Betrayed by a treacherous Moriarty!). They built numerous castles, a number of which are still in good condition.

By the time of Griffith's Valuation (1847-60) most households of Fitzgeralds were in the following counties: Cork (833) Limerick(687)
Kerry (578) Waterford (410) and Tipperary (259)

In the Registrar General's Report on births in 1890, the highest occurrences were in counties Cork, Limerick and Kerry, and it had the 36th most highest count.

Two Famous Fitzgeralds:
Gearóid Iarla, 2nd Earl of Desmond (14th c) magician and wizard who is said to haunt the beautiful Loch Gur in Co Limerick.
Lord Edward FitzGerald (1763-1798) revolutionary and member of the United Irishmen. Died slowly of his untreated wounds in captivity.

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Lieby Geri

Looking for information on John Fitzgerald born about 1834. Might have been buried at St. Mary's Church, Dungarvan, Kilkenny. I have a letter he wrote from Dungarvan Union in 1880. Also looking for info on his son Edward B born in 1852. Mother was Bridget. He emigrated maybe in 1863.

Michael Aislabie

Looking for information on my Fitzgerald family: Maurice b: 06 October 1856 Rathmore County Kerry d:29 January 1941 Mangaiti Te Aroha New Zealand. Son of William and Mary Fitzgerald. M:Julia Patrica Whyte b:Kyle Cloughjordan,County Tipperary.


Maurice b: 06 October 1856 Rathmore County Kerry d:29 January 1941 Mangaiti Te Aroha New Zealand. Son of William and Mary Fitzgerald. M:Julia Patrica Whyte b:Kyle Cloughjordan,County Tipperary.

Cheryl Christie

Hello. My name is Cheryl Christie. I am looking for information about my great grandmother, Mary Fitzgerald. She married John O'Dwyer. They had three children, Kathleen, James and John between 1870 and 1880 in Tipperary or Limerick. I am trying to determine Mary's birthdate, date of marriage and date of death. Any information would be welcome.


SI'm looking for information on my granda john fitzgerald he was born in Dublin his mother was Agnes Reiley to her own the moved to scotland early last century his brother was killed in the second war and his name is on the war mammorial at Coatbridge Scotland any help appreciated

Alan Scales

My grandad was lance sergeant Harry Fitzgerald who died in Burma in WW2

Teresa Fitzgerald

My Dad, John Fitzgerald was born in Tramore Co. Waterford. He had four siblings, Frank Freddie, Mamie and Kathleen. His father, John Joe was born into a very big family in Tramore in the gatehouse of what may have been a convent or priory. My grandmother was Eileen Dunne. I think my great grandfather may have come from either Waterford or Wexford.


In 1850, John (b: 4, Mar 1826), Richard (10 Apr 1827), James (b: 4 May 1828), Catherine (5 Dec 1829), John (20 Sept 1831) traveled to the US through New York, Settling in Buffalo County, WI. They were baptized in Dromin-Athlaca, Limerick county. Parents were William Fitzgerald and Johanna Brown. Richard is my Great Grandfather. It would be great to make any connections,info on how to identify William and Johanna. I don't imagine there would be family left since all the siblings left together.


Hi my name is matt1965- my dad johnSean 1929-my grandad john 1898 my great grandad William187 7 my great great grandad john1847 he was from ballingarry Tipperary i am look for info on his sonsRichard 1872 and john1887 and their sisters Ellen, Johanna, Mary, Margaret anyone with any info can e-mail me

  • Patrickswell Fitzgeralds

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