Week 44 – Gratitude Challenge – My Heritage

I am a bit fuzzy on my heritage. A few years ago at the Cheltenham Christmas markets, a stall called the Hall of Names was pitched up as I was wandering around with my friend, who decided to get one of his family name, I decided what the heck.

So all the information I am sharing with you now is what I got from them.

The surname Mckew in Ireland has evolved from the Gaelic Mac Aodha, which means son of Aodh or son of Hugh. Irish culture has been formed of the great deeds of the many distinguished Septs and families of Ireland, not the least of which was Mckew.

Preferences for the spelling variations came about due to the divisions of the family and sometimes for religious or patriotic reasons. Churches would spell the name has it sounded, sometimes several different ways in the lifetime of the same person.

Traditionally, the ancient kings of Ireland were descended from King Miloesius of Spain, the grandson of Bredoghan (Brian) King of Galicia, Andalusia, Murcia, Castile and Portugal. Milesius wanted to fulfil an ancient Druidic prophecy and focused on Ireland to do this. He sent an army to explore the island and learnt his son was murdered by Irish Kings residing there, so he gathered another name to claim revenge, but died before he could embark on this mission. His remaining eight sons conquered Ireland.

Years later the name Mckew emerged in Connacht as the name of a great Gaelic family. Their descendants are traced back to the Fergus Clan, the Kings of the Connacht. They were known to hold territories in Barony of Clare in County Galway, as well as Cavan, Donegal and Longford.

Following on from there, the records show that the first settlers to Australia were transported from Britain to the colonies. Recorded is another Sarah Mckew who arrived in Adelaide aboard the ship ‘Navarino’ in 1837 along with her family Jane, Margaret, Mary Ann and John Mckew.

Although I am limited on the background of my heritage, this is a good place for me to start and explore further. I think the most exciting facts I learnt was that fact that the first settlers in Australia with my family name were called Sarah and John, my grandfather’s name.

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