Hooley Family History
The family history of the ancient name Hooley
was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. Variants of the Irish name Hooley include Whooley, Wholey, Houley, Holey, Hoolie and many others. These names are anglicized forms of the Gaelic O'hUallaigh sept that was located in Connaught and Munster. A different sept of O'hUallachain was located in County Clare and parts of Leinster.
A sept or clan is a collective term describing a group of persons whose immediate ancestors bore a common surname and inhabited the same territory. It is also the case that many Irish septs or clans that are related often belong to a larger groups, sometimes called tribes. For example the 'Tribes of Galway' consisted of fourteen distinct families. The 'Tribes of Kilkenny' were ten families, etc.
Still other families of the name are from County Cork in the very south of Ireland where some O'Driscoll families near Clonakilty assumed the name Whooley. A very early bearer of the name was O'Houlig who was recorded in the 'Fiant Litterae Patentes' of County Cork in the year 1581. The root of these names is the Gaelic word 'uallach', meaning 'boastful'. When Gaelic names were anglicized during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries they were often changed to Anglo equivalents that sounded most like their original Gaelic name.The Hooley
family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including Hooley