What is the origin of the last name Mckinney?

The last name McKinney originates from Scotland and Ireland. It is derived from the Gaelic name Mac Coinnich, meaning "son of Coinneach." Coinneach itself is a Scottish Gaelic name derived from the Old Irish name Cainnech, meaning "handsome" or "comely." The name McKinney is believed to have been anglicized upon immigration, primarily during the 18th and 19th centuries, resulting in variations such as McKenna and McKenny. The name has since spread throughout the English-speaking world, with notable concentrations in the United States, Canada, and Australia.

Countries of origin for the last name Mckinney

The last name Mckinney has a rich history and intriguing meaning that is worth exploring. Here are the facts that I know about this surname:

Mckinney is a variant spelling of the Scottish surname MacKinnon, which is derived from the Gaelic name MacFhionghuin, meaning “son of Fingon.” The name Fionghuin originates from the Gaelic elements “fionn” meaning “fair” and “ghuin” meaning “birth.” Therefore, the name Mckinney can be interpreted as “son of the fair one.”

The surname Mckinney is believed to have originated in the Scottish Highlands, specifically in the region of Argyll. The MacKinnon clan was associated with the Isles of Mull and Skye, where they held significant land and played a prominent role in local affairs.

Like many Scottish clans, the MacKinnons faced significant challenges during periods of political unrest and government intervention. The Jacobite uprisings of the 17th and 18th centuries had a profound impact on the clan, leading to the dispersion of many MacKinnon families and the anglicization or alteration of their surnames.

As the surname Mckinney made its way to other parts of the world, particularly North America, variations in spelling emerged. Some branches of the family adopted the “Mc” prefix instead of “Mac,” while others used the double “nn” or opted for different vowel combinations. However, these alterations do not change the fundamental meaning and origin of the name.

Today, Mckinney is a relatively common surname in the United States, particularly in states with significant Scottish heritage such as Texas and North Carolina. The dispersion and migration of the MacKinnon/Mckinney families over the centuries contributed to the surname’s prevalence and diverse regional distribution across the country.

While the meaning and historical context of the Mckinney surname are well-documented, there is always the possibility of uncovering new information or exploring additional branches and variations of the name. Genealogical research, historical records, and DNA analysis continue to provide opportunities for deepening our understanding of this intriguing surname and its connections to individuals and communities across time and space.

Interesting facts about the last name Mckinney

  • The surname McKinney is of Scottish and Irish origin.
  • It is derived from the Gaelic name “Mac Coinnigh” which means “son of Coinneach” or “son of the fair one.”
  • The name McKinney is commonly found in Scotland and Ireland.
  • There are various spelling variations of the surname McKinney, including McKenna, McKenny, MacKenzie, McKenney, McKenny, and others.
  • The McKinney family name is associated with several Scottish clans, including Clan Kennedy and Clan MacDuff.
  • Some notable individuals with the surname McKinney include former United States Congressman Cynthia McKinney, American basketball player Bill McKinney, and Canadian politician John McKinney.
  • The surname McKinney is relatively common in the United States, particularly in states like Texas, North Carolina, and Georgia.
  • McKinney is also the name of a city in Collin County, Texas, which is a suburb of Dallas.
  • In Ireland, the surname McKinney is particularly associated with County Donegal and the Ulster region.
  • The McKinney tartan, a plaid pattern associated with the name, features predominantly green and blue colors.

Name Rank


There are around 83616 people with the last name Mckinney in the US

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