Our Family Origins
This particular branch of the Daly Clan
moved from England to the USA in 1987.
Mick (Michael Leslie Daly) was born 7/28/1946 in Bristol; Jenny (Jennifer Pat Waterhouse)
was born in Bournemouth 6/16/1948.
Mick's father was Maurice Daly, born in Bristol 2/8/1909 (died 6/23/1985). His mother was Ivy
Adelaide Sampson, born in Bristol 10/21/1911 (died 2/24/1984). Maurice & Ivy married 8/27/1932 in Bristol. Maurice
was the son of Maurice Daly, born in Cork, County Cork, Ireland 8/21/1875.
Ivy was the daughter of William Thomas Sampson, born 4/22/1873 (died 12/2/1961), and
Sophia Duffett, born 1/18/1874. William was the son of William Sampson and Gertrude Chambers. Sophia was the daughter of James Duffett and Emma Leah King.
We are gathering information on our family roots, so if you have any connection
with, or information about, any of our ancestors, please
The Origins of our Family Name
Daly, or O'Daly, is the
anglicised version of the ancient Gaelic surname Ó Dálaigh (grandson or male descendant of
Dálach, pronounced O'Dhaulee).
The O'Dálaigh are one of many of the clans of Ireland that trace their heritage to a single common ancestor.
Dálach, who died around 600 AD, was chieftain of the Corca Adaimh (of Teffia in Westmeath). His clan claimed
descent from Maine, one of the many sons of Niall of the Nine Hostages. Niall (pronounced Nall) reigned as
Ireland's high king from A.D. 379 to 405 (just before the advent of Saint Patrick). The Corca Adaimh were part of
the Southern Uí Néill, who for 600 years provided many of the High Kings at Tara.
Dálach became chief poet (ollav) to the king of Munster when the incumbent, Colmán mac Leníne (c.522
- 604), was made a bishop in the fledgling Christian church. Colmán, who was converted at age 50 by St. Brendan
(probably fresh from discovering North America), went on to become Saint Colmán of Cloyne and naturally enough
the patron saint of the descendants of Dálach. Colmán is also reputed to have taught St. Columba to read. His
feast day is 24th November.
The poets or bards (fili) were the inheritors of much of the Druidic learning, responsible for
preserving all the ancient sagas and recording kingly deeds and genealogies. Like the other major families of
hereditary poets, the descendants of Dálach maintained special bardic schools, in which their skills &
knowledge were passed on orally over a 12 year course of study.
The earliest officially recording of the name was Cuchonnacht O'Dálaigh, who lived in Teffia, in what is now
the County of Westmeath. Being noted for his learning, he was called "Cuchonnacht na Sgoile," meaning
"Cuchonnacht of the School." He died in the year 1139.
The most reknowned poet of the clan was Donnchadh Mór Ó Dálaigh. When recording his death in 1244, the
Annals of the Four Masters describe him as "a poet who never was and never will be surpassed". His
brother, Muiredhach, was forced to flee to Scotland after incurring the wrath of the local king for taking an axe
to the latter's steward, who got a bit lippy when collecting taxes. While in Scotland Muiredhach founded a Scots
branch of the clan, MacMhuirich (MacVurrich), chief poets to the MacDonalds of ClanRanald.
Over the seven centuries since those days, the Daly's (O'Daly, Daly, Daley, Daily, Dailey, Dayley and Dawley,
and other forms of O'Dalaigh) have travelled to every continent and put down roots in almost every country in the
world. We are privileged to have joined them! If you, too, are an ancestor of O'Dálach, "CEAD MILE FAILTE
O'DALAIGH" (A Hundred Thousand Welcomes to you O'Daly)! Email us!
Castle Daly, Loughrea, Galway
Family Motto: "Deo et regi fidelis" (loyal to God and King)