The Campbell or McCampbell Family

Campbell or McCampbell family crest

(Crest No. 207. Plate 9.)

THE Campbell family is descended from Milesius, King of Spain, through the line of his son Heremon. The founder of the family was Eogan, ancestor of the Northern Hy Nials and son of Nial of the Nine Hostages, King of Ireland, A. D. 379. The ancient name was Cathmhaoil and signifies “Hero in Battle.” The possessions of the clan were located in the present County of Tyrone.

Another family of this name was descended from Faha Canan, A. D. 194, of the line of Lugadth, son of Ith, uncle of Milesius, King of Spain. The possessions of this clan were located in Scotland.

In the “Annals of the Four Masters,” under the year 1185, mention is made of Gilchreest MacCathmhaoil, head chieftain of Kinel Farry, who was slain by O’Hegny aided by Muintir Keevan. Gilchreest MacCathmhaoil was head chieftain of Clan Aongus, Clan Dubhinreacht, Clan Fogarty, Hy Kennoda, and Clan Colla of Fermanagh, and was chief of the councils of the North of Ireland. This name Cathmhaoil was Anglicized respectively, Campbell, Cawell, Cowell, Caulfield, and even Howell. These Cathmhaoils were a powerful clan in Tyrone and many of them in Monaghan, Louth, and Armagh. The territory of Kinel Farry, their patrimonial inheritance, was nearly co-extensive with the barony of Clogher, in the County of Tyrone. This family supplied several bishops to the See of Clogher.

The name is still numerous in the patrimonial locality in Ireland, and many members of the family have risen to prominence in the British Colonies and the United States. Of the latter may be mentioned Hon. Felix Cambell, Member of Congress from New York City and President of the Long Island Trust Company, and his brother, Mr. Patrick Cambell, for many years Chief of Police of the City of Brooklyn, N. Y., whose record in that department for efficiency and merit has been unexcelled. Another well-known member of this family is the Hon. Timothy J. Cambell, Member of Congress for many years from New York City. The name, under its various forms, is still numerous in the original territory and other counties. The McAllens, or Allens, of Innishowen, Donegal, were really Campbells.