Surname Origin Help!
I really need to find the origin of my surname "French", any help would be appreciated.
vote up1vote down


The obvious explanation is that it denotes someone of French origin, but this may not true in some cases.
The Frenches of Galway, in Ireland, are said to have been called "de Freyne" in earlier times. This is the French De La Freigne, denoting someone whose home was near an ash tree, or who lived at a place whose name meant "the Ash".
According to tradition the original de Freyne homeland was in South Leinster where the name is still found in the forms Freeney, Freyne and Frain. A branch that removed to Galway had their name changed to French. They later obtained estates in County Roscommon, where they gave the Barony of Frenchpark its name.
vote up1vote down
I realy would like help finding out the history behind the last name Goins
vote up1vote down
I've always wondered about the origins of this name as it seems to be purely American. Anyway your enquiry prompted me to find out and there's some interesting stuff on the net about Goins.
Apparently it started with a family named Gowan or Gowen, but I'm not sure that all bearers of the surname descend from this family.
Gowen/Gowen looks like it might derive from the Irish O'Gowan, which in Ireland has always been changed to Smith (the GOW part may mean "blacksmith"). Otherwise it might be from the Irish and Scots MacGowan.
A third possibility is that it's from the Breton (of France) GOUIN, which means "white". Le Gouin is a common Breton surname.
vote up1vote down