We are most pleased to introduce the Irish-American Sullivan family of northeast Ohio.
Compiled, edited and written by John (JC) and Edward G. Sullivan (Eadbhárd Ua Suileabhain)
A Journey of Body and Spirit
ALL true Sullivans are O'Sullivans, and ALL true O'Sullivans are Sullivans, unless, of course,
one possesses the surname without really being blood. What we mean is the O simply means grandson of.
The O is actually a Gaelic word by itself, "ua", not a contraction of the word of, or O'. Ua signifies descended from. .
The apostrophe was never there to begin with but the English transcribed it incorrectly, assuming it to have
been a contraction. For that reason we have used the form O Sullivan. Some families dropped the O.
Whatever the reason, you can re-assume the O if you so desire, and use it where and when you please,
for if you are not currently bearing the surname Sullivan you are an O. In ancient Gaelic writings the name is
spelled with one 'l'; the more usual form, however, in Gaelic and English, gives the 'll.'
The Sullivan name is spelled Ua Suileabhain (O'Sullivan) in Irish Gaelic. Family legend has us as originally
Celts from northern Spain. Our family has been in Ireland from the time before Christ. The Ua (mistaken for 'O' by English census takers)
before the name simply means 'descended from. Somewhere along the line our direct family dropped the O in the name.
In other words, our surname is really O'Sullivan. Throughout history and the world today you will always see the name
associated with safety forces, military, writing/publishing and the arts, to mention a few. We all possess a
s much of the Sullivan genes as anyone of the others bearing the name - we have been passed the same genetic code.
The same applies for the genetics all of our ancestors, regardless of the surname.
I received a shout out from a group of students that wanted to share this resource, check it out for them.
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