The Irish surname Nolan is an anglicized form of the Gaelic name Ó Nualláin meaning “descendant of Nuallán,” a personal name representing a diminutive of nuall meaning “famous, or noble.” The first chief of the Nolan clan held the hereditary office of herald to the Kings of Leinster. The Nolan clan lost most of their holdings after the Battle of the Boyne in 1690 when they supported James II, (1689 - 1690), the last king of Ireland. A branch of the family migrated to Connacht in the 16th Century and gained possession of extensive land tracts in Counties Galway and Mayo. A smaller branch settled in Corca Laoidh (South-West Cork) and here the name appeared as O'Huallachain meaning "proud" or "noble". Today there are approximately 45,000 people with the last name Nolan living in The United States.
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