Recorded as McNirlan, McNerlin, McNirlin, and posssibly others, this is believed to be a Gaelic surname of Irish origins. We say Irish because it is in Ulster and specifically Derry that we have identified the recordings, but not anywhere else in the country. This may suggest that the name originates from Scotland, but if so we have not been able to identify it in any spelling. Usually we can identify the name but then not be able to find qualifying recordings, but in this case we have the reverse.The surname is not recorded in any of the dictonaries, nor surprisingly is there another name whose spelling may provide a link unless it be McErlean, meaning 'The son of the learned man' whose clan origins were also in Derryl. The recordings that we have identified include Alexander McNirlin and his wife the former Margaret Devenny at Ballykelly, on January 25th 1865 and Daniel McNerlin and his wife the former Frances Kane, at Articlave, on November 18th 1865.
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