The name Cannon is
distributed throughout most of Ireland's counties but is most
apparent in the counties of Donegal, Leitrim and Mayo.
Ui Canannain was the ancestral name of the Cannons and
TirConnel (all of Co. Donegal and part of County Derry) was
the "Land of the Cannons".
By the early 1600's the name of Ui Canannain had been
anglicised to O'Cannon. Further anglicisation took place
during the Penal Laws in the late 1700's and early 1800's and
the name in Co. Donegal became Cannon. However in the east of
the county and in the neighbouring counties of Derry and
Tyrone the name, being spelt phonetically, became Canning.
O'Cannon, Cannon, Cannan, Canon, Canning are anglicised
versions of the name Ui Canannain.
The Cannons are descended from two of Ireland's most renowned
Kings: Conn of the Hundred Battles and Niall of the Nine
Hostages. The O'Cannons have been described as "Ancient
Princes of TirConnel" and "Valiant Chiefs" However their 350
year dynasty in TirConnel ended around 1250.