The McHales are historically exclusively located in north Co Mayo, Ireland. The name was originally McKeale and there are no genetic or familial connections to families such as the Hales (English/Welsh), the McCahills (Donegal), the O’Kellys (Mayo), the O’Healys (Sligo) or the McKeels (Ulster).
The name McKeale is most likely a shortened form of the ancient name for south Co Mayo, Conmaicnecuile.
Current research and test results show the McHales related to the O’Byrnes and migrated to south Co Mayo in the 13th century. To date, all McHales show descent from one common O’Byrne male ancestor in the Z255 haplogroup and haplotype BY17745. Results have been further refined and a genetic McHale family tree is under construction.
The ongoing aim is to further substantiate our common ancestry and to trace the different branches and their locations.
If you think you may be a genetic McHale, please contact Michael Brabazon, as above.