An Irish surname, Mooney comes from the Gaelic term ‘maoin’ which referred to having great wealth and a descendent of a wealthy family. The spelling variations for Mooney include Meaney, Moonie, O’Mooney, Moon, O’Moony, Meeny, O’Mainy and Money. In Ireland the Mooney family name originated in County Leix and County Offaly in the center of the country. In the 19th century many families with the Mooney surname resettled to Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States. In England the Mooney surname is scattered across the country. The counties of Yorkshire, Lancashire, Cheshire and the city of London have the greater Mooney populations. In Scotland most with the Mooney family name lived in the central region and into Renfrewshire and Lanarkshire counties. Within the United States the earliest Mooney families settled in Virginia, Maryland, Rhode Island and South Carolina. Famous: Debra Mooney (actress), Paul Mooney (writer, comic and actor), Albert W. Mooney (co-founder of Mooney Aircraft Company), Brian Mooney (professional football player), Beryl “Bel” Ann Mooney (English journalist), Hercules Mooney (Lieutenant Colonel in the American Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War), John Mooney (champion cricket player for Ireland), Tommy Mooney (professional football player), Walter E. Mooney (daredevil pilot and model aircraft designer) and Malcolm Mooney (singer and poet).