The O'Brien Clan Chapters
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

Here is a brief explanation of some of the questions you may have about The O'Brien Clan Chapters.  For more specific questions, contact the Webmaster, The O'Brien Clan.

What is an O'Brien Clan Chapter?

An O'Brien Clan Chapter is designed to represent a specific area anywhere in the world.  It allows people to get together or work together to help any and all O'Briens, including the many variations of the name and O'Brien descendents, in their area.  The Chapter is also designed to allow other O'Briens, including the many variations of the name and O'Brien descendents, to do family research within the area.   Depending on the size of the area, a Chapter may include a whole country (like Ireland, New Zealand or Peru), a State (like California or Vermont) or a Province (like Quebec or British Columbia).   Within each of these areas are Counties, Regions or Territories.  Volunteers for these different areas will be utilized in assisting those researching O'Brien genealogy within that area only.  This helps cut down the number of inquiries a person may receive in that area.

Who may join an O'Brien Clan Chapter?

Anyone with the name of O'Brien or one of its many variations and descendents of O'Briens are already members of The O'Brien Clan.  By designating which area they are in, will determine which Chapter they should belong to.  We just need to find them.

How do I find members for a Chapter?

There are many ways to find members.

  • A local telephone book will list a number of O'Briens (and variations) that may be contacted.
  • A tent at festivals.
  • A Chapter webpage will find some.
  • I have an O'Brien Coat of Arms patch on my baseball hat and I have been stopped by many people either looking for O'Briens or information about Irish heritage.
  • My wife and daughter have a sweatshirt with the O'Brien Coat of Arms on it.  They have been stopped many times by people looking for O'Briens or information about Irish heritage.  My wife now has a Tote bag with the O'Brien Coat of Arms on it and she has been stopped several times.
  • Clan O'Brien Services ( has these items available.  10% of their sales of O'Brien coat of arms items go to the O'Brien Clan foundation.
  • Your ideas are only limited by the drive of your Chapter.

How does a Chapter support The O'Brien Clan Foundation?

All support for The O'Brien Clan Foundation is strictly voluntary.  Those who wish to make voluntary donations to the Foundation may do so here.  We are not proposing that everyone go out and raise money for the Foundation.  The Foundation will be providing grants, scholarships, etc., to those deserving O'Briens throughout the world.   Nominations for these grants will come from the Chapters.   Example:  If you have a child in high school, looking forward to college, you will probably be looking for a grant or aid to help with college funding.  If your child has excellent grades (based on Foundation requirements) and is pursuing an educational career  listed by the Foundation, the Chapter may nominate the individual to the Foundation for consideration.

Why does a Chapter need a web page?

Because of the increasing use of the internet by thousands of people doing family research, a Chapter website would be most useful to O'Briens, the many variations of the name and descendents.  We can help others get to the area they are researching and hopefully aid them in their pursuit of family research.  They can also find lots of information about their heritage and Ireland.  These websites will be built on a global scale so anyone can go anywhere and find help.  We will be O'Briens helping O'Briens.  By narrowing our support to only O'Briens, variations and descendents, people will not get swamped with requests for assistance and will be able to do a more effective job in helping people with research.  Do not worry about being overwhelmed with requests.  I have volunteered for the State of California and the County of Monterey. In the last six months I have received '0' requests for information.   It may take some time before requests start.  By setting up Chapters all over now, we will be ready to assist them when the time comes.  For those who do not know how to build a webpage, do not despair.  Most all of the webpages have already been built for every area.  To personalize your Chapter webpage, I recommend 'HTML for Dummies' and 'Internet for Dummies'.  I started with these two books and you can see what I have managed to produce.  Any and all the help you need will be available from the Webmaster and any one else who can help.

What activities does a Chapter perform?

There can be many activities that a Chapter can perform.

  • Get together breakfasts to get acquainted.  The Vermont Chapter #2 had a great breakfast in Nov 1999 and a good time was had by all.
  • Festivals happen all over the place.  Very few Irish tents show up at these festivals.  If you see an Irish tent, join them and let everyone know you are an O'Brien.  You may be surprised at their response.  Your Chapter may get together and have their own tent.   My experience at festivals shows that there are a lot of Irish out there looking for information and we can be there to provide it to them.
  • Picnics.
  • Trips.
  • Nominations to the Foundation.
  • Fund raisers for the Foundation or any other restoration projects ongoing such as 'The Dromoland Turret Restoration Project'.
  • Find relatives and make new friends.
  • The list could be endless.