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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Where did the Irish Dougherty family come from? What is the Irish Dougherty family crest and coat of arms? When did the Dougherty family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Dougherty family history?

The original Gaelic versions of today's Irish names demonstrate a proud, ancient past. The original Gaelic form of the name Dougherty is O Dochartaigh, from the word "dochartach," which means hurtful or obstructive and in this case, it would be termed as a nickname.

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Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname Dougherty were found. These included One reason for the many variations is that scribes and church officials often spelled an individual's name as it sounded. This imprecise method often led to many versions. Dockeray, Dockerty, Dockharty, Dogherty, Dougharty, Dougherty, Doherty, Doherety, Dohertey, Docherty, Docharty, MacDevitt and many more.

First found in at Inishowen, in the barony of Raphoe, in County Donegal, where they were a large and influential sept, and were kin to the O'Donnells. They were one of the principal Irish clans to resist the Norman invasion of 1170 and were known as the Lords of Innishowen directly descended from the distinguished Irish General King Niall of the Nine Hostages, who was descended from the Heremon line of Irish Kings. The MacDevitts, who exist in large numbers in Inishowen, are descended from David O'Doherty, a chief of Cinel Conaill who was killed in 1208. Some members of the MacDevitt branch migrated to the territory of Oriel, now counties Louth, Monaghan, and south Down. There the "D" was aspirated creating the early Anglicization MacCaveat, and then the variation MacKevitt. Expanding their territory, they came to rule the peninsula of Inishowen in the 14th century. However, the poorly-timed and disastrous rebellion led by Sir Cahir O'Dougherty in 1608, drastically reduced the power of the once powerful sept.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dougherty research. Another 269 words(19 lines of text) covering the years 1208, 1783, 1587, 1608, 1608, 1783 and 1850 are included under the topic Early Dougherty History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 33 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dougherty Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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During the 19th century thousands of impoverished Irish families made the long journey to British North America and the United States. These people were leaving a land that had become beset with poverty, lack of opportunity, and hunger. In North America, they hoped to find land, work, and political and religious freedoms. Although the majority of the immigrants that survived the long sea passage did make these discoveries, it was not without much perseverance and hard work: by the mid-19th century land suitable for agriculture was short supply, especially in British North America, in the east; the work available was generally low paying and physically taxing construction or factory work; and the English stereotypes concerning the Irish, although less frequent and vehement, were, nevertheless, present in the land of freedom, liberty, and equality for all men. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Research into passenger and immigration lists has brought forth evidence of the early members of the Dougherty family in North America:

Dougherty Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • David Dougherty, who landed in America in 1793
  • Edward Dougherty, who arrived in America in 1795
  • Anthony Dougherty, who landed in America in 1797

Dougherty Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Joseph Dougherty, who landed in America in 1801
  • Neal Dougherty, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Chas Dougherty, aged 23, arrived in New York, NY in 1803
  • Darby Dougherty, aged 25, arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Cons Dougherty, aged 20, arrived in New York, NY in 1803


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  • Paul Dougherty, American painter of New England landscapes
  • Michael Dougherty, American screenwriter
  • Patrick Dougherty (b. 1948), American Democratic politician
  • Richard "Dick" Dougherty (b. 1932), American retired ice hockey player who led the United States to a silver medal at the 1956 Winter Olympics
  • Charles Dougherty (1801-1853), American lawyer, jurist, and politician
  • Major-General Sir Ivan Noel Dougherty (1907-1998), Australian General Officer Commanding 2nd Division Commonwealth Military Force, Korea from 1952 to 1954


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  • History of the Daugherty (also Dougherty) Family in America by Jackson Temple.
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Ar Ndutcas
Motto Translation: Our heritage

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  1. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
  2. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  3. Somerset Fry, Peter and Fiona Somerset Fry. A History of Ireland. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1993. Print. (ISBN 1-56619-215-3).
  4. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. Print.
  5. Grehan, Ida. Dictionary of Irish Family Names. Boulder: Roberts Rinehart, 1997. Print. (ISBN 1-57098-137-X).
  6. O'Hart, John. Irish Pedigress 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4).
  7. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  8. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  10. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  11. ...

The Dougherty Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Dougherty Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 7 September 2014 at 19:24.

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