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

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

The original Gaelic form of the Geoghegan surname is Mag Eochagain, a patronymic derived from the personal name Eochaidh.

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Names written in official documents were generally spelt as they sounded, leading to the problem of one name being recorded under several different variations, creating the illusion in records of more than one person. Among the many spelling variations of the surname Geoghegan that are preserved in documents of the family history are Geoghegan, Gagahan, Gahagan, Gahaghan, Gaghan, Gegan, MacGeoghegan, Geohan and many more.

First found in the county of Westmeath (Irish: An Iarmhí) in the Irish Midlands, province of Leinster, in the barony of Moycashel at Kilbeggan where they held a family seat from ancient times. Traditionally, the Geoghegans are said to descend from Fiacha, son of Niall of the Nine Hostages.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Geoghegan research. Another 465 words(33 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1186, 1291, 1580, 1600, 1603, 1650, 1689, 1702, 1763, and 1800 are included under the topic Early Geoghegan History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 56 words(4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Geoghegan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Irish families began to immigrate to British North America and the United States in the 18th century, but the greatest influx of Irish immigrants came during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. The earlier settlers came to North America after a great deal of consideration and by paying relatively high fees for their passage. These settlers were primarily drawn by the promise of land. Those later settlers that came during the 1840's were trying to escape the conditions of poverty, starvation, disease, and death that had stricken Ireland. Due to the enormity of their numbers and the late date of their arrival, these immigrants primarily became hired laborers instead of homesteading settlers like their predecessors. An exhaustive search of immigration and passenger lists has revealed many Irish immigrants North America bearing the name Geoghegan:

Geoghegan Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Michael Geoghegan, a Scotch-Irish who arrived in Boston in 1737
  • Edward Geoghegan, who came to Philadelphia in 1741
  • Edward Geoghegan, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1745

Geoghegan Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • William Geoghegan, who arrived in America in 1811
  • Murtoch Geoghegan, who came to Philadelphia in 1815
  • Henry Geoghegan, who landed in New York, NY in 1815
  • Murtoch Geoghegan, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815
  • William Geoghegan, who settled in Louisiana in 1845


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  • William Geoghegan (b. 1827), Irish born American poet and journalist, who arrived in the United States in 1844
  • Thomas Geoghegan (b. 1949), American labor lawyer and politician
  • Arthur Gerald Geoghegan (1810-1889), noted Irish poet
  • John Geoghegan (b. 1956), English footballer


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  1. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  2. Somerset Fry, Peter and Fiona Somerset Fry. A History of Ireland. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1993. Print. (ISBN 1-56619-215-3).
  3. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  4. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  5. Harris, Ruth-Ann and B. Emer O'Keefe. The Search for Missing Friends Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in the Boston Pilot Volume II 1851-1853. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1991. Print.
  6. Woulfe, Rev. Patrick. Irish Names and Surnames Collected and Edited with Explanatory and Historical Notes. Kansas City: Genealogical Foundation, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-940134-403).
  7. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  8. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  10. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  11. ...

The Geoghegan Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Geoghegan 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 6 October 2014 at 14:02.

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