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

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

The many Irish surnames in use today have long rich histories behind them. The name Hanrahan originally appeared in Gaelic as O hAnrachain, which may be a variant of O hAnradhain, which is derived from the word anradh, which means warrior.

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One explanation for the many variations is that scribes and church officials frequently spelled the name as it sounded: an imprecise method at best. Understandably then, various spellings of the surname Hanrahan were found in the many archives researched. These included Hanrahan, O'Hanrahan, Hanraghan and others.

First found in Leinster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hanrahan research. Another 196 words(14 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hanrahan History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Hanrahan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Suffering from poverty and racial discrimination, thousands of Irish families left the island in the 19th century for North America aboard cramped passenger ships. The early migrants became settlers of small tracts of land, and those that came later were often employed in the new cities or transitional work camps. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Although the immigrants from this period were often maligned when they arrived in the United States, they provided the cheap labor that was necessary for the development of that country as an industrial power. Early immigration and passenger lists have revealed many immigrants bearing the name Hanrahan:

Hanrahan Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Margaret Hanrahan, an indentured individual on record in Pennsylvania in 1772

Hanrahan Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • James Hanrahan, naturalized in New York in 1802
  • John Hanrahan, on record in North Carolina in 1812
  • Ellen Hanrahan, who came to Vermont in 1818
  • James Hanrahan, who came to Philadelphia in 1839
  • Catherine Hanrahan, who arrived in New York in 1851


Hanrahan Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Daniel Hanrahan, aged 18, who settled in America from Feakle, Ireland, in 1904
  • Edward Hanrahan, aged 58, who emigrated to the United States from Dublin, in 1904
  • Cornelius Hanrahan, aged 27, who emigrated to the United States from Listowel, Ireland, in 1906
  • Alice Hanrahan, aged 20, who settled in America from Belfast, in 1906
  • Ellen Hanrahan, aged 51, who settled in America from Limerick, Ireland, in 1907


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  • Robert Paul Hanrahan (b. 1934), American politician, member of the U.S. Congress from Illinois
  • William A. "Bill" Hanrahan (1918-1996), American radio and television announcer, the Voice of NBC News
  • Jack Hanrahan (1933-2008), American Emmy Award-winning comedy writer for his work on Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In
  • Kieran Hanrahan (b. 1957), Irish radio host and musician
  • Joe Hanrahan (b. 1964), Irish former footballer
  • Maura Hanrahan (b. 1963), Canadian writer, anthropologist, and painter
  • Brian Hanrahan (1949-2010), English BBC news correspondent
  • Hugh F. Hanrahan (1947-1999), Canadian politician, member of the Canadian House of Commons
  • Robert James Hanrahan (b. 1969), Australian musician and composer
  • Raymond Allan "Ray" Hanrahan (b. 1952), former Australian politician

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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: An uachtar
Motto Translation: The champion.

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  1. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  3. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  4. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  5. 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).
  6. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  7. 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.
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  10. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
  11. ...

The Hanrahan Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Hanrahan 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 30 March 2014 at 16:12.

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