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The surname is one of the native Irish surnames that come from the Irish Gaelic language. The original Gaelic form of the name Mcgahey is "Mac Eachaidh," from the personal name Eachaidh, which is Anglicized as Aghy. It is cognate with Eochaigh, which is Anglicized as the once-common Christian name Oghy.

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The surname Mcgahey was first found in the county of Cork (Irish: Corcaigh) the ancient Kingdom of Deis Muin (Desmond), located on the southwest coast of Ireland in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Irish names were rarely spelled consistently in the Middle Ages. Spelling variations of the name Mcgahey dating from that time include Caughey, McCaughey, McGaughey, Coffee, Coffey, Coffy, O'Coffey, O'Coffy, Mulcahy, McGahey and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mcgahey research. Another 218 words (16 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mcgahey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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More information is included under the topic Early Mcgahey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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To escape the religious and political discrimination they experienced primarily at the hands of the English, thousands of Irish left their homeland in the 19th century. These migrants typically settled in communities throughout the East Coast of North America, but also joined the wagon trains moving out to the Midwest. Ironically, when the American War of Independence began, many Irish settlers took the side of England, and at the war's conclusion moved north to Canada. These United Empire Loyalists, were granted land along the St. Lawrence River and the Niagara Peninsula. Other Irish immigrants settled in Newfoundland, the Ottawa Valley, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The greatest influx of Irish immigrants, however, came to North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Thousands left Ireland at this time for North America and Australia. Many of those numbers, however, did not live through the long sea passage. These Irish settlers to North America were immediately put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. Irish settlers made an inestimable contribution to the building of the New World. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the Irish name Mcgahey or a variant listed above, including:

Mcgahey Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • John McGahey, aged 30, landed in New York in 1812
  • Owen McGahey, aged 35, arrived in New York in 1812
  • Patrick McGahey, aged 30, arrived in New York in 1812
  • William McGahey arrived in Philadelphia in 1857
  • Ellen McGahey, aged 18, who arrived in America, in 1893
  • ...

Mcgahey Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Henrietta McGahey, aged 43, who arrived in America from County Antrim, Ireland, in 1900
  • William McGahey, aged 27, who arrived in America from England, in 1900
  • Mary McGahey, aged 22, who arrived in America from County Tyrone, Ireland, in 1905
  • Mary Jane McGahey, aged 30, who arrived in America from Knoch, County Down, Ireland, in 1906
  • Mary McGahey, aged 10, who arrived in America, in 1906
  • ...

Mcgahey Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • John McGahey, aged 23, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Ellen McGahey, aged 20, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Margaret McGahey, aged 22, a widow, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast, Ireland
  • John McGahey, aged 20, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Ranger" in 1834

Mcgahey Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Eliza McGahey, aged 22, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Thomas Arbuthnot"
  • Sarah McGahey, aged 20, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Thomas Arbuthnot"

Mcgahey Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Felix McGahey, aged 19, a labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waipa" in 1876
  • Mary McGahey, aged 17, a servant, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waipa" in 1876
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  • Jeanne McGahey (d. 1996), American poet
  • Kathleen McGahey (1960-1984), American bronze medalist field hockey player at the 1984 Summer Olympics
  • John P. McGahey, American Democrat politician, Candidate in primary for Michigan State Senate 5th District, 1970
  • Harrison McGahey (b. 1995), English football defender for Sheffield United
  • Michael "Mick" McGahey (1925-1999), Scottish trade unionist miner
  • Charles Percy "Charlie" McGahey (1871-1935), English cricketer from Whipps Cross, Leytonstone, Essex
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Citations



    Other References

    1. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
    2. 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.
    3. Read, Charles Anderson. The Cabinet of Irish Literature Selections from the Works of the Chief Poets, Orators and Prose Writers of Ireland 4 Volumes. London: Blackie and Son, 1884. Print.
    4. MacLysaght, Edward. Mores Irish Familes. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0).
    5. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
    6. 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).
    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. Sullivan, Sir Edward. The Book of Kells 3rd Edition. New York: Crescent Books, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-517-61987-3).
    9. MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland 3rd Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1978. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2278-0).
    10. Kennedy, Patrick. Kennedy's Book of Arms. Canterbury: Achievements, 1967. Print.
    11. ...


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