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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

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

Many Irish surnames come from the Gaelic language native to Ireland. The original Gaelic form of the name Moran is O Morain or O Moghrain, and is most likely derived from the word "mor" which means "big."


Within the archives researched, many different spelling variations of the surname Moran 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. Moran, O'Moran, Murrin, Murran and others.

First found in County Mayo (Irish: Maigh Eo) located on the West coast of the Republic of Ireland in the province of Connacht.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Moran research. Another 413 words(30 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Moran History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


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 Moran family in North America:

Moran Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Denis Moran, who settled in South Carolina in 1672

Moran Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Philip Moran, who landed in America in 1792
  • Amand Moran, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1795
  • Charles Moran, who arrived in New York in 1798

Moran Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Richard Moran, aged 22, arrived in New York in 1812
  • Nicholas Moran, aged 46, landed in New York in 1812
  • Damian Moran, who arrived in America in 1826
  • Noria Maria Moran, aged 44, arrived in New Orleans, La in 1829
  • Carlos Moran, aged 36, landed in New Orleans, La in 1831

Moran Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Daniel Moran, who landed in Canada in 1831
  • David Moran, who arrived in Canada in 1831
  • Owen Moran, who landed in Quebec in 1832
  • Ann Moran, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1832
  • George Moran, who came to Saint John, NB in 1833

Moran Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • James Moran, English convict from Chatham, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • Thomas Moran a coachsmith, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Navarino" in 1837
  • Patrick Moran arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Canton" in 1846
  • Ann Moran, aged 40, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Marshall Bennett,"
  • Mary Moran, aged 18, a laundry maid, arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Surge"

Moran Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Michael Moran, aged 35, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Maori" in 1864
  • Ann Moran, aged 24, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Maori" in 1864
  • Joseph Moran, aged 40, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Wild Duck" in 1873
  • Julia Moran, aged 36, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Wild Duck" in 1873
  • Joseph Moran, aged 11, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Wild Duck" in 1873


  • Daniel Keys Moran (b. 1962), American science fiction writer
  • Jason Moran (b. 1975), American jazz pianist
  • Robert Moran (b. 1937), renowned American composer of operas and ballets
  • Mary Nimmo Moran (1842-1899), prominent American 19th century landscape artist
  • Erin Marie Moran (b. 1960), American actress, best known for the role of Joanie Cunningham on Happy Days
  • Dolores Moran (1924-1982), American film actress and model
  • Thomas Moran (1837-1926), English-born, American painter and printmaker
  • Tim Moran (1918-2014), American educator and politician, Member of the Utah House of Representatives (1984-1996)
  • Colin Moran (b. 1980), Dublin Gaelic footballer
  • Kevin Moran (b. 1956), Irish footballer



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: Lucent in tenebris
Motto Translation: They shine in darkness.



  1. Kennedy, Patrick. Kennedy's Book of Arms. Canterbury: Achievements, 1967. Print.
  2. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
  3. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. 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. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  6. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  7. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
  8. Donovan, George Francis. The Pre-Revolutionary Irish in Massachusetts 1620-1775. Menasha, WI: Geroge Banta Publsihing Co., 1932. Print.
  9. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  10. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  11. ...

The Moran Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Moran 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 11 March 2015 at 13:53.

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