Seary History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Seary has changed considerably in the time that has passed since its genesis. It originally appeared in Gaelic as Mag Fhearadhaigh, derived from the word "fearadhach," possibly meaning "manly." [1]

Early Origins of the Seary family

The surname Seary was first found in Connacht (Irish: Connachta, (land of the) descendants of Conn), where they held a family seat from ancient times. [2]

Over in Devon, England, "The ' Domesday ' manor of Kari, in the parish of St. Giles-in-the-Heath, was the first recorded seat of the Gary family ; and one branch continued to reside there so late as the reign of Elizabeth. As early, however, as the reign of Richard II. it ceased to be their principal home. Sir William Gary then settled at Clovelly, and his brother Sir John, Chief Baron of the Exchequer, acquired, with many other manors, that of Cockington, only to lose them all by deciding for Richard against the Commissioners. His attainder was reversed in favour of his son Robert, who gained the favour of Henry V. by vanquishing an Aragonese knight in Smithfield. Two generations later the family were again in difficulty. Sir William Gary, grandson of Robert, was an ardent Lancastrian ; and one of those who, after the fatal battle of Tewkesbury, took refuge in the Abbey Church. Two days later the refugees were treacherously beheaded. The usual forfeiture followed; but Sir William's eldest son, Robert, obtained restoration from Henry VII. He was the ancestor of the present stock of Devonshire Carys. From his half-brother spring the ennobled Carys, represented by Lord Falkland." [3]

Early History of the Seary family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Seary research. Another 79 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1585, 1667 and 1668 are included under the topic Early Seary History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Seary Spelling Variations

Scribes and church officials, lacking today's standardized spelling rules, recorded names by how they were pronounced. This imprecise guide often led to the misleading result of one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname Seary are preserved in documents of the family history. The various spellings of the name that were found include Garry, Garrihy, Hare, O'Hare, O'Heihir, MacGarry and many more.

Early Notables of the Seary family (pre 1700)

Another 32 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Seary Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Seary migration to the United States +

A massive wave of Irish immigrants hit North America during the 19th century. Although many early Irish immigrants made a carefully planned decision to leave left Ireland for the promise of free land, by the 1840s immigrants were fleeing a famine stricken land in desperation. The condition of Ireland during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s can be attributed to a rapidly expanding population and English imperial policies. Those Irish families that arrived in North America were essential to its rapid social, industrial, and economic development. Passenger and immigration lists have revealed a number of early Irish immigrants bearing the name Seary:

Seary Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Seary, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682 [4]
Seary Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Seary, who landed in Indiana in 1852 [4]
  • Michael Seary, aged 22, who settled in America from County Tipperary, in 1892
  • W. H. Seary, aged 40, who immigrated to the United States from Liverpool, in 1892
  • Mary Seary, aged 19, who landed in America, in 1895
Seary Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Nora Seary, aged 20, who landed in America from Castersland, in 1903
  • Ernest Seary, aged 25, who landed in America from Sheffield, England, in 1907
  • John Seary, aged 32, who immigrated to the United States from Tullamore, Ireland, in 1909
  • Edward Seary, aged 36, who immigrated to the United States from Virginia, Ireland, in 1912
  • Earle Norbury Seary, aged 23, who settled in America from London, England, in 1913
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Seary migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Seary Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Charles Seary, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Jane Seary, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Margaret Seary, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Sarah Seary, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750

New Zealand Seary migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Seary Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Timothy Seary, aged 21, a farm labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Strathnaver" in 1874

Contemporary Notables of the name Seary (post 1700) +

  • Edgar Ronald Seary (1908-1984), English-born, Newfoundland educator and author, best known for his book Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland


The Seary Motto +

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: Fear garbh ar mait
Motto Translation: Here is a good rough man.


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  3. ^ Worth, R.N., A History of Devonshire London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, E.G., 1895. Digital
  4. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)


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