Ahearne History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

Many Irish surnames can be traced back to their Gaelic forms. The name Ahearne originally appeared in Gaelic as O hEachthigheirn or O hEachthigheirna, made up of the words "each" meaning "steed," and "thighearna," meaning "lord." This was first Anglicized O'Hagherin, which was later changed to O'Aherne before the prefix was eventually dropped. [1]

Early Origins of the Ahearne family

The surname Ahearne was first found in County Clare (Irish: An Clár) located on the west coast of Ireland in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat as a Dalcassian sept from before the year 1000. However, with the disruptions of the Strongbow Invasion of 1172, they migrated southward to counties Cork and Waterford. In Waterford the name is predominantly Hearn and Hearne.

Important Dates for the Ahearne family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ahearne research. Another 116 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1420, 1566, 1754, 1769, 1797, and 1806 are included under the topic Early Ahearne History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ahearne Spelling Variations

Irish names recorded during the Middle Ages are characterized by many spelling variations. This preponderance of variations for common names can be explained by the fact that the scribes and church officials that kept records during that period individually decided how to capture one's name. These recorders primarily based their decisions on how the name was pronounced or what it meant. Research into the name Ahearne revealed many variations, including O'Aherne, O'Ahern, Hearne, O'Heffron, Haveran, Hayveren and many more.

Early Notables of the Ahearne family (pre 1700)

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

Ahearne migration to Canada

Irish immigrants began to leave the English-controlled Ireland in sizable numbers during the late 18th century. Many of these Irish immigrated to British North America or the United States in the hopes of gaining their own tract of farmland. This pattern of migration grew steadily until the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine caused a great exodus of immigrants to North America. These immigrants differed from their predecessors in that they were desperately fleeing the disease and starvation that plagued their homeland, and many were entirely destitute when they arrived in North America. Although these penniless immigrants were not warmly welcomed when they arrived, they were critical to the rapid development of the United States and what would become known as Canada. Many went to populate the western frontiers and others provided the cheap labor the new manufacturing sector and the building of bridges, roads, railways, and canals required. A thorough examination of immigration and passenger lists has revealed some of the earliest people to arrive in North America with name Ahearne or one of its variants:

Ahearne Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Ahearne, aged 24, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1837 aboard the barque "Robert Watt" from Cork, Ireland
  • Judy Ahearne, aged 21, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1837 aboard the barque "Robert Watt" from Cork, Ireland

Contemporary Notables of the name Ahearne (post 1700)

  • John Francis "Bunny" Ahearne (1900-1985), Irish promoter for ice hockey in Great Britain, President of the IIHF (1957-1960), (1963-1966) and (1969-1975), inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1977, eponym of the Ahearne Cup
  • Joe Ahearne (b. 1963), British BAFTA and Hugo Award nominated television writer and director, known for his work on Trance (2013), Space Odyssey: Voyage to the Planets (2004) and Perfect Parents (2006)

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Citations

  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
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