Coughlan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Coughlan has undergone many variations in the time that has passed since its genesis. In Gaelic it appeared as Mac Cochlain or O Cochlain.

Early Origins of the Coughlan family

The surname Coughlan was first found in Munster where Dealbha, brother of King Blad of Munster, is the traditional ancestor of this family. There were two different septs which have become known as Coughlan: the MacCoughlans, who dwelled in the barony of Garrycastle in Offaly, and the O'Coughlans, who lived in the baronies of Carbery and Ballymore in Cork. In Cork, they occupied the territories known as the baronies of Carbery and Ballymore. The MacCoughlans were the more important of the two septs until they dissolved and scattered during the 18th century. They were a Dalcassian sept, and their chief was referred to as Chief of Delvin MacCoughlan. In 1858, they were still recorded as landlords at Cloghan, near Banagher, but they vanished within fifty years. However, the O'Coughlans, who were recorded in large numbers at the time of the 1659 census, still continue to be numerous in those territories. This census shows the prefix O to have been largely discarded by that time. The MacCoghlans lost most of their extensive territories during the Anglo Norman invasion of Ireland by Strongbow in 1172, and lost even more during the Cromwellian Invasion in 1641.

Early History of the Coughlan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Coughlan research. Another 77 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 159 and 1590 are included under the topic Early Coughlan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Coughlan Spelling Variations

The recording of names in Ireland in the Middle Ages was an inconsistent endeavor at best. The standardized literary languages of today were not yet reached the general citizenry. Research into the name Coughlan revealed spelling variations, including Coghlan, Coughlan, MacCoughlan, McCoughlan, Coglan, Couglan, Coughlin and many more.

Early Notables of the Coughlan family (pre 1700)

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

Coughlan Ranking

In the United States, the name Coughlan is the 17,818th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1]


United States Coughlan migration to the United States +

Irish families fled the English-colonized Ireland in record numbers during the 19th century for North America. Many of those destitute families died from disease during, and even shortly after, the long journey. Although those that immigrated before the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s often were granted a tract of land, those that arrived later were generally accommodated in urban centers or in work camps. Those in the urban centers would labor in the manufacturing sector, whereas those in work camps would to build critical infrastructures such as bridges, canals, roads, and railways. Regardless of when these Irish immigrants came to North America, they were critical for the rapid development of the young nations of the United States and Canada. Early immigration and passenger lists have recorded many early immigrants bearing the name of Coughlan:

Coughlan Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Honor Coughlan, who arrived in Maryland in 1678 [2]
  • John Coughlan, who arrived in Maryland in 1679 [2]
Coughlan Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Elinor Coughlan, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1746 [2]
Coughlan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Cornelius Coughlan, who landed in America in 1801 [2]
  • James Coughlan, who landed in New York, NY in 1815 [2]
  • Thomas Coughlan, who arrived in New York in 1834 [2]
  • Patrick Coughlan, who arrived in New York in 1842 [2]
  • Ellen Coughlan, who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1849
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Coughlan migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Coughlan Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
Coughlan Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Richard Coughlan, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1833
  • Mr. Batherolomew Coughlan, aged 2 years and 6 months who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Wakefield" departing from the port of Cork, Ireland but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [4]
  • Ms. Catherine Coughlan, aged 20 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Sir Henry Pottinger" departing from the port of Cork, Ireland but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [4]
  • Miss. Catherine Coughlan who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Achilles" departing from the port of Liverpool, England but died on Grosse Isle in 1847 [4]
  • Mr. Jeremiah Coughlan, aged 25 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "James Moran" departing from the port of Liverpool, England but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Coughlan migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Coughlan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss Catherine Coughlan, (b. 1783), aged 30, Irish convict who was convicted in Dublin, Ireland for 7 years, transported aboard the "Catherine" on 8th December 1813, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [5]
  • John Coughlan, a tailor, who arrived in New South Wales, Australia sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • Mr. John Coughlan, (b. 1818), aged 20, Irish labourer who was convicted in County Offlay (Kings County), Ireland for life, transported aboard the "Elphinstone" on 29th December 1838, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Mr. Patrick Coughlan, (b. 1823), aged 15, Irish shoe maker who was convicted in County Offlay (Kings County), Ireland for life, transported aboard the "Elphinstone" on 29th December 1838, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Patrick Coughlan, aged 32, a herdsman, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Sir Edward Parry" [7]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Coughlan 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:

Coughlan Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Micheal Coughlan, aged 23, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Eveline" in 1865 [8]
  • Lawrence Coughlan, aged 21, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oxford" in 1874
  • Patrick Coughlan, aged 30, a farmer, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Adamant" in 1874 [9]
  • James Coughlan, aged 27, a painter, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Dilharree" in 1875
  • Anne Coughlan, aged 23, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Dilharree" in 1875
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Coughlan (post 1700) +

  • Marisa Christine Coughlan (b. 1974), American actress, known for her work on Teaching Mrs. Tingle (1999), Super Troopers (2001) and the series Boston Legal
  • John Robert Coughlan, American author
  • Tony Coughlan, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from California, 2008 [10]
  • Harry O. Coughlan, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from New Jersey, 1932 [10]
  • Frank T. Coughlan, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Ohio, 1912 [10]
  • Richard J. "Richie" Coughlan (b. 1974), Irish professional golfer who played on the European Tour and the PGA Tour
  • Graham Coughlan (b. 1974), Irish professional football manager and former player who played 461 matches as a centre back (1994-2013)
  • Nicola Mary Coughlan (b. 1987), Irish actress, known for her roles as Clare Devlin in the Channel 4 sitcom Derry Girls (2018–2022) and Penelope Featherington in the Netflix period drama Bridgerton (2020–present)
  • Cathal Coughlan (1960-2022), Irish singer and songwriter from Cork, best known as the frontman of the band Microdisney, founded in 1980
  • John Coughlan (1898-1965), Irish sportsman
  • ... (Another 16 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Jeremiah Daniel Coughlan, British Petty Officer Stoker, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking [11]
RMS Lusitania
  • Master Jeremiah Bernard Coughlan, American 3rd Class passenger from Butte, Montana, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [12]
  • Master John Coughlan Jr., American 3rd Class passenger from Butte, Montana, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [12]
  • Mrs. Katherine Coughlan, American 3rd Class passenger from Butte, Montana, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [12]
  • Miss Margaret Coughlan, American 3rd Class passenger from Butte, Montana, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking and was recovered [12]
  • Mr. John J. Coughlan, American 3rd Class passenger from Butte, Montana, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [12]


The Coughlan 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: Fortis in arduis
Motto Translation: Brave in difficulties.


  1. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  4. ^ Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 21)
  5. ^ Convict Records of Australia (Retreived 2nd January 2021, retreived from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/catherine
  6. ^ Convict Records Australia (Retrieved on 18th March 2022, (retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/elphinstone)
  7. ^ South Australian Register Monday 27th March 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Sir Edward Parry 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/siredwardparry1854.shtml
  8. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 4th November 2011). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  9. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  10. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 16) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  11. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  12. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/


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