Galligan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Many Irish names are merely English translations of Gaelic names. The name Galligan was a translation of the Gaelic name Mac Giollagain, which is derived from the word "giolla," which means "lad."
Early Origins of the Galligan family
The surname Galligan was first found in County Londonderry (Irish: Doire), a Northern Irish county also known as Derry, in the province of Ulster, where they held a family seat at a place called Magilligans Strand.
Early History of the Galligan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Galligan research. Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Galligan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Galligan Spelling Variations
Many different spelling variations of the surname Galligan exist in the archives researched. Ancient scribes and church officials recorded names as they were pronounced, often resulting in a single person being recorded under several different spellings. Different spellings that were found include Gilligan, Gilegan, Gillegan, Giligan and others.
Early Notables of the Galligan family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Galligan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In the United States, the name Galligan is the 9,336th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. 
| Galligan migration to the United States ||+|
During the middle of the 19th century, Irish families often experienced extreme poverty and racial discrimination in their own homeland under English rule. Record numbers died of disease and starvation, and many others, deciding against such a fate, boarded ships bound for North America. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Unfortunately, many of those Irish that arrived in Canada or the United States still experienced economic and racial discrimination. Although often maligned, these Irish people were essential to the rapid development of these countries because they provided the cheap labor required for the many canals, roads, railways, and other projects required for strong national infrastructures. Eventually the Irish went on to make contributions in the less backbreaking and more intellectual arenas of commerce, education, and the arts. Research early immigration and passenger lists revealed many early immigrants bearing the name Galligan:
Galligan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Ann Galligan, aged 32, who settled in America, in 1894
Galligan Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Andrew Galligan, aged 34, who landed in America from Cavan, in 1900
- Bernard Galligan, aged 25, who immigrated to America from Ballinagh, Ireland, in 1907
- Anne Galligan, aged 7, who landed in America from Oldcastle, Ireland, in 1908
- Annie Galligan, aged 25, who immigrated to the United States from Newtown, Ireland, in 1910
- Annie Galligan, aged 20, who immigrated to the United States from Gavan, Ireland, in 1914
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
| Galligan migration to Canada ||+|
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Galligan Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
- Mr. Michael Galligan, aged 8 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Virgilia" departing from the port of Liverpool, England but died on Grosse Isle in September 1847 
| Galligan migration to Australia ||+|
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Galligan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- Mary Galligan, aged 24, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1859 aboard the ship "Lady Ann"
| Galligan 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:
Galligan Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- James Galligan, aged 48, a farmer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Woodlark" in 1874
- Susan Galligan, aged 33, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Woodlark" in 1874
- Mary J. Galligan, aged 1, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Woodlark" in 1874
- Charles J. Galligan, aged 3 months, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Woodlark" in 1874
|Contemporary Notables of the name Galligan (post 1700) ||+|
- Zachary Wolfe "Zach" Galligan (b. 1964), American actor, known for his roles in Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990), Gremlins (1984) and Waxwork (1988)
- M. Devin Galligan (d. 2003), founder of the charitable organization "Strain the Brain"
- John T. Galligan (1865-1937), American professional baseball player
- Thomas C. Galligan Jr, American academic, 8th President of Colby-Sawyer College
- Thomas R. Galligan (b. 1947), American politician who served as mayor of Jeffersonville, Indiana USA (1996 to 2003)
- William "Billy" Galligan (1937-2023), Irish hurler who played from 1955 to 1975
- Peter Paul Galligan (1888-1966), Irish Sinn Féin politician
|Historic Events for the Galligan family ||+|
- Miss Margaret Galligan, Irish 2nd Class passenger residing in New York, New York, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania (1915) and survived the sinking