Gearey History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Irish surnames are linked to the long Gaelic heritage of the Island nation. The original Gaelic form of the name Gearey is "O Gadhra," which is derived from the word "gadhar," which means "dog."

Early Origins of the Gearey family

The surname Gearey was first found in County Sligo (Irish: Sligeach), in the province of Connacht in Northwestern Ireland, where they were Chiefs of Coolavin aad Sliabh Lugha. [1] The surname also spelled Gara, O'Gara, and Gerry is descended from Tiachleach, Lord of South Leyney who was killed in 946 A.D. The Geary family was closely associated with the O'Haras from an early time and the chiefs of the two septs alternated as rulers of Luighne. [2]

Important Dates for the Gearey family

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

Gearey Spelling Variations

Within archives, many different spelling variations exist for the surname Gearey. Ancient scribes and church officials recorded names as they were pronounced, often resulting in the name of the single person being recorded under several different spellings. Different spellings that were found include Geary, Gara, O'Gara, O'Geary, Gearie, Gearey and many more.

Early Notables of the Gearey family (pre 1700)

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

Gearey migration to the United States

In the 18th and 19th centuries hundreds of thousands of Irish people immigrated to North American shores. The early settlers were enticed by the promise of their own land, but they were moderately well off in Ireland when they decided to emigrate. Therefore, they were merely carrying out a long and carefully thought out decision. The 1840s saw the emergence of a very different trend: thousands of extremely desperate people crammed into passenger boats hoping to find any type of opportunity. The Irish of this decade had seen their homeland severely stricken by crop failures which resulted in widespread disease and starvation. At whatever time the Irish immigrants came to North America, they were instrumental in the rapid development of the emerging nations of the United States and what would become known as Canada. An exhaustive search of passenger and immigration lists has revealed many persons bearing the name Gearey, or one of its variants:

Gearey Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Gearey, aged 18, who arrived in New York in 1854 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Gearey (post 1700)

  • Thomas F. Gearey, American politician, First Selectman of Farmington, Connecticut, 1922 [4]
  • A. M. Gearey, American politician, Member of South Dakota State House of Representatives 35th District, 1893-94 [4]
  • Jennifer Gearey, Canadian political candidate for Gatineau in the 2011 Canadian federal election
  • Julie Gearey, British BAFTA Award nominated writer, known for her work on Cuffs (2015), Prisoners Wives (2012) Secret Diary of a Call Girl (2007) and Coronation Street


  1. ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
  2. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from
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