The Irish name Gerihay was originally written in a Gaelic form as Mag Oireachtaigh, which is derived from the word "oireachtach," referring to a member of an assembly. Translating the name into English produces no less than seventeen different synonyms. But the origin of the name is most intriguing. In the 12th century, the name was simply O Roduibh but a Oireachtach O Roduibh at that time caused the name to be shortened to Oireachtach, their present form.
Early Origins of the Gerihay family
The surname Gerihay was first found in counties Roscommon
(Irish: Gaillimh) part of the province of Connacht
, located on the west coast of the Island, where they were one of the Hi Maine Septs in Kelly's country. They were direct descendants of the O'Connors, Kings of Connacht, and the Chief of the Clann was one of the four royal chiefs under the O'Connor. The tree on the Coat of Arms illustrates their descendancy from the O'Connors.
Early History of the Gerihay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gerihay research.Another 155 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1585, 1744 and 1598 are included under the topic Early Gerihay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gerihay Spelling Variations
The Middle Ages saw a great number of spelling variations
for surnames common to the Irish landscape. One reason for these variations is the fact that surnames were not rigidly fixed by this period. The following variations for the name Gerihay were encountered in the archives: Gerrity, Gerty, Gerighty, Gerighaty, Gerety, Gerahty, Garraty, Geraty, Jerety, McGerity, MacGeraghty, MacGartie, MacGarty and many more.
Early Notables of the Gerihay family (pre 1700)
Another 29 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gerihay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Gerihay family to the New World and Oceana
Death and immigration greatly reduced Ireland's population in the 19th century. For the native Irish people poverty, hunger, and racial prejudice was common. Therefore, thousands left their homeland to seek opportunity in North America. Those who survived the journey and the quarantine camps to which they arrived, were instrumental towards building the strong developing nations of the United States and the future Canada. By far, the largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine
during the late 1840s. These were employed as construction or factory workers. An examination of passenger and immigration lists has shown early immigrants bearing the name Gerihay: Robert Gerity who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1858; Patrick Gerrity, also Peter and Phillip, all arrived in the 1860's; Sally McGarty arrived in New York State in 1847.