Goggans History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Celtic in origin, the name Goggans came from the rugged landscape of Wales. The name's origins go back to a time when the Goggans family lived in the parish of Cogan, which is in the diocese of Llandaff in the county of Glamorgan. The name literally means "a cup or bowl" [1] and probably meant "dweller in a bowl-shaped valley." [2]

Early Origins of the Goggans family

The surname Goggans was first found in Glamorganshire (Welsh: Sir Forgannwg), a region of South Wales, anciently part of the Welsh kingdom of Glywysing at Cogan, a parish, in the union of Cardiff, hundred of Dinas- Powys, county of Glamorgan, South Wales. [3]

"Cogan or Coggan is an ancient west of England name. There was a John de Cogan, of Hunispull, Somerset, in the reign of Edward I.; and in the reign of Richard II., William Cogan was sheriff of the county. De Cogan was a name found also in different parts of Devonshire in the time of Edward I., and it has long been an old Tiverton name." [4]

Exploring Somerset in more detail, Richard Cogan was registered there 1 Edward III (during the first year of the reign of King Edward III) [5] and the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 inlcuded: John de Cogan, Somerset; and John de Cogan, Devon [6]

"From this it is clear that the south-west forms of the surname are derived from the Llandaff parish. To Somerset and Devon was not a long journey." [6]

Scotland was home to the family about this time. "Peter Cogan witnessed the gift of an acre of land in Coldingham to the monks of St. Cuthbert, and Robert Cogan witnessed a charter of lands in Raynigton to the Priory of Coldingham, 1275. Robert Cogan del counte de Berewyk rendered homage, 1296. [(to King Edward I during his invasion of Scotland)]" [7]

The name "is uncommon in the Isle of Man." [8]

Early History of the Goggans family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Goggans research. Another 183 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1605, 1716, 1723, 1780, 1809, 1684, 1731, 1545, 1607, 1545, 1686, 1591, 1593, 1607, 1233, 1278, 1230 and 1172 are included under the topic Early Goggans History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Goggans Spelling Variations

Compared to other ancient cultures found in the British Isles, the number of Welsh surnames are relatively few, but there are an inordinately large number of spelling variations. These spelling variations began almost as soon as surname usage became common. As a result, people could not specify how to spell their own names leaving the specific recording up to the individual scribe or priest. Those recorders would then spell the names as they heard them, causing many different variations. Later, many Welsh names were recorded in English. This transliteration process was extremely imprecise since the Brythonic Celtic language of the Welsh used many sounds the English language was not accustomed to. Finally, some variations occurred by the individual's design: a branch loyalty within a family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were indicated by spelling variations of one's name. The Goggans name over the years has been spelled Cogan, Cogen, Coogan, Coogen, Coogin, Coggan, Coggen, Coggin, Coggins, Gogan, Goggin and many more.

Early Notables of the Goggans family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Thomas Cogan (1545?-1607), English physician, born about 1545 at Chard, Somersetshire. He was educated at Oxford. He practised as a physician at Manchester. Before 1686 he married Ellen, daughter of Sir Edmund...
Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Goggans Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Goggans family to Ireland

Some of the Goggans family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 93 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Goggans family

Many Welsh joined the great migrations to North America in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Like their Scottish and Irish neighbors, many Welsh families left their homeland hoping to find hope and prosperity in a land that the English did not exercise a tight rule over. Those Welsh immigrants that successfully traveled to North America went on to make significant contributions to the rapid development of both Canada and the United States in terms of the settling of land and the establishment of industry. They also added to the rich cultural heritage of both countries. An examination into the immigration and passenger lists has discovered a number of people bearing the name Goggans: John Cogan who settled in Boston in 1633 with his wife Abigail; James Coggin settled in Virginia in 1638; William Coggins arrived in Philadelphia in 1873.


Contemporary Notables of the name Goggans (post 1700) +

  • J. K. P. Goggans, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from South Carolina, 1888 [9]
  • Briggs A. Goggans, American Republican politician, Presidential Elector for Georgia, 1996 [9]


The Goggans 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: Constans fidei
Motto Translation: Constant to honor.


  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Wales. Institute of Historical Research, 1849, Print.
  4. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  6. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  7. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  8. ^ Moore, A.W., Manx Names. London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1906. Print
  9. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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