Harrah 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 Harrah is O hEaghra, connoting a descendant of Eaghra. Harrah is a patronymic surname, which derived from the vernacular given name tradition.
Early Origins of the Harrah family
The surname Harrah was first found in County Sligo (Irish: Sligeach), in the province of Connacht in Northwestern Ireland, where they held a family seat from ancient times.
Early History of the Harrah family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harrah research. Another 111 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harrah History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Harrah Spelling Variations
The scribes who created documents long before either the Gaelic or English language resembled their standardized versions of today recorded words as they sounded. Consequently, in the Middle Ages the names of many people were recorded under different spellings each time they were written down. Research on the Harrah family name revealed numerous spelling variations, including Hara, Harra, O'Hara and others.
Early Notables of the Harrah family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Harrah Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Harrah migration to the United States +
Suffering from poverty and racial discrimination, thousands of Irish families left the island in the 19th century for North America aboard cramped passenger ships. The early migrants became settlers of small tracts of land, and those that came later were often employed in the new cities or transitional work camps. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Although the immigrants from this period were often maligned when they arrived in the United States, they provided the cheap labor that was necessary for the development of that country as an industrial power. Early immigration and passenger lists have revealed many immigrants bearing the name Harrah:
Harrah Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Eliza Harrah, aged 56, who landed in America from England, in 1902
- Mary Harrah, who landed in America, in 1903
- Ernest Harrah, aged 22, who immigrated to the United States, in 1905
- Alice Harrah, aged 22, who landed in America, in 1905
- Constanana Harrah, aged 22, who immigrated to the United States, in 1908
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Contemporary Notables of the name Harrah (post 1700) +
- Roland Edward Harrah (1973-1995), American film and television child actor, actor, songwriter and musician
- Dennis Wayne Harrah (b. 1953), American former NFL offensive lineman
- William Fisk Harrah (1911-1978), American businessman and the founder of Harrah's Hotel and Casinos
- Colbert Dale "Toby" Harrah (b. 1948), American retired Major League Baseball player
- Glen Harrah, American Democrat politician, Chair of Greenbrier County Democratic Party, 1940-42 
- C. W. Harrah, American politician, Honorary Consul for Cuba at Detroit, Michigan, 1906 
- Harrah Judson Reynolds (b. 1835), American politician, Prohibition Candidate for New York State Assembly from Monroe County 2nd District, 1909 
Related Stories +
The Harrah 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: Virtute et claritate
Motto Translation: By virtue and high repute.