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An excerpt from archives copyright © 2000 - 2016

While many of Irish names are quite familiar to most, their original Gaelic forms are often forgotten and mysterious. The original Gaelic form of the name lahey is O Laochdha, which is derived from the word laochdha, which means heroic.


The surname lahey was first found in County Tipperary (Irish: Thiobraid Árann), established in the 13th century in South-central Ireland, in the province of Munster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, and were descended from the tribe of Uaithne.

Many different spelling variations of the surname lahey were found in the archives researched. These included Scribes and church officials generally spelled a name as it sounded; as a result, a person's name could be spelt innumerable ways in his lifetime. Leahy, Leahey, Leghe, Lahey, Lahy, O'Leahy and others.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our lahey research. Another 278 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1270, 1420, and 1641 are included under the topic Early lahey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


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


North America received thousands of Irish immigrants from the English-ruled Ireland during the 19th century. Once in the United States or what would become Canada, these immigrants quickly contributed to the ongoing settling and industrialization processes. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. An exhaustive examination of immigrant and passenger lists has shown many early immigrants bearing the surname of lahey:

lahey Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Arthur Lahey settled in Virginia in 1649

lahey Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • James, Thomas, and William Lahey settled in Boston Massachusetts between 1848 and 1849
  • Andrew, Dennis, James, Patrick Lahey all landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1833 and 1868

lahey Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Catherine Lahey arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Robert Burns" in 1834

lahey Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Elizabeth Lahey, aged 18, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Lismoyne"

  • Timothy William "Tim" Lahey (b. 1982), American minor league baseball relief pitcher
  • John L. Lahey (b. 1946), American academic, President of Quinnipiac University
  • John C. Lahey (b. 1953), American architect, Chairman and a Principal in Charge of Design for Solomon Cordwell Buenz (SCB)
  • Lyle Lahey, American political cartoonist
  • Raymond J. Lahey (b. 1904), American Democrat politician, Member of Missouri State House of Representatives from St. Louis City 5th District, 1943-46
  • Matthew J. Lahey, American Republican politician, Mayor of Laconia, New Hampshire, 1996-2002
  • Romeo Watkins Lahey MBE (1887-1968), Australian businessman, civil servant and conservationist

lahey Historic Events

Halifax Explosion

  • Mr. Frank Dennis  Lahey, Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who survived the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917 but later died due to injuries

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: Tout vient de dieu
Motto Translation: All comes from God.


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    Other References

    1. Harris, Ruth-Ann and B. Emer O'Keefe. The Search for Missing Friends Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in the Boston Pilot Volume II 1851-1853. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1991. Print.
    2. Kennedy, Patrick. Kennedy's Book of Arms. Canterbury: Achievements, 1967. Print.
    3. Tepper, Michael Ed & Elizabeth P. Bentley Transcriber. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800-1819. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1986. Print.
    4. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
    5. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
    6. MacLysaght, Edward. Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7).
    7. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
    8. MacLysaght, Edward. Mores Irish Familes. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0).
    9. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
    10. Fitzgerald, Thomas W. Ireland and Her People A Library of Irish Biography 5 Volumes. Chicago: Fitzgerald. Print.
    11. ...

    The lahey Family Crest was acquired from the archives. The lahey Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

    This page was last modified on 5 July 2016 at 14:37.

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