Show ContentsMacColghen History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

While the Anglicized versions of Irish names are familiar to most people, all Irish names have a long and proud Gaelic heritage that is often unknown. The original Gaelic form of the name MacColghen is O Cuileagain.

Early Origins of the MacColghen family

The surname MacColghen was first found in County Derry, also known as Londonderry where they claim descent from the O'Conors (Faley) through Cumasach, brother of Aeneas, having derived their surname from the Irish "colg" which means "sword," thus the name Colgan was a "swordsman," a quo Clann Colgain. [1]

Early History of the MacColghen family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacColghen research. Another 56 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1592, 1657, 1645, 1645 and 1765 are included under the topic Early MacColghen History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacColghen Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Colgan, MacColgan, McColgan, O'Colgan and others.

Early Notables of the MacColghen family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family at this time was John Colgan, O.F.M. (1592-1657), an Irish Franciscan friar noted as a hagiographer and historian. He was a "member of the Irish Minorite convent of St. Antony of Padua at Louvain. He was also professor of theology in the university of that place, but it appears that he retired from that office before 1645. He projected a colossal work on the...
Another 67 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacColghen Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the MacColghen family

Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Patrick Colgan, who arrived in New York in 1761; John Colgan, who arrived in New Jersey in 1771; Edward McColgan, who came to New Castle, DE in 1771; John McColgan, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1816.

The MacColghen 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: Virtus probata florescit
Motto Translation: Tried virtue flourishes.

  1. O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4) on Facebook