MacGorghan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Many variations of the name MacGorghan have evolved since the time of its initial creation. In Gaelic it appeared as Mac Gormain, derived from the word "gorm," which means "blue."
Early Origins of the MacGorghan family
The surname MacGorghan was first found in County Clare, where O'Gorman was chief of Tullichrin, a territory comprising parts of the baronies of Moyarta and Ibrackan. They claim descendancy through the O'Connor pedigree, specifically through Daire, a younger brother of Ros Failgeach. He was the second son of Mor, the King of Leinster and the 109th Monarch of Ireland. The family were the Chiefs of Ibrckan in County Claire.  The Mac (Mc) prefix is rarely found today due to the fact that in the early nineteenth century native Irish "were in complete subjection." 
Early History of the MacGorghan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacGorghan research. Another 90 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 117 and 1172 are included under the topic Early MacGorghan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacGorghan Spelling Variations
Irish names were rarely spelled consistently in the Middle Ages. Spelling variations of the name MacGorghan dating from that time include Gorman, MacGorman, O'Gorman and others.
Early Notables of the MacGorghan family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early MacGorghan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacGorghan family
The 19th century saw a great wave of Irish families leaving Ireland for the distant shores of North America and Australia. These families often left their homeland hungry, penniless, and destitute due to the policies of England. Those Irish immigrants that survived the long sea passage initially settled on the eastern seaboard of the continent. Some, however, moved north to a then infant Canada as United Empire Loyalists after ironically serving with the English in the American War of Independence. Others that remained in America later joined the westward migration in search of land. The greatest influx of Irish immigrants, though, came to North America during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. Thousands left Ireland at this time for North America, and those who arrived were immediately put to work building railroads, coal mines, bridges, and canals. In fact, the foundations of today's powerful nations of the United States and Canada were to a larger degree built by the Irish. Archival documents indicate that members of the MacGorghan family relocated to North American shores quite early: William Gorman who settled in New England in 1747; another William settled in Boston in 1804; Bernard, Edward, Hugh, James, John, Michael, Owen, Patrick, Samuel, Thomas and William Gorman, all arrived in Philadelphia between 1830 and 1865..
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The MacGorghan 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: Primi et ultimi in bello
Motto Translation: First and last in war.
- ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
- ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)