Mahan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

In its ancient Gaelic form, the Irish name Mahan was written Mac Mathghamhna, which later became Mac Mathuna. Both names are derived from the word "mathghamhan," which means "bear."

Early Origins of the Mahan family

The surname Mahan was first found in County Clare (Irish: An Clár) located on the west coast of Ireland in the province of Munster, where the MacMahons were lords of Corca Baisgin; and possessed the greater part of the baronies of Moyarta and Clonderlaw. [1]

"The Munster MacMahons formerly possessed the greater part of the Baronies of Moyarta and Clonderalaw, in the County Clare, in which county the predominant name now is McMahon." [2]

Early History of the Mahan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mahan research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1119, 1715, 1780, 1519, 1606, 1644, 1600, 1650, 1643, 1650, 1660, 1737, 1707, 1715, 1715, 1737, 1680, 1747, 1727, 1737, 1737 and 1747 are included under the topic Early Mahan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mahan 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 Mahan family name revealed numerous spelling variations, including MacMahon, MacMann, MacMahan, MacMohan and others.

Early Notables of the Mahan family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name at this time was Séamus mac Pilib Mac Mathghamhna (died 1519), was Bishop of Derry. Hugh Oge MacMahon (1606-1644), was an Irish conspirator, was probably of Sir Brian MacHugh Oge MacMahon, Lord of the Dartree in the county of Monaghan. Herber MacMahon (1600-1650), Bishop of Clogher in 1643, a Catholic leader, commanded the Ulster...
Another 59 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mahan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mahan Ranking

In the United States, the name Mahan is the 2,525th most popular surname with an estimated 12,435 people with that name. [3]

United States Mahan migration to the United States +

Irish immigrants began to leave the English-controlled Ireland in sizable numbers during the late 18th century. Many of these Irish immigrated to British North America or the United States in the hopes of gaining their own tract of farmland. This pattern of migration grew steadily until the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine caused a great exodus of immigrants to North America. These immigrants differed from their predecessors in that they were desperately fleeing the disease and starvation that plagued their homeland, and many were entirely destitute when they arrived in North America. Although these penniless immigrants were not warmly welcomed when they arrived, they were critical to the rapid development of the United States and what would become known as Canada. Many went to populate the western frontiers and others provided the cheap labor the new manufacturing sector and the building of bridges, roads, railways, and canals required. A thorough examination of immigration and passenger lists has revealed some of the earliest people to arrive in North America with name Mahan or one of its variants:

Mahan Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • James Mahan, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1745 [4]
  • Cornelius Mahan, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1765 [4]
Mahan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Sarah Mahan, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811 [4]
  • Pat Mahan, aged 34, who arrived in New York in 1812 [4]
  • John Mahan, who landed in Albany, NY in 1834 [4]
  • Thomas Mahan, who arrived in Tippecanoe County, Ind in 1842 [4]
  • Thomas Mahan, aged 10, who landed in New York, NY in 1850 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Mahan migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Mahan Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • John Mahan, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1822
  • Jane Mahan, aged 27, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Neptune" in 1834
  • J Mahan, who arrived in Victoria, British Columbia in 1862

Australia Mahan migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Mahan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Bedelia Mahan, aged 22, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1859 aboard the ship "James Jardine"
  • Daniel Mahan, aged 1, who arrived in South Australia in 1859 aboard the ship "James Jardine"

Contemporary Notables of the name Mahan (post 1700) +

  • Larry Mahan (b. 1943), American rodeo champion, inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in 1979
  • Sean Christopher Mahan (b. 1980), former American NFL football center who played from 2003-2009
  • Edward William "Eddie" Mahan (1892-1975), American football halfback for Harvard, inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951
  • Kerrigan Mahan (b. 1955), American voice actor
  • Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan (1840-1914), American naval flag officer, eponym of four ships
  • Dennis Hart Mahan (1802-1871), noted American military theorist and professor at the United States Military Academy at West Point from 1824-1871
  • Asa Mahan (1800-1889), American first president of Oberlin College
  • Armand Mahan (b. 1983), Ivorian professional football player
  • Dennis Mahan Michie (1870-1898), United States Army officer and college football coach, eponym of Michie Stadium, West Point and Fort Michie, New York
  • Henry Mahan Beardsley (b. 1858), American Republican politician, Mayor of Kansas City, Missouri, 1906-08; Delegate to Republican National Convention from Missouri, 1908, 1928 [5]

The Mahan 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: Sic nos sic sacra tuemur
Motto Translation: Thus we guard our sacred rights.

Suggested Readings for the name Mahan +

  • Genealogy of the Bennington Family by William Kearney Hall.
  • Mahan and Allied Families by Denise Kay Mahan Moore.

  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  2. ^ Matheson, Robert E., Special Report on Surnames in Ireland with Notes as to Numeric Strength, Derivation, Ethnology, and Distribution. Dublin: Alexander Thom & Co., 1894. Print
  3. ^
  4. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  5. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 27) . Retrieved from on Facebook