Meager History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
While many Irish names are familiar, their past incarnations are often shrouded in mystery, reflecting the ancient Gaelic heritage of their bearers. The original Gaelic form of the name Meager is O Meachair, derived from the word "michair," which means "hospitable" or "kindly."
Early Origins of the Meager family
The surname Meager 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 traditionally belong to the barony of Ikerrin. The family has retained this area as their homestead as over 50% of them come from here. 
"The O'Meaghers were formerly powerful Chiefs possessing the Barony of Ikerrin, in County Tipperary, of which O'Meagher was Lord. The Meaghers or Mahers are principally found in County Tipperary at present." 
Early History of the Meager family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Meager research. Another 119 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1551, 1635 and 1705 are included under the topic Early Meager History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Meager Spelling Variations
Irish names recorded during the Middle Ages are characterized by many spelling variations. This preponderance of variations for common names can be explained by the fact that the scribes and church officials that kept records during that period individually decided how to capture one's name. These recorders primarily based their decisions on how the name was pronounced or what it meant. Research into the name Meager revealed many variations, including Maher, O'Meagher, Meagher, O'Maher, Mahir and others.
Early Notables of the Meager family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Meager Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Meager migration to Canada +
A great wave of Irish migration occurred during the 19th century as a direct result of English colonial rule and tight-fisted absentee landlords. Many of these Irish immigrants boarded passenger ships bound for North America. Those who migrated early enough were given land in either British North America or the United States; those who came in the late 19th century were typically employed in industrial centers as laborers. At whatever age they undertook the dangerous passage to North America, those Irish immigrants were essential to the speedy development of the two infant nations to which they arrived, whether they broke and settled land, helped build canals, bridges, and railroads, or produced products for consumer consumption. An examination of immigration and passenger lists has uncovered a large number of immigrants bearing the name Meager or one of its variants:
Meager Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
- Mr. Richard Meager U.E. who settled in Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1784 
Meager migration to New Zealand +
Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:
Meager Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Miss Meager, (b. 1874), aged 1 day, Cornish settler departing on 6th January 1874 aboard the ship "Rakaia" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 26th April 1874 
- Mr. Alfred Meager, (b. 1871), aged 3, Cornish settler departing on 6th January 1874 aboard the ship "Rakaia" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 26th April 1874 
- Mr. John Meager, (b. 1869), aged 5, Cornish settler departing on 6th January 1874 aboard the ship "Rakaia" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 26th April 1874 
- Mr. John William Meager, (b. 1845), aged 29, Cornish coalminer departing on 6th January 1874 aboard the ship "Rakaia" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 26th April 1874 
- Mrs. Kitty A. Meager, (b. 1850), aged 24, Cornish settler departing on 6th January 1874 aboard the ship "Rakaia" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 26th April 1874 
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Contemporary Notables of the name Meager (post 1700) +
- Jill Meager, English actor, artist and portrait painter who studied at Trinity Hall, Cambridge
- Lee Meager (b. 1978), English lightweight boxer from Salford, England
Related Stories +
The Meager 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: In periculis audax
Motto Translation: Bold in danger
- ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
- ^ 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
- ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
- ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to Lyttelton 1858-84 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/new_zealand_assisted.pdf