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The Morgan name is Celtic in origin, arising from the ancient Britons of Wales. It comes from the Old Welsh personal name Morcant, composed of the Welsh elements "mor," meaning "sea," and cant meaning "circle."

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The surname Morgan was first found in Caernarvonshire (Welsh: Sir Gaernarfon), a former county in Northwest Wales, anciently part of the Kingdom of Gwynedd, and today divided between the unitary authorities of Gwynedd and Conwy. The surname is derived from the " Welsh personal name of high antiquity. The founder of the Pelagain heresy, in the fourth century, was a true Welshman and a monk of Bangor. His name was Morgan, which signifies 'Of the Sea' and this was correctly Latinized Pelagius. The Morgans of Golden Grove, co. Flint, descend from Marchudd ap Cynan, founder of the eighth noble tribe of North Wales and Powys. " [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.

There are relatively few surnames native to Wales, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. Early variations of Welsh surnames can be explained by the fact that very few people in the early Middle Ages were literate. Priests and the few other literate people were responsible for recording names in official documents. And because most people could not specific how to properly record their names it was up to the individual recorder of that time to determine how a spoken name should be recorded. Variations due to the imprecise or improper recording of a name continued later in history when names originally composed in the Brythonic Celtic, language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, were transliterated into English. Welsh names that were documented in English often changed dramatically since the native language of Wales, which was highly inflected, did not copy well. Occasionally, however, spelling variations were carried out according to an individual's specific design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by minor variations. The spelling variations of the name Morgan have included Morgan, Morgen, Morgain, Morgaine and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Morgan research. Another 317 words (23 lines of text) covering the years 1600, 1635, 1688, 1680, 1682, 1560, 1653, 1624, 1625, 1589, 1664, 1654, 1604, 1679, 1608, 1673, 1690, 1664, 1700, 1689, 1690, 1698, 1700, 1690, 1705, 1641, 1715 and 1697 are included under the topic Early Morgan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Admiral Sir Henry Morgan ( ca. 1635-1688), Welsh pirate who raided Spanish ships and settlements in the Caribbean, and became acting Governor of Jamaica (1680-1682); William Morgan (1560-1653), a Welsh politician who sat in the House of Commons of England in 1624...

Another 116 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Morgan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Some of the Morgan family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 131 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Many Welsh families joined their Scottish and Irish neighbors during the late 1800s and early 1900s in seeking refuge in North America. Like the Irish and Scottish, many Welsh anxiously awaited the work, freedom, and opportunities that they believed lay in North America. Those who did journey over to the United States and what became known as Canada often realized those dreams, but only through much toil and perseverance. Whenever and however these Welsh immigrants arrived in North America, they were instrumental in the creation of the industry, commerce, and cultural heritage within those two developing nations. In the immigration and passenger lists a number of early immigrants bearing the name Morgan were found:

Morgan Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Benedict Morgan, who landed in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • Bennet Morgan, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • Edmund Morgan settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Geo Morgan, aged 12, arrived in Bermuda in 1635
  • Henry Morgan, who arrived in Maryland in 1635-1640
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Morgan Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • John Morgan, who arrived in Virginia in 1700
  • David Morgan, who arrived in America in 1700
  • Enoch Morgan, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1701
  • Adam Morgan, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1747
  • George Morgan, who landed in America in 1760-1763
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Morgan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • James Morgan, who arrived in America in 1806
  • Aron Morgan, who landed in America in 1809
  • Alexander Morgan, aged 45, arrived in New York in 1812
  • Charles Morgan, aged 28, landed in New York in 1812
  • Felix Morgan, aged 46, landed in New York in 1812
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Morgan Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • Dixey Morgan, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Mr. James Morgan U.E. who arrived at Port Roseway, [Shelbourne], Nova Scotia on October 26, 1783 was passenger number 235 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on September 28, 1783 at Staten Island, New York, USA

Morgan Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Henry Morgan, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1811
  • Anne Morgan, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1818
  • Francis Morgan, aged 30, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Forth" in 1833
  • Jane Morgan, aged 22, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Forth" in 1833
  • William Morgan, aged 16, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Forth" in 1833
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Morgan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • William Morgan, English convict from Dorset, who was transported aboard the "Ann" on August 1809, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • George Morgan, English convict from Lincoln, who was transported aboard the "Almorah" on April 1817, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Henry Morgan, Scottish convict from Glasgow, who was transported aboard the "Agamemnon" on April 22, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Lewis Morgan, Welsh convict from Glamorgan, who was transported aboard the "Adamant" on March 16, 1821, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Benjamin Morgan, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on April 1st, 1822, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
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Morgan Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Jane Emily Morgan arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Aurora" in 1840
  • Robert Morgan, aged 20, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Phoebe Dunbar" in 1841850
  • Thomas Morgan, aged 32, a brickmaker, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Birman" in 1842
  • Mary Ann Morgan, aged 34, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Birman" in 1842
  • John Morgan, aged 8, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Birman" in 1842
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  • William Morgan (1930-2016), American architect and author, recipient of the AIA Florida Award of Merit (1964)
  • Rex Morgan (1948-2016), American NBA basketball player for the Boston Celtics (1970-1972)
  • Dennis Morgan (1952-2015), American NFL football running back who played from 1974 to 1975
  • Barbara Radding Morgan (b. 1951), American former NASA astronaut with over 305 hours in space
  • William Wilson Morgan (1906-1994), American astronomer. Asteroid 3180 Morgan is named after him
  • Harry Morgan (1915-2011), born Harry Bratsberg, American television actor perhaps best-known as Colonel Sherman T. Potter on M*A*S*H
  • Frank Morgan (1890-1949), American actor best known for his portrayal of the title character in the film The Wizard of Oz
  • Lia Morgan, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Colorado, 2008
  • Linda J. Morgan, American Democrat politician, Member, Interstate Commerce Commission, 1994-95
  • Louise Elaine Morgan, American Republican politician, Member of West Virginia Republican State Executive Committee, 1949-52
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Morgan Historic Events



Empress of Ireland

  • Mr. James Morgan, British Trimmer from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and survived the sinking on May 29th 1914
  • Mr. William Leslie Morgan (1894-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914
  • Miss Lily Else Morgan (1893-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914
  • Mr. James Oswald Morgan (1850-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914

Halifax Explosion

  • Mr. William G. Morgan (1894-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who survived the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917 but later died due to injuries
  • Mr. J. R. Morgan (1894-1917), English Chief Officer aboard the SS Curaca from Liverpool, England, United Kingdom who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917

HMS Hood

  • Mr. Ronald Morgan (b. 1921), English Able Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Darlington, County Durham, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking
  • Mr. Albert H Morgan (b. 1921), English Marine serving for the Royal Marine from Barking, Essex, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking

HMS Prince of Wales

  • Mr. Howard William Morgan, British Joiner 4th Class, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died during the sinking

HMS Repulse

  • Mr. Vivian Morgan, British Stoker Petty Officer, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking
  • Mr. Harry John Morgan (b. 1893), "Jack" British Chief Petty Officer Stoker, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking
  • Mr. James W Morgan, British Engine Room Artificer, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking
  • Mr. William J Morgan, British Stoker 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking
  • Mr. William D Morgan, British Seaman Able Bodied, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking
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Pan Am Flight 103 (Lockerbie)

  • Jane Ann Morgan (1951-1988), American Attorney from London, England, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died

RMS Titanic

  • Mr. Charles Frederick "Bird" Morgan (d. 1912), aged 42, English Assistant Storekeeper from Birkenhead, Cheshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking
  • Mr. Arthur Herbert Morgan (d. 1912), aged 27, English Greaser from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking
  • Mr. Thomas A. Morgan (d. 1912), aged 26, English Trimmer from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking
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  • The Morgan Family History by Alice Helper Morgan.
  • An American Family: Morgan by Patricia Gausnell.
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Citations



  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.

Other References

  1. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-005-8).
  2. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  3. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  4. Fairbairn,. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  5. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Thirsk, Joan ed. Et. Al. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  7. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  8. Bradsley C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print.
  9. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  10. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  11. ...

The Morgan Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Morgan 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 18 July 2016 at 21:40.

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