O'Meara History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The name O'Meara has undergone many variations in the time that has passed since its genesis. In Gaelic it appeared as O Meadhra, which is derived from the word meadhar, which means merry.
Early Origins of the O'Meara family
The surname O'Meara 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 held a family seat from ancient times.
"The O'Mearas had an extensive territory in the Barony of Upper Ormond, County Tipperary, in which O'Meara was a Chief.The name of their principal residence, Tuam-ui-Meara, is still retained in the town of Toomyvara. The Mearas or O'Mearas are still numerous in that locality." 
Early History of the O'Meara family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Meara research. Another 91 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1619, 1614, 1681 and 1818 are included under the topic Early O'Meara History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Meara 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 O'Meara family name revealed numerous spelling variations, including Meara, O'Mara, Mar, O'Meara and others.
Early Notables of the O'Meara family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family at this time was Dermod O'Meara, an Irish physician and poet, author of the first medical work printed in Dublin in 1619; Edmund...
Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Meara Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Meara migration to the United States +
Under the rule of England, land ownership in Ireland changed dramatically, and many native Irish families found themselves renting out land to farm from absentee owners. This was one of the prime reasons that immigration to North America began in the late 18th century: Irish farmers dreamed of owning their own parcel of land to work for themselves. At this point, the immigrants were at least of modest means for the passage across the Atlantic was often quite dear. In the 1840s the Great Potato Famine created an exodus of people of quite different means. These people were most often destitute: they either sold anything they had to gain a passage or they were sponsored by philanthropic societies. Many of these immigrants were sick from disease and starvation: as a result many did not survive the long transatlantic journey. Although those settlers that did survive were often despised and discriminated against by people already established in these nations, they were critical to rapid development of the powerful industrial nations of the United States and the country that would later become known as Canada. An examination of immigration and passenger lists shows many persons bearing the name of O'Meara or one of its variants:
O'Meara Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- James, Patrick, Tim, and William O'Meara, who settled in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860
O'Meara Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Daniel O'Meara, aged 18, who landed in America from Kanturk, Ireland, in 1906
- Bridget O'Meara, aged 16, who immigrated to the United States from Kenmore, Ireland, in 1907
- Bridget O'Meara, aged 22, who landed in America from County Waterford, Ireland, in 1909
- Anne O'Meara, aged 23, who landed in America from Cork, Ireland, in 1910
- Annie O'Meara, aged 18, who immigrated to the United States from Clouhgordan, Ireland, in 1910
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
O'Meara migration to Australia +
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
O'Meara Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- Mary O'Meara, aged 41, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Nugget" 
O'Meara 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:
O'Meara Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Mrs. O'Meara, British settler with 3 children travelling from London aboard the ship "Swordfish" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 12th July 1859 
- Michael O'Meara, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Empress" in 1865
- Catherine O'Meara, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Empress" in 1865
- Judith O'Meara, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Empress" in 1865
Contemporary Notables of the name O'Meara (post 1700) +
- Onorato Timothy O'Meara (1928-2018), American mathematician known for his work in number theory, linear groups and quadratic forms
- Martin J. O'Meara, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Connecticut State House of Representatives from East Hartford, 1932 
- M. J. O'Meara, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Kansas, 1888 
- Martin O'Meara, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Connecticut State House of Representatives from Granby, 1940 
- John R. O'Meara, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Michigan, 1956, 1960; Candidate for U.S. Representative from Michigan 3rd District, 1958 
- John Baptiste O'Meara (1852-1926), American Democrat politician, Lieutenant Governor of Missouri, 1893-97 
- James W. O'Meara, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Pennsylvania State Senate 25th District, 1956 
- George F. O'Meara, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Massachusetts, 1964, 1980 
- Frances J. O'Meara, American Republican politician, Member of Missouri Republican State Committee, 1932-42; Chair of Audrain County Republican Party, 1942-49; Member of Republican National Committee from Missouri, 1944 
- Edward S. O'Meara, American Republican politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Maine 1st District, 1988 
- ... (Another 26 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Related Stories +
The O'Meara 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: Opima spolia
Motto Translation: The spoils of honour.