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O'Shae History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



Irish names tend to vary widely in their spelling and overall form. The original Gaelic form of the name O'Shae is O Seaghdha, which is modified to O Se. The surname is derived from the word seaghdha which means hawk like but has a secondary meaning of stately.


Early Origins of the O'Shae family


The surname O'Shae was first found in County Kerry (Irish:Ciarraí) part of the former County Desmond (14th-17th centuries), located in Southwestern Ireland, in Munster province, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

The O'Shee variant claims Kilkenny as their ancestral home. At one time they were one of the most important of the ruling families of Kilkenny. Robert O'Shee was sovereign of the area in 1493. This family alternated using the "O'" prefix as not, as later his son Richard Shee, the Sovereign of Kilkenny (1545-1546) and (1553-1554) was Member of Parliament for Kilkenny in 1559.


Early History of the O'Shae family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Shae research.
Another 98 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1172 and 1500 are included under the topic Early O'Shae History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

O'Shae Spelling Variations


Pronunciation, rather than spelling, guided scribes and church officials when recording names during the Middle Ages. This practice often resulted in one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname O'Shae are preserved in these old documents. The various spellings of the name that were found include O'Shea, O'Shee, McShea, McShee and others.

Early Notables of the O'Shae family (pre 1700)


Another 30 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Shae Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the O'Shae family to the New World and Oceana


During the 19th century thousands of impoverished Irish families made the long journey to British North America and the United States. These people were leaving a land that had become beset with poverty, lack of opportunity, and hunger. In North America, they hoped to find land, work, and political and religious freedoms. Although the majority of the immigrants that survived the long sea passage did make these discoveries, it was not without much perseverance and hard work: by the mid-19th century land suitable for agriculture was short supply, especially in British North America, in the east; the work available was generally low paying and physically taxing construction or factory work; and the English stereotypes concerning the Irish, although less frequent and vehement, were, nevertheless, present in the land of freedom, liberty, and equality for all men. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Research into passenger and immigration lists has brought forth evidence of the early members of the O'Shae family in North America: Daniel, James, John, Patrick, Thomas McShea all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860; Bartholomew, David, Edward, Lawrence, James, John, Michael, Timothy O'Shea all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860..

O'Shae Family Crest Products



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