O'Shirren History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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The surname O'Shirren is derived from Mac Searthuin, which means son of Searthun. The personal name Searthun is equivalent to Geoffrey.
Early Origins of the O'Shirren family
The surname O'Shirren was first found in County Donegal (Irish: Dún na nGall), northwest Ireland in the province of Ulster, sometimes referred to as County Tyrconnel, where they held a family seat, some say before the Anglo Norman invasion of Ireland by Strongbow in 1172. However, others claim that it is an offshoot of the Prendergast Clan in County Mayo, where they adopted the Gaelic name of O'Sirin, and established themselves on the Donegal/ Fermanagh border about the year 1250.
Early History of the O'Shirren family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Shirren research. Another 92 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1659 and 1673 are included under the topic Early O'Shirren History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Shirren Spelling Variations
Church officials and medieval scribes often spelled early surnames as they sounded. This practice often resulted in many spelling variations of even a single name. Early versions of the name O'Shirren included: Shearing, Sheering, Sheeran, Sharron, Sherren, Sherran, Shirran, Sheeran, Sheerin, O'Shearing, O'Sheering, O'Sheeran, O'Sharron, O'Sherren, O'Sherran, O'Shirran, O'Sheeran, O'Shearing and many more.
Early Notables of the O'Shirren family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early O'Shirren Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'Shirren family
In the mid-19th century, Ireland experienced one of the worst periods in its entire history. During this decade in order to ease the pressure of the soil, which was actually depleted by the effects of the previous years' grain crops, landowners forced tenant farmers and peasants onto tiny plots of land that barely provided the basic sustenance a family required. Conditions were worsened, though, by the population of the country, which was growing fast to roughly eight million. So when the Great Potato Famine of the mid-1840s hit, starvation and diseases decimated the population. Thousands of Irish families left the country for British North America and the United States. The new immigrants were often accommodated either in the opening western frontiers or as cheap unskilled labor in the established centers. In early passenger and immigration lists there are many immigrants bearing the name O'Shirren: Daniel, Edward, Hugh, Patrick and Thomas Sheerin who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1804 and 1864; Edward and John Sheering landed in Philadelphia in 1867.
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The O'Shirren 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: Vincit Veritas
Motto Translation: Truth conquers.