Rehan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Irish surnames are linked to the long Gaelic heritage of the Island nation. The original Gaelic form of the name Rehan is O Riagain. In County Waterford, the Gaelic form O Reagain is used.

Early Origins of the Rehan family

The surname Rehan was first found in County Meath (Irish: An Mhí) anciently part of the kingdom of Brega, located in Eastern Ireland, in the province of Leinster, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.

One of the oldest records of the family was Morice Regan ( fl. 1171), an Irish interpreter. He is stated in an old French poem, of which the only text begins 'Par soen demeine latimer.' He is thought to have acted as an interpreter and herald, or envoy in the service of Diarmaid MacMurchada, King of Leinster. [1]

Early History of the Rehan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rehan research. Another 137 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1172 and 1172 are included under the topic Early Rehan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Rehan Spelling Variations

Lacking standardized spellings, scribes and church officials recorded people's name according to how they sounded. This practice often led to the misleading result of one person's name being recorded under several different spellings. Numerous spelling variations of the surname Rehan are preserved in the archival documents of the period. The various spellings of the name that were found include Reagan, Regan, O'Regan, O'Reagan and others.

Early Notables of the Rehan family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Rehan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Rehan family

Suffering from poverty and racial discrimination, thousands of Irish families left the island in the 19th century for North America aboard cramped passenger ships. The early migrants became settlers of small tracts of land, and those that came later were often employed in the new cities or transitional work camps. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine during the late 1840s. Although the immigrants from this period were often maligned when they arrived in the United States, they provided the cheap labor that was necessary for the development of that country as an industrial power. Early immigration and passenger lists have revealed many immigrants bearing the name Rehan: John Regan, who settled with his wife and three children in Prescott, Ontario, Canada, in 1825; James, John, Patrick, Thomas and William O'Regan, who all arrived at Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860.



  1. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print


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