Show ContentsRyon History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's Irish surnames are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Ryon originally appeared in Gaelic as O Maoilriain.

Early Origins of the Ryon family

The surname Ryon was first found in County Tipperary (Irish: Thiobraid Árann), established in the 13th century in South-central Ireland, in the province of Munster.

According to O'Hart, the family claim descent from the Heremon Kings of Ireland through the MacMorough pedigree, specifically Cormac, brother of Eoghan who was ancestor of O'Righin; anglicized Mulrain, O'Ryan, Ryan and Ryne. [1]

However, MacLysaght claims the family claim descent from O Maoilriain located in Owney, formerly called Owney O'Mulryan which forms two modern baronies on the borders of Limerick and Tipperary. [2] As both authorities were Chief Heralds of Ireland in their own time, we must leave the reader to ponder which of the two is more likely.

Early History of the Ryon family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ryon research. Another 131 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1694, 1709, 1732 and 1760 are included under the topic Early Ryon History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ryon Spelling Variations

Before widespread literacy came to Ireland, a name was often recorded under several different variations during the life of its bearer. Accordingly, numerous spelling variations were revealed in the search for the origin of the name Ryon family name. Variations found include O'Ryan, Ryan, Mulrian, Mulryan, O'Mulrian and many more.

Early Notables of the Ryon family

Notable among the family name at this time was Father Abraham Ryan, Poet; and Lacy Ryan (c. 1694-1760), English actor who appeared at the Haymarket Theatre about 1709. He was the son of a tailor, of descent presumedly Irish, was born in the...
Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ryon Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Ryon migration to the United States +

Thousands of Irish families left for North American shores in the 19th century. These people were searching for a life unencumbered with poverty, hunger, and racial discrimination. Many arrived to eventually find such conditions, but many others simply did not arrive: victims of the diseased, overcrowded ships in which they traveled to the New World. Those who lived to see North American shores were instrumental in the development of the growing nations of Canada and the United States. A thorough examination of passenger and immigration lists has disclosed evidence of many early immigrants of the name Ryon:

Ryon Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • James Ryon, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1764 [3]
Ryon Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Ryon, aged 25, who landed in Missouri in 1849 [3]
  • Thomas Ryon, aged 27, who arrived in Missouri in 1849 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Ryon (post 1700) +

  • John Walker Ryon (1825-1901), American Democratic Party politician, U.S. Representative from Pennsylvania 13th District, 1879-81 [4]
  • John Ryon Jr., American Democratic Party politician, Member of Pennsylvania State Senate 11th District, 1825-29 [4]
  • J. Wilson Ryon, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Maryland, 1936 [4]
  • George W. Ryon, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Pennsylvania, 1876 [4]

The Ryon 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: Malo mori quam fodari
Motto Translation: I would rather die than be disgraced.

  1. O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
  2. MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  3. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  4. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 19) . Retrieved from on Facebook