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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

Where did the Irish Sheeran family come from? What is the Irish Sheeran family crest and coat of arms? When did the Sheeran family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Sheeran family history?

The surname Sheeran is derived from Mac Searthuin, which means son of Searthun. The personal name Searthun is equivalent to Geoffrey.


Church officials and medieval scribes spelled names as they sounded; therefore, single person, could have his name spelt many different ways during their lifetime. While investigating the origins of the name Sheeran, many spelling variations were encountered, including: 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.

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.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Sheeran research. Another 181 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1659 and 1673 are included under the topic Early Sheeran History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 37 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Sheeran Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Ireland went through one of the most devastating periods in its history with the arrival of the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s. Many also lost their lives from typhus, fever and dysentery. And poverty was the general rule as tenant farmers were often evicted because they could not pay the high rents. Emigration to North America gave hundreds of families a chance at a life where work, freedom, and land ownership were all possible. For those who made the long journey, it meant hope and survival. The Irish emigration to British North America and the United States opened up the gates of industry, commerce, education and the arts. Early immigration and passenger lists have shown many Irish people bearing the name Sheeran:

Sheeran Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Catherine Sheeran, aged 18, landed in New York in 1849
  • Edwd. Sheeran, aged 23, who landed in America, in 1893
  • Eliza Sheeran, aged 20, who emigrated to the United States, in 1896

Sheeran Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Beatric Sheeran, aged 19, who landed in America from Ballymote, Ireland, in 1907
  • Bridget Sheeran, aged 21, who emigrated to the United States from Ballymote, Ireland, in 1909
  • Cecelia Sheeran, aged 24, who landed in America from Kildare, Ireland, in 1912
  • Ellen Sheeran, aged 24, who settled in America from Kildare, Ireland, in 1912
  • James Sheeran, aged 24, who landed in America from Mountrath, Ireland, in 1914

Sheeran Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Michael Sheeran, aged 25, a farm labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Hudson" in 1879
  • Catherine Sheeran, aged 17, a servant, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Hudson" in 1879


  • Josette Sheeran (b. 1954), American Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Programme
  • Patrick Sheeran, American politician, Member of New Jersey State House of Assembly from Hudson County, 1874-75, 1880
  • Lawrence A. Sheeran, American Democrat politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly from Westchester County 1st District, 1921
  • Mark Sheeran (b. 1982), former English professional football striker
  • Paul W Sheeran, Assistant Professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
  • Paschal Sheeran, Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Sheffield


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.


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  1. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Read, Charles Anderson. The Cabinet of Irish Literature Selections from the Works of the Chief Poets, Orators and Prose Writers of Ireland 4 Volumes. London: Blackie and Son, 1884. Print.
  3. Woulfe, Rev. Patrick. Irish Names and Surnames Collected and Edited with Explanatory and Historical Notes. Kansas City: Genealogical Foundation, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-940134-403).
  4. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of Ireland. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1969. Print.
  5. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
  6. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  7. Sullivan, Sir Edward. The Book of Kells 3rd Edition. New York: Crescent Books, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-517-61987-3).
  8. Vicars, Sir Arthur. Index to the Prerogative Wills of Ireland 1536-1810. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  9. MacLysaght, Edward. Mores Irish Familes. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0).
  10. Donovan, George Francis. The Pre-Revolutionary Irish in Massachusetts 1620-1775. Menasha, WI: Geroge Banta Publsihing Co., 1932. Print.
  11. ...

The Sheeran Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Sheeran Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 22 October 2015 at 11:25.

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