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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016

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

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


Medieval scribes and church officials spelt names simply the way they sounded, which explains the various name spelling variations of the name Sheerin that were encountered when researching that surname. The many spelling variations 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.

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 Sheerin research. Another 183 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1659 and 1673 are included under the topic Early Sheerin History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


A great number of Irish families left their homeland in the late 18th century and throughout the 19th century, migrating to such far away lands as Australia and North America. The early settlers left after much planning and deliberation. They were generally well off but they desired a tract of land that they could farm solely for themselves. The great mass of immigrants to arrive on North American shores in the 1840s differed greatly from their predecessors because many of them were utterly destitute, selling all they had to gain a passage on a ship or having their way paid by a philanthropic society. These Irish people were trying to escape the aftermath of the Great Potato Famine: poverty, starvation, disease, and, for many, ultimately death. Those that arrived on North American shores were not warmly welcomed by the established population, but they were vital to the rapid development of the industry, agriculture, and infrastructure of the infant nations of the United States and what would become Canada. Early passenger and immigration lists reveal many Irish settlers bearing the name Sheerin:

Sheerin Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Daniel, Edward, Hugh, Patrick and Thomas Sheerin who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1804 and 1864
  • Danl Sheerin, aged 24, arrived in New Castle or Philadelphia in 1804
  • Bridget Sheerin, aged 25, who emigrated to the United States from Donegal, in 1893
  • Dan. Sheerin, aged 20, who emigrated to America from Donegal, in 1893

Sheerin Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Sheerin, aged 44, who landed in America, in 1904
  • Delia Sheerin, aged 18, who landed in America from Carrow Castle, in 1905
  • Johanna Sheerin, aged 24, who emigrated to the United States from Malahide, Ireland, in 1909
  • Elizabeth Sheerin, aged 19, who landed in America from Duleek, Ireland, in 1911
  • Katie Sheerin, aged 19, who landed in America from Swinford, Ireland, in 1911


  • S. P. Sheerin, American Democrat politician, Member of Democratic National Committee from Indiana, 1888
  • Mike Sheerin, Toronto-based documentary director and producer
  • Brendan Sheerin, British International Tour guide
  • Joe Sheerin (b. 1979), English former professional footballer
  • Paul George Sheerin (b. 1974), Scottish professional football player and manager


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. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  3. Grehan, Ida. Dictionary of Irish Family Names. Boulder: Roberts Rinehart, 1997. Print. (ISBN 1-57098-137-X).
  4. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  5. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  6. Land Owners in Ireland. Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1203-3).
  7. Tepper, Michael Ed & Elizabeth P. Bentley Transcriber. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800-1819. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1986. Print.
  8. O'Hart, John. Irish Pedigress 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4).
  9. MacLysaght, Edward. Mores Irish Familes. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-0126-0).
  10. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  11. ...

The Sheerin Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Sheerin 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 7 January 2016 at 13:16.

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