Wogan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

When the Strongbownian's arrived in Ireland there was already a system for creating patronymic names in place. Therefore, the native population regarded many of the Anglo-Norman naming practices that these settlers were accustomed to as rather unusual. Despite their differences, the two different systems eventually merged together rather insidiously. The Strongbownians, when they arrived, displayed a preference for used nickname surnames. Two of the most prevalent forms were oath nicknames and imperative names. Oath names often carried blessings or were formed from habitual expressions. Imperative names, formed from a verb added to a noun or an adverb, metaphorically described the bearer's occupations. The nick name surname Wogan is derived from a nickname for a person who wore a habitual expression of discontent or unhappiness. The surname Wogan is derived from the Welsh word gwgan, which is a diminutive of gwg, which means frown or scowl. The Gaelic form of the surname is Ugán.

Early Origins of the Wogan family

The surname Wogan was first found in Pembrokeshire in southern Wales. However, it is believed that they were descended from Gwrgyn, the Lord of Bryn in the county of Denbigh in north Wales. Very early in the family's history, an important branch were granted lands by Strongbow, Earl of Pembroke, in his invasion of Ireland in 1172 and thus began the dual country origins of the name. The progenitor of the family is believed to be Gwgan Ap, Lord of Brecknock, one of whose descendants married the heiress of Wiston, who was a descendant of Wizo the Fleming, Lord of Daugleddy.

One of the first on record was Sir John Wogan (d. 1321?), Chief Justice and Governor of Ireland. He was the son of "Sir Matthew Wogan (by Avicia, heiress of Walter Malephant), and great-grandson of Gwgan, son of Bleddyn ap Maenarch, Lord of Brecknock. Gwgan, whose name in course of time was softened into Wogan, married Gwenllian, the heiress of Wiston in Pembrokeshire, where his descendants were subsequently settled. " [1]

Early History of the Wogan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wogan research. Another 51 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1542, 1448, 1542, 1556, 1543, 1554, 1588, 1644, 1621, 1622, 1625, 1629, 1640, 1644, 1620, 1625, 1648, 1649, 1702, 1672, 1638, 1708, 1679, 1685, 1700, 1681, 1685, 1678, 1758, 1317, 1321, 1295, 1313, 1317, 1650, 1716 and 1654 are included under the topic Early Wogan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wogan 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 Wogan included: Vogan, Wogan, Vogin, Vogen, Voggan, Woggan, Woggin, Woggen, Woggon, Voggon, Voygan, Voigan, Woigan, Woiggan, Wogand, Vogand, Vogant, Wogant, Woggant and many more.

Early Notables of the Wogan family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Sir Henry Wogan, steward of the earldom of Pembroke in 1448; Sir John Wogan, a gentleman usher of the king's chamber and was granted certain offices in Pembrokeshire and Cardiganshire in consideration of his services in England and abroad, Sheriff of Cardiganshire in 1542 and 1556, and of Pembrokeshire in 1543 and 1554; Sir John Wogan (1588-1644) a Welsh politician, Member of Parliament for Pembrokeshire (1621-1622), (1625-1629) and (1640-1644); and his son, Thomas Wogan (born circa 1620), a Welsh Member of Parliament and one of the regicides...
Another 97 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wogan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Wogan family to Ireland

Some of the Wogan family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 157 words (11 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Wogan migration to the United States +

Ireland experienced a dramatic decrease in its population during the 19th century. This was in a great measure, a response to England's imperialistic policies. Hunger and disease took the lives of many Irish people and many more chose to leave their homeland to escape the horrific conditions. North America with its promise of work, freedom, and land was an extremely popular destination for Irish families. For those families that survived the journey, all three of these things were often attained through much hard work and perseverance. Research into early immigration and passenger lists revealed many immigrants bearing the name Wogan:

Wogan Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • George Wogan, who settled in Virginia in 1663
Wogan Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • William Wogan, who landed in Virginia in 1701 [2]
Wogan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Patrick Wogan, who arrived in New York State in 1804
  • Patrick Wogan, aged 20, who arrived in New York, NY in 1804 [2]
  • Christian Wogan, who landed in New York, NY in 1810 [2]
  • Nicholas Wogan, aged 46, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1850 [2]
  • John Wogan, who settled in Philadelphia in 1867

Canada Wogan migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Wogan Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • John Christopher Wogan, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1786

Contemporary Notables of the name Wogan (post 1700) +

  • Thomas F. Wogan, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1916, 1920, 1924, 1928, 1932; Member of New York Democratic State Committee, 1930
  • Maurice Wogan Jr., American politician, Candidate for Mayor of Amarillo, Texas, 1951
  • Christopher R. Wogan (b. 1950), American former politician, Republican member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (1981-2002)
  • Lawrence William "Larry" Wogan (1890-1979), Australian rugby union player who played from 1913 to 1924 for the Wallabies
  • Sir Michael Terence Wogan KBE, DL (1938-2016), more commonly known as Terry Wogan, an Irish radio and television broadcaster for the BBC
  • Thomas Wogan (d. 1781), Irish miniature painter
  • Robert Wogan (1768-1782), Irish miniature painter
  • James Wogan Remnant CVO (1930-2022), 3rd Baron Remnant, a British hereditary peer and banker, Member of the House of Lords from 1967 to 1999
  • Sir Francis Wogan Festing (b. 1902), British field marshal
  • Wogan S. Badcock, American founder of Badcock Home Furniture, now a chain of over 320 furniture stores in 1904

  1. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  2. ^ 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)

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