What is the origin of the last name Sheehan?

The last name Sheehan finds its origin in Ireland, particularly among the Gaelic-speaking population. It is derived from the Irish surname Ó Síocháin, meaning "descendant of Síochán." The personal name Síochán is believed to be derived from the word síocháin, which translates to "peace" or "tranquility" in English. Over time, the anglicized version of the surname evolved to Sheehan, reflecting the pronunciation in English. The name is commonly found in the counties of Cork, Kerry, and Limerick in Ireland, and has been carried by many notable individuals throughout history.

Countries of origin for the last name Sheehan

SHEEHAN is a last name of Irish origin. Derived from the Irish Gaelic surname Ó Síodhacháin, it is a patronymic name meaning “descendant of Síodhacháin.” The prefix “Ó” indicates “descendant of” and “Síodhacháin” is a Gaelic personal name derived from the word “síothach,” meaning “peaceful.” This surname is primarily found in County Cork and County Kerry in southwestern Ireland.

Irish surnames often reflect the history and geography of the country, and SHEEHAN is no exception. It is believed that the earliest members of the SHEEHAN family were inhabitants of the ancient kingdom of Munster, which encompassed parts of modern-day County Kerry and County Cork. The surname became associated with these regions and has remained most prevalent there.

Throughout history, the SHEEHAN family has played a significant role in Irish society. Many Sheehans were prominent Gaelic poets, musicians, and scholars. The name also holds religious significance, as several Sheehans have become respected priests and bishops in the Catholic Church.

Migration from Ireland to other parts of the world has led to the spread of the SHEEHAN surname beyond its original homeland. Today, individuals with the last name SHEEHAN can be found in various countries, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

In the United States, the SHEEHAN name can be traced back to the early 19th century when Irish immigrants sought new opportunities in the country. They brought with them their cultural heritage and their surnames, including SHEEHAN. Over time, the name has become well-established and integrated into American society.

SHEEHAN is a surname that carries a sense of pride and identity for those who bear it. It is a tangible link to an ancestral past and a reminder of their Irish heritage. Individuals with the last name SHEEHAN may often feel a deep connection to their roots and may actively engage in genealogical research to uncover more about their family history.

While the facts surrounding the SHEEHAN surname are well-documented, there are still untold stories and undiscovered connections waiting to be explored. The study of genealogy and name etymology continually reveals new insights, shedding light on the lives of generations past. The SHEEHAN name, like many others, offers a glimpse into the rich tapestry of human history and the enduring legacy of family.

Interesting facts about the last name Sheehan

  • The surname Sheehan is of Irish origin.
  • It is an anglicized form of the Gaelic name Ó Síocháin, which is derived from the word “síocháin” meaning “peace”.
  • The Sheehan name is primarily found in the Munster region of Ireland, particularly in County Cork.
  • The Sheehan family is believed to be descended from a powerful Gaelic clan called the Eóganachta, who ruled over the Kingdom of Munster from the 6th to the 10th century.
  • Many Sheehans emigrated from Ireland during the 19th and early 20th centuries, particularly to the United States, Australia, and Canada, due to factors such as the Irish Potato Famine and the search for better economic opportunities.
  • The surname Sheehan has several variant spellings, including Sheahan, Sheehy, O’Sheehan, and O’Sheahan.
  • Sheehan is a relatively common surname in Ireland, but it is less common in other parts of the world.
  • The name Sheehan is often used as a given name for boys in Ireland.
  • Notable individuals with the surname Sheehan include politicians, writers, musicians, and sportspeople.
  • The Sheehan coat of arms features a shield with three lions rampant and a crest with an arm holding a dagger.

Name Rank


There are around 26902 people with the last name Sheehan in the US

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