Origin of the Name O'Hara
The ancient history of the name O'Hara
was found in the allfamilycrests.com archives.
Over the centuries Surnames developed a wide number of variants. Different spellings of the same name can be traced back to an original root. Additionally when a bearer of a name emigrated it was not uncommon that their original name would be incorrectly transcribed in the record books at their new location. Surnames were also often altered over the years based on how they sounded phonetically and depending on the prevailing political conditions it may have been advantageous to change a name from one language to another.
Variants of the name O'Hara
include O'Hora, Hora, Hare, Hair and Haire. This famous Irish sept is descended from Eaghra, who was Chief of Leyny in County Sligo. In 1350 they formed two divisions, the Chiefs of which were called O'Hara Boy and O'Hara Reagh. O'Hara Boy was seated at Collooney and O'Hara Reagh at Ballyharry. A branch of this sept migrated to Antrim. The famous manuscript known as 'The Book of O'Hara' is still in existence and contains a full record of Chiefs of the name. In the 1800's they were extensive landlords. In Cooper's Hill and Annaghmore they possessed more than 21,000 acres and this family is still of importance in that area. The variant O'Hora is mostly found in Connacht Province, which is still the traditional home of the O'Haras.
The O'Hara coat of arms came into existence centuries ago. The process of creating coats of arms (also often called family crests) began in the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this. The new art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own coat of arms, including all O'Hara descendants.