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Meagher, Magher, Maher, Mahar, Marr
  • 157 members

About us

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 About This Group -> Results (i.e., discussion of Y-DNA results)

Ancestral Homeland

Map of Ireland at google sitesOur project results may eventually provide hints for Meaghers/Mahers/Mahars still searching for clues about their geographical roots. Some of us may feel confident only in stating that our ancestor came from Ireland. The next step might be to try to determine the county of origin. On the map of Ireland on the left, the red area in the northeast corner of County Tipperary is the barony of Ikerrin, the ancestral homeland of the O'Meagher clan. Eight counties share a border with Tipperary. The two counties adjacent to Ikerrin are Offaly (formerly Kings) on the north and Laois (formerly Queens) on the northeast. The other neighboring counties: Kilkenny on the east; Waterford on the southeast, bordering along the River Suir; Cork and Limerick on the southwest and west; and Clare and Galway on the northwest, across the River Shannon. According to Hayes, “The mass emigrations of the 19th and 20th centuries and modern mobility have greatly widened the diaspora of the Meaghers and Mahers. Despite that, the descendants of the Ikerrin clan are still most numerous in Tipperary, where some 50 per cent of the 8,000 who bear the name in Ireland live.” Hayes proposes that the older Meagher spelling was more often retained by “descendants of members of the clan who settled outside the O Meagher tuath of Ikerrin before the Cromwellian confiscations.”

Recent YDNA developments and the latest results introduce the possibility of verifying ancient clan relationships in the area. For example, it is interesting to compare and contrast the full spectrum of our results with those for the Ely Carroll geographical project. About that, Hayes also writes that Ikerrin "... was a division of the ancient kingdom of Éile, which stretched over southern Offaly and most of north Tipperary, and which was ruled over by the O'Carrolls ..." (Some references describe the clan relationship in the area more amicably as "akin.")


Hayes, William J., “O Meagher, Meagher and Maher — and their dispersal in Tipperary,” Tipperary Historical Journal 1993, pp. 160-166. An extensive extract from the Hayes article appears at the rootsweb Maher surname site.