Monaghan Family History
The ancient origin of the name Monaghan was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. The name Monahan or Monaghan, the latter is the more usual spelling in Ireland, is chiefly to be found in the Counties of Galway, Mayo and Fermanagh, all of which are not far from the original habitat of the O'Monaghans, being that part of County Roscommon which lies between Elphin and Jamestown. The variant of this name is Monks. The Four Masters record O'Monaghan, O'Manachain in Irish, as Lord of the Three Tuathas of Roscommon in 1287. The Manachan from whom the family takes its name was a famous Connaught warrior of the ninth century. The Irish-American poet James Henry Monaghan, 1804-1878, County Galway, was notable as the prosecutor of William Smith O'Brien, who was the famous Fenian prisoner.The Monaghan family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including Monaghan descendants.