Sheehan Family History
The Sheehan ancient family history was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. Variants of the Irish name Sheehan include Sheahan, Sheen and Shine. These names are derived from the Gaelic O'Siodhachain sept that was located in County Limerick in the west of the country. A sept or clan was a collective term describing a group of persons whose immediate ancestors bore a common surname and inhabited the same territory. There were two main septs, the first of which was of the Ui Maine, and who were hereditary trumpeters to the O'Kellys in mediaeval times. The second sept was of Dalcassian origin, their Chief being seated at Lower Connello in Limerick. Distinguished persons of the name include Canon Patrick Augustine Sheehan, 1852-1913, who was author of 'My New Castle', and Michael Sheehan, 1870-1945, who was Archbishop of Sydney. In modern times the majority of Sheehans are found in Counties Cork, Kerry and Limerick.The Sheehan 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 Sheehan descendants.