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About the study

The OGAN One-Name study commenced December 2010. Like many one-name studies, it grew out of an attempt to trace my own ancestry. OGAN has been a favorite name to research, and after reaching a dead-end in the mid 1700s in Virginia, I created the OGAN DNA Project to assist in finding other cousins. After over forty years of research, I have accumulated a great deal of data on many OGAN families.

You can aid the goals of the OGAN One-Name Study by submitting your info, pedigree, and/or research to this email me at:

Variant names

The OGAN DNA project has proved that in some cases the variants OGEN and OGIN are related. My mother indicated that the name was OOGAN before reaching the United States, and hopefully this can be tested. Other variants will be studied and considered later, but for now...

The OGAN One-Name Study will research the variants: .......OGEN, OGIN, and OOGAN


Visit the OGAN DNA Project

Name origin

As the OGAN surname appears to have several origins, this study will investigate the various origins through extended research and DNA testing to determine their validity.

***** OGAN from Turkey Public Profiler World Names indicates that OGAN is a Muslim name from Turkey, and that the OGEN spelling is European. The origins of the other spellings are not known by this source.

***** OGAN in Ireland According to The Internet Surname Database The Little Book of Irish Clans by John Grenham, OGAN was a descendant of an uncle of Brian Boru, High King of Ireland (1002-1014), who lived in the 10th century literally means "€œyoung man"€.

The following lineage appears in John O'€™Hart'€™s Irish Pedigrees; or the Origin and Stem of the Irish Nation (1892, reprinted by the Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, Md., 1989, p. 307fn) for the HOGAN line up to the first indication of OGAN, thus showing an Irish connection. HOGAN derives from this OGAN. The book states:

Cosgrach, brother of Cindeidh kenneth or kenneda of the O'€™Brien pedigree, was the ancestor of O'€™hOgain, of Munster. The lineage:

104. Cosgrach: son of Lorcan: a quo Cosgrave, of Munster
105. Aitheir: his son.
106. OGAN: his son.

***** WOGAN and HOGAN are possible connections to OGAN The WOGAN surname has also been recorded as OGAN according to The Internet Surname Database. Before the 7th century, the surname derived from a personal name "€œwagan," and as a surname it is believed to be English, Irish, and Welsh. It is first recorded in 1292 in the county of Cumberland, England when John Wagan appears in the charters known as 'Placita de quo warranto', and later in Yorkshire in 1297 when John Wougan, who could possibly be the same person, appears in the Ministers Accounts of the earldom of Cornwall. In Ireland the name is first recorded in 1317 during the reign of the famous King Henry V (1314 - 1322).

Modern forms of WOGAN are OGAN, OUGAN, and OOGAN and are found in counties Louth and Dublin. OGAN and OWGAN appears in the 1659 census in the barony of Shelburne, Wexford. The form UGAN appears in Cork. This name is written as U'€™GAN in Irish (pronounced Oogawn).

Rev. Patrick Woulfe's Sloinnte Gaedheal is Gall (Irish names & surnames) Dublin 1923 states that various spellings of O'€™HOGAN and HOGAN is from a descendant of OGAN who descended from Coscrach, the uncle of Brian Bora. The line of HOGAN was a Dalcassian family and were seated at Ardcrony, about four miles north of Negagh in Co. Tipperary. There is also a family in Corca Laoighdhe, in southwest Cork and the name is very common in Musnter, Limerick, Clare, and Cork.

He further states that UGAN, OWGAN, WOGANE, OUGAN, OOGAN, OGAN, WOGAN, and VEGAN are Welsh and derived from "€œgwgan"€ which cmes from "€œgwg"€ meaning a frown or scowl. The WOGANs settled in Kildare after the Anglo-Norman invasion with Rathcoffey being their county seat.

The Surnames of Ireland by Edward MacLysaght (Irish Academic Press, Dublin, sixth Edition, reprinted 1999) agrees with Woulfe that OGAN and OOGAN are synonyms of WOGAN in Louth and Dublin.

Coat of Arms and Motto There are two Blazon of Arms described for the OGAN Clan. The ancient arms are described as sable on a chief gold three annulets of the field (another the tinctures reversed). Edward MacLysaght's Irish Families: Their Names, Arms and Origin, (New York: Crown Publishers, 1972) similarly describes the O’HOGAN arms as sable on a chief gold three annulets of the field. In O'€™Hart (1989) the arms is described: Black, three lions passant in pale gold each holding between the forepaws an esquire'€™s helmet proper. Crest: A dexter arm in armor embowed, the hand grasping a sword all proper. The motto Fulminus instar translates "€œLike Lightning"€.

Future research may focus on the surnames HOGAN and WOGAN as being related to the various OGAN lineages.

***** Given all this, surname origins must be viewed in terms of the surname location, information found though research, and by DNA testing which determines what families are related and which evolve from the same origins. All three areas must work together to determine the source of the surname for any given family as the surname may have several origins.

Through the OGAN DNA project, testing has determined that several families which were suspected to relate in the United States do have a common ancestor. To date, all of those tested are from a haplogroup considered Western European. In order to find the origins of the surname, more testing from other countries is needed.

History of the name

The earliest OGAN found in America is William OGAN who arrived in 1678, having sailed aboard the 'St. George' from Waterford, Ireland to Baltimore. Several William OGANs and a William WOGAN appear in Maryland and Virginia between 1678 and 1722.

***** Maryland

ca 1675 Early Settlers of Maryland: Index to Names of Early Immigrants complied from Land patents, 1633-1680 in Hall of Records, Annapolis, MD by Gust Skordas, 1968, Genealogical Publishing Company, page 341

William OGAN Liber 15 Folio 553 (Book 15, page 553)

1677 St. George - London - Waterford - Maryland - Oct 7, 1677

Following is the passenger list for the St. George, a merchant ship that sailed from Waterford, Ireland to Maryland (don't know what port) in 1677, carrying 180 passengers.

'Oct. 7 (1677) Portsmouth. Ralegh Hull to Robert Yard. This morning sailed from Spithead the St. George of London for Waterford and thence for Maryland, wind N. E.'

On November 1, 1678, John Quigley, a merchant captain, not the captain of the ship, appeared before the Secretary of Maryland and applied for land warrants for transporting 180 settlers into the province on the ship St. George of London.

....William OGAN....

(MY NOTE: Quigley applied for land warrants. I'€™m not sure the ship took a year to arrive.)

***** Virginia

1688 Record 870. 19 Dec 1688-- Jno OGEN, servt to Dennis Eyes, is adjudged to be fourteen years of age and ordered to serve his sd master according to act.

OB 1678-98. Part 2- 447.

Ref: Records of Indentured Servants and of Certificates for Land, Northumberland County, VA, 1650-1795, compiled by W. Preston Haynie Bowie, MD, Heritage Books, 1996. Library of Congress Call No. F232 87 H395 1996

1696 Record 980. 15 July 1696 - €”Certificate is granted Mr Denis Eyes for five hundred fifty acres of Land for the Importation of eleven persons into this colony. The said Eyes having made oath in Court he never made use of any said rights.

Tho. Aldwell................Margt May

Barbara Jackson...........Isabell Mason

Jane Thompson............Wm Twison

Teige Mackdanell..........Kath Smith

Gillicrest Oheart............Jno OGAN

Samll Camell

OB 1678-908, Part 2, 733.

Ref: Records of Indentured Servants and of Certificates for Land, Northumberland County, VA, 1650-1795, compiled by W. Preston Haynie Bowie, MD, Heritage Books, 1996. Library of Congress Call No. F232 87 H395 1996

(Northumberland is North of the Rappahannock River on the Chesapeake Bay and next to Westmoreland County. Northumberland County was a fairly stable county in 1688; that is, it was not chopped up to make other counties, etc.)

Name frequency

The OGAN surname is rather rare. The 1891 England and Wales Census Records lists 94 persons with the OGAN spelling and the 1920 United States Federal census lists 295. Other spellings are a fraction of those numbers.

Distribution of the name

The heaviest concentration of OGANs is in the United States with the United Kingdom being next.

According to the 1891 England and Wales Census Records, the dominant area for the OGAN surname spelling is in London with 39% (37 or 94) with Lancaster being next at 23% (22 of 94), followed by Staffordshire (13%, 12 of 94) and Yorkshire (10%, 9 of 94). Lesser volume is found in Essex, Debryshire, Cheshire, Shropshire, Gloucestershire, Kent, and Surry.

The OGAN surname in the United States is centered in several areas. According to the 1920 census, California has 13% with 38 of 295, and Ohio has 13% with 37 of 295. These are followed by Iowa at 7% (22 of 295), Missouri at 7% (21 of 295), Illinois at 5% (18 of 295), Missouri at 7% (21 of 295, Illinois at 6% (18 of 295), Washington at 6% (17 of 295), Kansas at 5% (15 of 295), New Jersey at 4% (13 of 295), Oklahoma at 4% (12 of 295), Pennsylvania at 4% (11 of 295), Indiana at 4% (11 of 295). Lesser states include: Texas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Kentucky, Tennessee, New York, Virginia, Arkansas, Louisiana, Hawaii, Idaho, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Colorado, Oregon, Connecticut, Montana, West Virginia, and South Carolina.

OGAN is also found in Germany (Nordrhein-Westfallen, Bayern, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland, Niedershassen, Schleswig-Holstein, Vlaanderen, Hamburg), Poland (Slaskie, Kujawsko-Pomorskie), and Argentina (The Pampas, Gran Chaco, and Cuyo) according to Public Profiler World Names


Although many deeds, wills, and marriage records have been collected on several of the families in the DNA project, every effort will be made to expand that research to encompass records from various areas and put into organized databases before uploading to the Guild archive.

You can aid the goals of the OGAN One-Name Study by submitting your info, pedigree, and/or research to this project by emailing me at:


The OGAN Y-DNA project began August 28, 2004. Several lineages which were suspected to be related were proved to be, although two were not related. There are many more lines to test, especially in the United Kingdom and Ireland in order to determine the ancestral home of those lineages in the United States.

Given that several origins for the OGAN surname have been suggested by various sources, it is important to use DNA testing to determine which families are related in order to determine their origin. By triangulating the lineages of those who test and through diligent research, it may be possible to clarify which lines of OGAN came from what areas, and, thus, discover the source of the name for a particular family.

Any male bearing the surname or variant (HOGAN, OGAN, OGEN, OGIN, OGUN, OOGAN, O'OGAN, OUGAN, OWGAN, WOGAN) spelling or any male who suspects the biological father is an OGAN or a variant may test. A 37 marker or 67 marker test is suggested in order to clarify close relationships. A test may be ordered by clicking on the Family Tree DNA logo at My genetic genealogy blog. Click here to see The OGAN Y-DNA Project

A scholarship fund has been established to assist in locating testers whose lines may help in discovering the origins of the surname.

Project Goals:

(1.) To test descendants with the surname OGAN (and variant spellings) to help determine relationships among the various family groups.

(2.) To provide another method of breaking down our genealogical brick walls.

(3.) To assist researchers in finding genealogical cousins with whom they can join forces to further their lineage.