The Irish surname Leahy is an anglicized form of the Gaelic name Ó Laochdha meaning “descendant of Laochdha,” a personal name derived from laochmeaning “hero.” The family, originally from counties Cork Tipperary and Clare, was dispersed in the period after 1603, when they joined the famous rebellion of that year lead by Lord O'Neill. This ended in disastrous defeat at the battle of Kinsale, and the end of Irish hopes of self government for three centuries. The name is first recorded in the New World in 1772 when Catherine Leahy arrived in New Jersey. Today there are approximately 11,000 bearers of the name Leahy living in the US.
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