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The Irish Rose

Shannon Name History

Shannon Irish Coat of Arms


Shannon, MacShannon, and O'Shannon are Anglicised Irish and Scottish surnames that derive from the Scots word seanachaidh, which means "skilled storyteller". Seanachaidh is a corruption of the Old Irish word senchaid. Other forms of the name are Gilshenan and Giltennen. It is also believed to be connected to O'Shawnessey or O'Shannahan families. Several old Gaelic names of Scottish and Irish people alike were Anglicised as Shannon, despite being unrelated. Shannon as a surname first appears in records in Kintyre, which was the family seat.

The 1990 United States Census found that Shannon was a very common surname (#679 out of 88,799) in the United States.

Variant spellings of the Irish surname Shannon are Shennan, Shannane, and others.

Details about Shannons in Ireland

The Shannons were an influential family in Ireland. We are honored to offer two framed documents that provide more details on the Shannon surname and coat of arms. The Framed Irish Family Name History and Framed Irish Coat of Arms & Family History are heirloom-quality framed prints that describe the Shannon family history in detail.

Shannon is one of the many Irish family crests and surnames available on clothing, glassware, home decor, and other quality gifts. See the Irish coat of arms page on for family crest ideas and products.

Is there a Shannon's Pub in Ireland?

There are pubs in the town of Shannon, County Clare and there are pubs in Carrick-on-Shannon, the county town of County Leitrim, and there is at least one pub named Shannon. If you're near Foynes in County Limerick, visit Shannon House, a traditional, family-owned pub. If you find more Shannon's Pubs in your Ireland travels, let us know!

If you can't visit in person, our personalized pub gifts are the next best thing!

Notable people named Shannon


  • David Shannon (born 1960), American author
  • Del Shannon (1934–-1990), American rock and roll musician
  • Frank Shannon, (1874-1959), Irish-American actor and writer
  • James Jebusa Shannon (1862–-1923), Anglo-American painter
  • Johnny Shannon (born 1932), English actor
  • Mem Shannon (born 1959), American blues singer-guitarist
  • Molly Shannon (born 1964), American actress
  • Richard Shannon (born 1954), American writer
  • Shannon (born 1939), once-off stage name of English singer and songwriter Marty Wilde
  • Shannon (singer) (born 1958), stage name of singer Shannon Brenda Greene
  • Sharon Shannon (born 1968), Irish musician
  • T. Sean Shannon (fl. 2000s), American performer and writer
  • Terry Shannon (1952-–2005), American engineer and writer
  • Tommy Shannon (born 1946), American bassist best known for backing Johnny Winter and Stevie Ray Vaughan
  • Shannon Magrane (born 1995), On American Idol


  • Bob Shannon (Radio) (born 1942), Canadian journalist
  • Bob Shannon (WCBS-FM) (born 1948), American journalist
  • George W. Shannon (1914–-1998), American journalist
  • Mark Shannon (born c. 1950), American journalist
  • Paul Shannon (1909-–1990), American journalist
  • Scott Shannon (fl. c. late 20th century), American journalist
  • William V. Shannon (1927–-1988), American journalist

Military personnel

  • Dave Shannon (1922-1993), Australian airman


  • David Shannon (1822-1875), South Australian politician
  • George Shannon (explorer) (1785–-1836), explorer and U.S. Senator
  • Frank Shannon (politics), unchosen politician and journalist
  • Howard Huntley Shannon (1892-1976), Australian politician
  • James Shannon (born 1952), American politician
  • James Shannon, (1840-1891), South Australian politician
  • John Wallace Shannon (1862-1926), South Australian politician
  • Peter Shannon (born 1949), Australian diplomat
  • Richard C. Shannon (1839-–1920), US Representative from New York
  • Steve Shannon (born 1971), American politician
  • Thomas A. Shannon, Jr. (born c. 1960), American diplomat


  • Claude Shannon (1916–-2001), American mathematician and electrical engineer, the originator of Information Theory
  • Frederick A. Shannon (1921-–1965), American biologist


  • Darryl Shannon (born 1968), Canadian hockey player
  • Frank Shannon (baseball) (1873-1934), American baseball player
  • Les Shannon (1926-–2007), English football player and manager
  • Mike Shannon (born 1939), American baseball player and journalist
  • Rab Shannon, Scottish footballer
  • Randy Shannon (born 1966), American football coach
  • Shannon (born 1975), one of many ring names of American wrestler Shannon Spruill

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