b- your're the only one, so far, that has a gaelic spelling of the surname raftery that i was given by my father. my father gave me reachtara. i looked it up as best i could and this is what i extrapolated. r/ (ea)= a/ (ch)= f/tara (i know this is not clear); so if you transliterate you get raftara or raftery; it is pretty common knowlege that tara universally means "earth"; in fact in many sci-fi stories about a parallel planet to our own, the other planet is named "tara". in "gone w/the wind" the plantation was named "tara" where the plantation owners were Irish and I presume they were naming the plantation "earth" in gaelic, otherwise known as "tara". now, as far as i could ascertain, the (ea) and (ch)in the gaelic alphabet are our own (e) and (d)respectively, which then translates into "Red Earth". Understanding how surnames were usually descriptive names of the type of work, lifestyle or endeavor of the family as a whole, I am (again) presuming the surname Raftery means we were potato farmers. I have a hunch, though, that many Raftery's were and continue to be "on the fringe of the law" ha-ha!! what we actually need is a person who knows how to read and translate the gaelic language.
what i still don't get is the connection between rafferty and raftery. my father told me there is no connection. just that raftery being the lesser known name, a lot of otherwise raftery's became rafferty's vis-a-vis immigration officials.
i did wonder if the tennis player known as rafter was in fact raftery, so thank you for that info'.
i will look forward to any other info regarding our surname you may discover as you go along.