Clan History & Genealogy

Around the world people of Scottish descent celebrate their ancestral roots in many different ways, some do so by attending clan gatherings, others take a trip to their local annual highland games, whilst many do so by supporting one of the many Scottish based Associations and Societies. More recently the Tartan Day celebrations were conceived as a celebration of Scotland and to increase the bonds of friendship between the homeland and those of Scottish descent.

Many people who claim Scottish descent closely associate themselves with a particular Scottish clan.

No more is this true than outside of Scotland where membership of clan associations is taken up enthusiastically by those wishing to associate themselves with their Scottish descendants and who in some way want to connect with their ancestral homeland. The word clann means children or family in Gaelic.  A clan can be described as a community that lived in a geographical location under the protection of a clan chief.  Members of this community could be related to the chief by blood or they could have been inhabitants upon his lands.  The members of the community, or clansmen, gave their loyalty to the clan chief and in return he gave them protection, justice, and leadership.


The Chief was the head of the clan and this role was usually inherited by the eldest son from a legal union although this was not always what happened, infighting and civil strife were at times known to follow the death of a chief.


A person can be considered a member of a clan if they bear the surname or if they offer allegiance to the clan chief who has accepted this allegiance, however, in the past anyone living on a given chief’s land was considered to be part of the clan.

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