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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Where did the Scottish McKellar family come from? What is the Scottish McKellar family crest and coat of arms? When did the McKellar family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the McKellar family history?

Among the the peoples of ancient Scotland, the first to use the name McKellar were the Strathclyde- Britons. McKellar was a name for someone who lived at Keilor, in Angus.


Medieval Scottish names are rife with spelling variations. This is due to the fact that scribes in that era spelled according to the sound of words, rather than any set of rules. McKellar has been spelled Keller, Kellar, Keeler, Keilor, Keiler, Keillor, Keiller, Kelour, MacKeller and many more.

First found in Angus (Gaelic: Aonghas), part of the Tayside region of northeastern Scotland, and present day Council Area of Angus, formerly known as Forfar or Forfarshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McKellar research. Another 249 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1476, 1383 and 1797 are included under the topic Early McKellar History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early McKellar Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the McKellar family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 57 words(4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Many Scots were left with few options other than to leave their homeland for the colonies across the Atlantic. Some of these families fought to defend their newfound freedom in the American War of Independence. Others went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of these families have recently been able to rediscover their roots through Clan societies and other Scottish organizations. Among them:

McKellar Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Archibald McKellar, who landed in New York, NY in 1738
  • Charles McKellar, who arrived in New York in 1738

McKellar Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • John McKellar, who arrived in New York in 1841
  • Jean McKellar, who landed in New York in 1855
  • Angus McKellar, aged 24, landed in New York in 1864


  • Danica Mae McKellar (b. 1975), American actress, author, and education advocate
  • Kenneth Douglas McKellar (1869-1957), American politician from Tennessee
  • Crystal Dawn Scripps McKellar (b. 1976), American attorney and former child actress
  • Kenneth McKellar (1927-2010), Scottish tenor
  • Squadron Leader Archibald Ashmore "Archie" McKellar DSO DFC & Bar (1912-1940), Scottish flying ace in the Royal Air Force (RAF) credited with 22 aerial victories, killed in action
  • Craig McKellar (b. 1949), former Australian rules footballer
  • Don McKellar (b. 1963), Canadian Drama Desk Award winning actor, writer, and filmmaker from Toronto
  • Phil McKellar, Australian record producer
  • Archibald McKellar (1816-1894), Scottish-born, Canadian politician, Leader of Canada 's Ontario Liberal Party from 1867 to 1868
  • Malcolm Earl McKellar (1918-1976), politician in Manitoba, Canada



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  1. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and Don Pottinger. Clan Map Scotland of Old. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1983. Print.
  2. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Scotch Irish Pioneers In Ulster and America. Montana: Kessinger Publishing. Print.
  3. Catholic Directory For Scotland. Glasgow: Burns Publications. Print.
  4. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  5. Martine, Roddy, Roderick Martine and Don Pottinger. Scottish Clan and Family Names Their Arms, Origins and Tartans. Edinburgh: Mainstream, 1992. Print.
  6. Bain, Robert. The Clans and Tartans of Scotland. Glasgow & London: Collins, 1968. Print. (ISBN 000411117-6).
  7. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  8. Scarlett, James D. Tartan The Highland Textile. London: Shepheard-Walwyn, 1990. Print. (ISBN 0-85683-120-4).
  9. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  11. ...

The McKellar Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The McKellar Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 3 April 2014 at 10:31.

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