Show ContentsAlloway History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

In Scottish history, few names go farther back than Alloway, whose ancestors lived among the clans of the Pictish tribe. The ancestors of the Alloway family lived in Aberdeen but originally from Clackmannan. The name may be derived from the Gaelic alla which means wild and mhagh which means field.

Early Origins of the Alloway family

The surname Alloway was first found in the county of Clackmannanshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Chlach Mhannainn), nicknamed the "wee county," it is the smallest Council Area of Scotland, located in southeastern Scotland. According to Black, the most likely source of their origin was Alloa in the Aberdeen area. [1]

The first recorded spelling of the name was Alleway, about the year 1359. Alloway is a former Scottish village that is now a suburb of Ayr, best known as the birthplace of Robert Burns and the setting for his poem "Tam o' Shanter." In North America, the word Alloway is a Delaware Indian term meaning "beautiful tail" and refers to the black fox.

Early History of the Alloway family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Alloway research. Another 98 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1440 and 1772 are included under the topic Early Alloway History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Alloway Spelling Variations

Although Medieval Scotland lacked a basic set of spelling rules, which meant that scribes recorded names according to their sounds it was not uncommon for the names of a father and son to be recorded differently. As a result, there are many spelling variations of Scottish single names. Alloway has been written Alloway, Alleway, Aloveious, Alloweious, Allaway, Alliway, Alloway, Aloway, Alaway, Aleway, Alewy, Alloways, Allawy, Aylwey and many more.

Early Notables of the Alloway family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Alloway Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Alloway Ranking

In the United States, the name Alloway is the 10,681st most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [2]

Ireland Migration of the Alloway family to Ireland

Some of the Alloway family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 32 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Alloway migration to the United States +

Thousands of Scots left their home country to travel to Ireland or Australia, or to cross the Atlantic for the North American colonies. The difficult crossing was an enormous hurdle, but those who survived found freedom and opportunity in ample measure. Some Scots even fought for their freedom in the American War of Independence. This century, their ancestors have become aware of the illustrious history of the Scots in North America and at home through Clan societies and other organizations. Passenger and immigration lists show many early and influential immigrants bearing the name Alloway:

Alloway Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Alloway who settled in Pennsylvania in 1682
Alloway Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mary Alloway, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1770
Alloway Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Alloway, who arrived in New Orleans in 1823

New Zealand Alloway migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Alloway Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Alloway, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Chile" in 1866
  • Elizabeth Alloway, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Chile" in 1866

Contemporary Notables of the name Alloway (post 1700) +

  • Henry "Harry" Alloway (1856-1939), American journalist, publisher, and the financial editor of The New York Times from 1896 to 1906
  • Richard "Rich" Alloway II, American Republican politician, Member of the Pennsylvania State Senate (2009-) [3]
  • John L Alloway (b. 1952), American professional baseball player
  • Ben Alloway (b. 1981), Australian mixed martial artist
  • Lawrence Alloway (1926-1990), English art critic and curator who was the first to use the term "Pop Art" in the 1960s to indicate that art has a basis in the popular culture of its day
  • Billie Alloway (b. 1962), English professional footballer

The Alloway Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Dei dono sum quod sum
Motto Translation: By the bounty of God I am what I am.

  1. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  3. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2011, November 14) . Retrieved from on Facebook