Clan Chattan or ' Clan of the Cats' was a powerful confederation of Scottish clans united in the year 1609. Originally composed of the Mackintoshes, Davidsons, Macphersons, MacGillivrays and MacBeans, it was later strengthened by the addition of the Farquharsons and other smaller clans that joined for protection. All these clans share the same Clan Crest and Motto, but have an individual Coat of Arms. Gillechattan Mor is claimed to have been the clan's first chief.
Early Origins of the Chatten family
Roxburghshire came a family bearing this as a surname. But records also reveal that the Chattan Clan originated in Warwickshire where they were recorded at Bromwich with manor and estates in that shire. They were originally of Chatou in Normandy. They moved northward at 1150 at the invitation of David, Earl of Huntingdon, and were granted lands on the Kale Water in the parish of Hounan, Roxburghshire, which they named Chatto. One of the first notables on record was Alexander Chatto, Constable of Roxburgh. Sir Adam Chatto rendered homage to King Edward I of England during the latter's brief conquest of Scotland in 1296, as did William and Robert Chatto. A later Sir Adam Chatto of Kelso was Sub Prior in 1531, and Richard Chatto was Sub Prior of Melrose in 1534. The Chattos family intermarried with the two distinguished Northumbrian families of Percy and Potts, and became involved in border warfare.
Early History of the Chatten family
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Chatten Spelling Variations
Scotland in the Middle Ages often appear under many spelling variations. These are due to the practice of spelling according to sound in the era before dictionaries had standardized the English language. Chatten has appeared as Chatto, Chattoo, Chato, Chatoo, Katto, Cato, Schatto, Shatto, Chattow, Chattone and many more.
Early Notables of the Chatten family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Chatten family to the New World and Oceana
The North American colonies beckoned, with their ample land and opportunity as their freedom from the persecution suffered by so many Clan families back home. Many Scots even fought against England in the American War of Independence to gain this freedom. Recently, clan societies have allowed the ancestors of these brave Scottish settlers to rediscover their familial roots. Among them: Lewis Chatto who arrived in New York in 1820.
The Chatten 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: Omnibus amicus
Motto Translation: A friend to everyone.
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