Gilchrist History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Picts were the ancient Scottish tribe where the ancestors of the Gilchrist family lived. The name Gilchrist comes from the Gaelic name Gille Criosd, which became Gillacrist in Middle Gaelic. The name literally means "servant of Christ." [1]

Early Origins of the Gilchrist family

The surname Gilchrist was first found in Berwickshire where the first records of the family were as a forename. "Gillecrist mac Finguni and Gillecrist mac Cormaic are witnesses to Gaelic grants in the Book of Deer before 1132. Gillecrist mac Gillewinin witnessed the charter by Uchtredus filius Fergusi of the church of Colmanele to the Abbey of Holyrood c. 1165, and mention is made of the lands of Gilcriste Kide near the river Nethan c. 1180-1203." [2]

Early History of the Gilchrist family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gilchrist research. Another 328 words (23 lines of text) covering the years 1057, 1200, 1179, 1204, 1200, 1190, 1219, 1231, 1282, 1296, 1302, 1343, 1304, 1707, 1774, 1707, 1732, 1774 and are included under the topic Early Gilchrist History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gilchrist Spelling Variations

Before the first dictionaries appeared in the last few hundred years, scribes spelled according to sound. spelling variations are common among Scottish names. Gilchrist has been spelled Gilchrist, Gilchristson, Ghilchriston, Gillchrist, Gillcrest, Gilcrist and many more.

Early Notables of the Gilchrist family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was Ebenezer Gilchrist (1707-1774), Scottish physician, born at Dumfries in 1707, studied medicine at Edinburgh, London, and Paris, and graduated...
Another 27 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gilchrist Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Gilchrist family to Ireland

Some of the Gilchrist family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 58 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Gilchrist migration to the United States +

In those unstable times, many had no choice but to leave their beloved homelands. Sickness and poverty hounded travelers to North America, but those who made it were welcomed with land and opportunity. These settlers gave the young nations of Canada and the United States a strong backbone as they stood up for their beliefs as United Empire Loyalists and in the American War of Independence. In this century, the ancestors of these brave Scots have begun to recover their illustrious heritage through Clan societies and other heritage organizations. Early passenger and immigration lists reveal many Scottish settlers bearing the name Gilchrist:

Gilchrist Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Robert Gilchrist, who settled in New Jersey in 1685
Gilchrist Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Robert Gilchrist, who arrived in New England in 1725 [3]
  • Duncan Gilchrist, who landed in New York in 1738 [3]
  • Margaret Gilchrist, who arrived in New York in 1740 [3]
  • Nimrod Gilchrist, who landed in South Carolina in 1751 [3]
  • Henry and John and his wife Marion, Lawrence Gilchrist, who, who settled in Boston in 1766
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Gilchrist Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Gilchrist, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1823 [3]
  • Andrew Gilchrist, who landed in New York in 1843 [3]
  • John R Gilchrist, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • L Gilchrist, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • T Gilchrist, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Gilchrist migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Gilchrist Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • John Gilchrist, who landed in Quebec in 1784
  • Mr. Benjamin Gilchrist U.E. who settled in Home District [York County], Ontario c. 1784 [4]
  • Mr. Peter Gilchrist U.E. who settled in Ernest Town [Ernestown], Ontario c. 1784 [4]
Gilchrist Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Jason Gilchrist, who arrived in Canada in 1830
  • Thomas Gilchrist, aged 20, a clerk, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Lady Campbell" in 1834
  • Alexander Gilchrist, who arrived in Canada in 1839
  • John Gilchrist, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1843

Australia Gilchrist migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Gilchrist Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Gilchrist, aged 33, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1857 aboard the ship "Monsoon"
  • Ann Gilchrist, aged 23, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1859 aboard the ship "David McIvor"

New Zealand Gilchrist 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:

Gilchrist Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. George Gilchrist, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Harwood" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 4th November 1858 [5]
  • Mrs. Janet Gilchrist, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Harwood" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 4th November 1858 [5]
  • Miss Isabella Gilchrist, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Harwood" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 4th November 1858 [5]
  • Mr. Dugald Gilchrist, Scottish settler travelling from Leith aboard the ship "Strathallan" arriving in Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 8th January 1858, going to Wellington [6]
  • Miss Euphemia Gilchrist, Scottish settler travelling from Leith aboard the ship "Strathallan" arriving in Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 8th January 1858, going to Wellington [6]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Gilchrist (post 1700) +

  • William Wallace Gilchrist (1846-1916), American composer
  • John Gilchrist (1792-1859), American-born, Canadian physician and politician in Upper Canada
  • Carlton Chester "Cookie" Gilchrist (1935-2011), American AFL and CFL football player
  • Ellen Gilchrist (b. 1935), American novelist and short story writer
  • John Borthwick Gilchrist FRSE (1759-1841), Scottish surgeon and Indologist; he endowed the Gilchrist Educational Trust
  • John Skidmore Gilchrist (1939-1991), Scottish footballer
  • Keir David Peters Gilchrist (b. 1992), English-born, Canadian actor from Camden Town, London, best known for playing Marshall Gregson on Showtime's original series United States of Tara
  • Roy Gilchrist (1934-2001), West Indian cricketer
  • Robert Murray Gilchrist (1867-1917), English novelist and author
  • Percy Carlyle Gilchrist FRS (1851-1935), British chemist and metallurgist from Dorset
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Cornwall
  • Richard Ian Gilchrist, British Midshipman aboard the HMS Cornwall when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he survived the sinking [7]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Alexander Gilchrist, British Able Bodied Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking [8]


Suggested Readings for the name Gilchrist +

  • 0 Alexander Gilchrist, 1721-1778, and His Descendants: Islay, Argyleshire, Scotland to Argyle, Washington County, New York, U.S.A. by Frederick A. Gilchrist.

  1. ^ Sims, Clifford Stanley The Origin and Signification of Scottish Surnames. 1862. Print.
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  4. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  5. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  6. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  7. ^ Force Z Survivors Crew List HMS Cornwall (Retrieved 2018, February 13th) - Retrieved from https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listcornwallcrew.html#A
  8. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html


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