An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
Origins Available: Irish, Scottish-Alt, Scottish
The age-old Pictish-Scottish family name Gillespie is derived from the Gaelic name Gilleasbuig, which means the bishop's servant. The Gaelic word easbuig is borrowed from the Latin word episcopus, which means bishop. Patronymic names often substituted the name of a saint or other revered religious figure in place of a devout bearer's actual father. The name Gillespie is regarded as the Gaelic cognate of the Anglo-Saxon personal name Archibald, for reasons that remain obscure.
The surname Gillespie was first found in Aberdeenshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Obar Dheathain), a historic county, and present day Council Area of Aberdeen, located in the Grampian region of northeastern Scotland. For the origin of the name, Sir Thomas Innes tells us that the name is derived from Sliochd Gillies a Chieftain of the MacPhersons in Invershie. He places this branch of the MacPhersons, as descendants of Elias MacPherson, brother of Kenneth MacPherson, ancestor of the MacPherson Clan. However, Gillies was recorded as living approximately 1250-1300, and this record is predated by researches by two other historians who place a Ewan filius Gillespie as witnessing a Charter by Alwoin, Earl of Lennox, granted in 1175. The connection between this earlier record and the MacPherson line is vague and uncertain but most historians agree that the Gillespie are of the Clan Chattan.
In the Middle ages, spelling and translation were not yet regulated by any general rules. spelling variations in names were common even among members of one family unit. Gillespie has appeared Gillespie, Gilaspy, Gilaspie, Gilespie, Gilespy, Gillaspey, Gillaspie, Gillaspy, Gillespay, Gillespee, Gillespery, Gillespey, Gillespie, Gillespy, Gillispey and many more.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gillespie research. Another 427 words (30 lines of text) covering the years 1175, 1228, 1229, 1617, 1675, 1613, 1648, 1648, 1776 and 1825 are included under the topic Early Gillespie History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 129 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gillespie Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Some of the Gillespie family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 109 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.
Faced by this persecution and the generally unstable political climate of those days, many Scots chose to leave their homeland for Ireland, Australia, and North America in search of greater opportunity and freedom. The colonies across the Atlantic were the most popular choice, but a passage there was neither cheap nor easily suffered. Passengers arrived sick and poor, but those who made it intact often found land and more tolerant societies in which to live. These brave settlers formed the backbone of the burgeoning nations of Canada and the United States. It is only this century that the ancestors of these families have begun to recover their collective identity through the patriotic highland games and Clan societies that have sprung up throughout North America. Research into early immigration and passenger lists revealed many immigrants bearing the name Gillespie:
Gillespie Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Gillespie Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Gillespie Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
Gillespie Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
Gillespie Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
A clan is a social group made up of a number of distinct branch-families that actually descended from, or accepted themselves as descendants of, a common ancestor. The word clan means simply children. The idea of the clan as a community is necessarily based around this idea of heredity and is most often ruled according to a patriarchal structure. For instance, the clan chief represented the hereditary "parent" of the entire clan. The most prominent example of this form of society is the Scottish Clan system...More
Septs of the Distinguished Name Gillespie
Clasby, Clashby, Clusby, Galespie, Galespy, Gallespie, Gallespy, Gelaspy, Gilaspey, Gilaspie, Gilaspy, Gilespay, Gilespee, Gilespery, Gilespey, Gilespie, Gilespy, Gilispey, Gilispie, Gillaspey, Gillaspie, Gillaspy, Gillespay, Gillespee, Gillespery, Gillespey, Gillespie, Gillespy, Gillispey, Gillispie, Gylaspie, Gylaspy, Gylespie, Gylespy, Kilespie, Killespie, Kylespie, Kyllespie and more.
The Gillespie Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Gillespie 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 4 May 2016 at 16:36.