Hemphil History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The age-old Scottish surname Hemphil was first used by the Strathclyde-Briton people. The Hemphil family lived in Galston, in the county of Ayrshire. [1]

Early Origins of the Hemphil family

The surname Hemphil was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire, 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.

Early History of the Hemphil family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hemphil research. Another 97 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1689, 1704, 1741, 1716, 1718, 1630 and are included under the topic Early Hemphil History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Hemphil Spelling Variations

In Medieval times, spelling and translation were not nearly so highly developed as today. They were generally carried out according to the sound and intuition of the bearer. For that reason spelling variations are extremely common among early Scottish names. Hemphil has been spelled Hemphill, Hempill, Hempsill, Hempshall, Hemshall and many more.

Early Notables of the Hemphil family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family at this time was Samuel Hemphill (d. 1741), Irish Presbyterian minister, a native of Ulster, and probably trained for the ministry in one of the Presbyterian academies in the north of Ireland. He appears to have entered at...
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hemphil Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Hemphil family to Ireland

Some of the Hemphil family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 92 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Hemphil family

Unrest, poverty, and persecution caused thousands to look for opportunity and freedom in the North American colonies. The crossing was long, overcrowded, and unsanitary, though, and came only at great expense. Many Strathclyde families settled on the east coast of North America in communities that would form the backbone of what would become the great nations of the United States and Canada. The American War of Independence caused those who remained loyal to England to move north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. In the 20th century, Strathclyde and other Scottish families across North America began to recover their collective heritage through highland games and Clan societies. Among them: John Hemphill settled in New Jersey in 1792; Samuel Hemphill settled in Philadelphia in 1734; Alexander, Charles, Daniel, David, Henry, Hugh, James, Joseph, Robert, Samuel and William Hemphill all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860..



The Hemphil 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: Constanter ac non timide
Motto Translation: With constancy, not timidity.


  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)


Houseofnames.com on Facebook