The people known in ancient Scotland
as the Picts
were the ancestors of the first to use MacCrae as a name. It was a name for a prosperous person. The Gaelic form of the surname MacCrae is Mac Rath,
which literally means son of grace
or son of prosperity.
Early Origins of the MacCrae family
The surname MacCrae was first found in Inverness-shire
(Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Nis) divided between the present day Scottish Council Areas of Highland and Western Isles, and consisting of a large northern mainland area and various island areas off the west coast, the shire was anciently both a Pictish and Norwegian stronghold, but their ancient history is often clouded with conjecture. It appears certain that they lived before the 14th century at Clunes, to the west of Inverness in the territories of the Fraser Clan
. Consequently the family has always been friendly towards that Clan. From about 1400, they moved to the location with which they are readily associated, Kintail.
Early History of the MacCrae family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacCrae research.Another 1095 words (78 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1539, 1539, 1688, 1745, 1425, 1505, 1477, 1505, 1715, 1764 and 1778 are included under the topic Early MacCrae History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacCrae Spelling Variations
In medieval Scotland
, names were more often spelled according to sound than any regular set of rules. An enormous number of spelling variations
were the result. Over the years, the name MacCrae has been spelled MacCrae, MacCraith, MacCrath, MacCraw, MacCray, MacCrea, MacCree, MacCreight, MacCrie, MacReagh, MacRae, MacRay, MacRie and many more.
Early Notables of the MacCrae family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the Clan
at this time was Finghin MacCarthy Reagh (c.1425-1505), the 8th Prince of Carbery from 1477 to 1505, belonged to the MacCarthy Reagh dynasty; the Earl of Seaforth who forfeited his lands in 1715, but in 1764 was allowed to buy the lands back from the Government. In... Another 134 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacCrae Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacCrae family to Ireland
Some of the MacCrae family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 105 words (8 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 MacCrae family to the New World and Oceana
In such difficult times, Ireland
, and North America looked like better homes for many Scots. The trips were expensive and grueling, but also rewarding, as the colonies were havens for those unwelcome in the old country. That legacy did not die easily, though, and many were forced to fight for their freedom in the American War of Independence
. The Scottish legacy has resurface in more recent times, though, through Clan
societies, highland games, and other organizations. Immigration and passenger lists have shown many early immigrants bearing the old Scottish name of MacCrae:
MacCrae Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Hugh MacCrae, who settled in New York in 1774
Contemporary Notables of the name MacCrae (post 1700)
- John MacCrae (1872-1918), Canadian physician and poet who wrote "In Flanders Fields"
- William MacCrae, Astronomer
The MacCrae 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 Translation: With fortitude.