Show ContentsMacCurdy History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name MacCurdy comes from the ancient Scottish kingdom of Dalriada, where it was used to indicate someone who worked as a noted mariner or a sea captain. [1]

Early Origins of the MacCurdy family

The surname MacCurdy was first found in the islands of Arran and Bute. Early records for the family are scarce. "In 1506 Gilcrist Makwrerdy held the lands of Bransar in Bute, and Finlay Makvreirdy had sasine of Brothok there in the same year. Donald Makwrarty of Birgadulknok appears in 1534; several M'Urartys appear as witnesses in Bute in 1540; and Sir James M'Wartye, a Pope's knight, appears as vicar of Kingarth in Bute, 1554 and 1556. James Makilveritie, chaplain in the chapel of S. Michael the Archangel in Rothesay Castle, between 1590-1600, appears in the Exchequer Rolls as McQuhirertie, McQuhirirtie, McQuheritie (these three spellings in 1596), McIliquharartie (1598), and Makquhirrirtie (1600). " [2]

The MacMurtrie variant is "current in Ayrshire and Lanarkshire, Gilbert Makmurtye was a witness in Edinburgh, 1508." [2]

Early History of the MacCurdy family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacCurdy research. Another 290 words (21 lines of text) covering the years 1506, 1517, 1520, 1539, 1541, 1547, 1555, 1561, 1562, 1564, 1566, 1568, 1600, 1622, 1623, 1626, 1642, 1659, 1662, 1663, 1706, 1745, 1790, 1797, 1847, 1849, 1856, 1880, 1886, 1887, 1890, 1891, 1899, 1907, 1908, 1911, 1920, 1923, 1929, 1947, 1952, 1959, 1960 and 1961 are included under the topic Early MacCurdy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacCurdy Spelling Variations

Since medieval scribes still spelled according to sound, records from that era contain an enormous number of spelling variations. In various documents MacCurdy has been spelled MacCurdy, MacKirdy, MacKirdie, MacCurdie, MacQuartie, MacBararthy, MacBerarthy, MacWerarthy, MacMurtrie, MacMutrie and many more.

Early Notables of the MacCurdy family

Another 47 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacCurdy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the MacCurdy family to Ireland

Some of the MacCurdy family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 147 words (10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States MacCurdy migration to the United States +

Descendents of Dalriadan-Scottish families still populate many communities across North America. They are particularly common in Canada, since many went north as United Empire Loyalists at the time of the American War of Independence. Much later, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the highland games and Clan societies that now dot North America sprang up, allowing many Scots to recover their lost national heritage. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name MacCurdy, or a variant listed above:

MacCurdy Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Morgan MacCurdy, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1811 [3]
  • Neil MacCurdy, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815 [3]
  • William MacCurdy, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815 [3]
  • James MacCurdy, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815 [3]
  • Jane MacCurdy, who arrived in New York, NY in 1815 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name MacCurdy (post 1700) +

  • William K. MacCurdy, American engineer at SRI International who developed the Hydra-Cushion freight car for Southern Pacific in 1954
  • John Thompson MacCurdy (1886-1947), Canadian psychiatrist, co-founder and first secretary of the American Psychoanalytic Association, professor at Cornell University from 1913 to 1922, and lecturer in psychopathology at Cambridge University in 1923
  • Jean MacCurdy, American television executive and animator, President of Warner Bros. Animation from 1989 to 2001, recipient of the Women in Film Lucy Award (1997)
  • George Grant MacCurdy (1863-1947), American anthropologist, born in Warrensburg, Montana, Professor of prehistoric archaeology at Yale University, known for his book Human Origins (1924)
  • Samuel MacCurdy Greer (1810-1880), Irish politician who championed Presbyterian representation and tenant rights in Ulster, founding member of the Ulster tenant Right Association and of the all-Ireland Tenant Right League

The MacCurdy 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: Dieu et mon pays
Motto Translation: God and my country.

  1. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. 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) on Facebook