The saga of the MacGillivrey family name begins among the people of an ancient Scottish tribe called the Picts
. The MacGillivrey name is derived from a personal name
meaning servant of judgement.
The Gaelic form of the name is Mac Gillebhrath.
Early Origins of the MacGillivrey family
The surname MacGillivrey was first found in Argyllshire
(Gaelic erra Ghaidheal), the region of western Scotland
corresponding roughly with the ancient Kingdom of Dál Riata, in the Strathclyde region of Scotland
, now part of the Council Area of Argyll and Bute
, but this family seat
was later moved to Iona
with the advent of St. Columba. From this original descendancy came Giolla Brighid, known also as Gillibride, or Gillivray. Gillivray's son, Somerled, the 8th and greatest Thane of Argyll, Lord of Kintyre
, and founder of the 'Kingdom of the Isles' was instrumental in driving out the invading Norse (Vikings) from his Kingdom, commencing in 1140 AD. However, Somerled, still gave allegiance to the King of Vikings
which continued until 1222, long after Somerled's death in 1164 AD. At this time, Alexander II of Scotland
routed many of the Clans 'of the Isles', leaving them eastern Scotland
in an area from Glasgow north to Inverness to the East Coast. The MacGillivrays were moved northwards to Lochabe. They became closely associated with their neighbors, the McInnises, the McMasters, and the MacEacherns. They also joined the great Pictish confederacy of Clans known as the Clan
Chattan, an association of some twenty six Clans, during the time of Ferquhard, 5th Chief of the MacKintosh, and Chief of the Clan
Early History of the MacGillivrey family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacGillivrey research.Another 653 words (47 lines of text) covering the years 1467, 1535, 1542, 1550, 1688, 15 a, 1745 and 1822 are included under the topic Early MacGillivrey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacGillivrey Spelling Variations
Repeated and inaccurate translation of Scottish names from Gaelic to English and back resulted in a wide variety of spelling variations
with single names. MacGillivrey has appeared MacGillivray, MacGillivery, MacGillivary, MacGillivry, MacIlvray, MacIlvrae, MacIlwrach, MacIlwray, MacGivery, MacGivray, McGillivrae and many more.
Early Notables of the MacGillivrey family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the Clan
at this time was MacGillivray of Dunmaglass. The Hon. William McGillivray, son of Donald McGillivray of Dalscoilte, near Dunmaglass, was the head of the NorthWest Company fur trading... Another 31 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacGillivrey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacGillivrey family to the New World and Oceana
Many Scottish families suffered enormous hardships and were compelled to leave their country of birth. They traveled to Ireland
, but mostly to the colonies of North America, where many found the freedom and opportunity they sought. It was not without a fight, though, as many were forced to stand up and defend their freedom in the American War of Independence
. The ancestors of these Scots abroad have rediscovered their heritage in the last century through the Clan
societies and other organizations that have sprung up across North America. Immigration and passenger ship lists show some important early immigrants bearing the name MacGillivrey: Alexander, Donald, Fargus, James, John, Loughlin, Owen, and William MacGillivray, who all arrived in South Carolina in 1716; Donald McGillivray, who settled in Ontario in 1794.