MacMurchy History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The sea-swept Hebrides islands and the west coast of Scotland are the ancestral home of the MacMurchy family. Their name comes from the personal name Murdo. The Gaelic form of the surname was Mac Mhurchaidh, meaning son of Murdo. The name Murdo is equivalent to Murdock, and means sea warrior.

Early Origins of the MacMurchy family

The surname MacMurchy was first found in south Uist, in the Outer Hebrides (Gaelic: Na h-Eileanan Siar), in the present day Council Area of Western Isles, a region controlled by the Norwegians prior to the Treaty of Perth in 1266, where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

Early History of the MacMurchy family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacMurchy research. Another 102 words (7 lines of text) covering the year 1506 is included under the topic Early MacMurchy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacMurchy Spelling Variations

Medieval translation of Gaelic names could not be referred to as an accurate process. Spelling was not yet standardized, and names in documents from that era are riddled with spelling variations. MacMurchy has been written as MacMurchie, MacMurchy, MacUrchie, MacWurchie, MacWorthy, MacVurchie, Murchie and many more.

Early Notables of the MacMurchy family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early MacMurchy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States MacMurchy migration to the United States +

Many of the ancestors of Dalriadan families who arrived in North America still live in communities along the east coast of Canada and the United States. In the American War of Independence many of the original settlers traveled north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries the ancestors of many Scots began recovering their collective national heritage through Clan societies, highland games, and other patriotic events. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name MacMurchy or a variant listed above:

MacMurchy Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Mrs. Mac Murchy, aged 38, arrived in New York in 1895 aboard the ship "Saint Paul" from Southampton, England [1]
MacMurchy Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Lucy MacMurchy, aged 40, originally from London, arrived in New York in 1906 aboard the ship "Majestic (1890)" from Liverpool, England [2]
  • Isabelle MacMurchy, aged 62, arrived in New York in 1923 aboard the ship "Araguaya" from Bermuda [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name MacMurchy (post 1700) +

  • Ryan MacMurchy (b. 1983), Canadian professional ice hockey right winger
  • Gordon Samuel MacMurchy (1926-2005), Canadian politician in Saskatchewan, MLA for Last Mountain (1971-1975), MLA for Last Mountain-Touchwood (1975-1982)
  • Helen MacMurchy (1862-1953), Canadian doctor, first female intern at Toronto General Hospital


The MacMurchy 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: Per mare per terras
Motto Translation: By sea and by land.




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