Show ContentsMacWilliam History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the MacWilliam family come from the ancient Scottish kingdom of Dalriada. Their surname comes from the personal name William. The Gaelic form of the surname is Mac Uilleim, which means son of William.

Early Origins of the MacWilliam family

The surname MacWilliam was first found in on the Isle of Harris, 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 Scotland.

Early History of the MacWilliam family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacWilliam research. Another 121 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1187, 1215, and 1613 are included under the topic Early MacWilliam History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacWilliam Spelling Variations

Medieval spelling was at best an intuitive process, and translation between Gaelic and English was no more effective. These factors caused an enormous number of spelling variations in Dalriadan names. In fact, it was not uncommon to see a father and son who spelled their name differently. Over the years, MacWilliam has been spelled MacWilliam, MacQuilliam, MacKilliam, MacWilliams, MacKullie, MacCullie, MacWillie and many more.

Early Notables of the MacWilliam family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the MacWilliam family to Ireland

Some of the MacWilliam family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 69 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States MacWilliam migration to the United States +

Settlers from Scotland put down roots in communities all along the east coast of North America. Some moved north from the American colonies to Canada as United Empire Loyalists during the American War of Independence. As Clan societies and highland games started in North America in the 20th century many Scots rediscovered parts of their heritage. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name MacWilliam were among those contributors:

MacWilliam Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Fenla MacWilliam, who landed in Virginia in 1649 [1]
  • Gellust Macwilliam, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1651 [1]

  1. 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