Show ContentsMcClinton History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The McClinton family comes from the ancient Scottish Dalriadan clans of the mountainous west coast of Scotland. The name McClinton is derived from the Gaelic name Mac Gille Ghionndaig, commonly MacGilliondaig, which means son of the servant of St. Finndag or son of the fair young man. [1] S. Findan was founder of the monastery of Clonard in Belfast Ireland. "Fintan, Fintoc (whence later Fionndoc), are diminutives of Finn, later Florin." [1]

Early Origins of the McClinton family

The surname McClinton 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.

One of the first records of the family used an ancient spelling, M'Gillindak who is author of a poem in the Dean of Lismore's Book. "The Maclintocks belong to Luss and thereabouts and in the district of Lorn around Lochaweside from 1500. Duncan Mc gellentak, witness in Balquhidder, 1549. " [1]

"MacClinton is a variant of Maclintock, q v., from the form Fintan. William McClintoun was messenger in Kyle in 1569 (RMS.). Finlay Macklintoun appears in the parish of Torphichen in 1676 (Torphichen)." [1]

Early History of the McClinton family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McClinton research. Another 191 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1693, 1684, 1692, 1394, 1757, 1611, 1797 and are included under the topic Early McClinton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McClinton Spelling Variations

Translation in medieval times was an undeveloped science and was often carried out without due care. For this reason, many early Scottish names appeared radically altered when written in English. The spelling variations of McClinton include MacClintock, MacLintock, MacLinden, MacAlinden and many more.

Early Notables of the McClinton family (pre 1700)

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

McClinton Ranking

In the United States, the name McClinton is the 4,663rd most popular surname with an estimated 7,461 people with that name. [2]

Ireland Migration of the McClinton family to Ireland

Some of the McClinton family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 91 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States McClinton migration to the United States +

The hardy Scots who made the crossing settled all along the east coast of North America and in the great west that was just then opening up. At the time of the American War of Independence, many United Empire Loyalists moved north from the American colonies to Canada. Scottish national heritage became better known in North America in the 20th century through highland games and other patriotic events. An examination of immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name McClinton arrived in North America very early:

McClinton Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Robert McClinton, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1840 [3]
  • S McClinton, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]

New Zealand McClinton migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

McClinton Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • R. Mcclinton, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Zealandia" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 8th December 1863 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name McClinton (post 1700) +

  • Obie Burnett "O.B." McClinton (1940-1987), American country music singer and songwriter
  • Marion McClinton (1954-2019), American Tony award nominated, Obie Award winning theatre director, playwright, and actor
  • Racie A. McClinton Jr., U.S. Navy, flight engineer who served in nine Operation Deepfreeze deployments through 1977, eponym of the McClinton Glacier, Antarctica
  • James A. McClinton (b. 1961), American politician, Mayor of Topeka, Kansas (2004-2005)
  • Jack Paul McClinton (b. 1985), American professional NBA basketball player from Baltimore, Maryland
  • Curtis McClinton (b. 1939), American retired collegiate and professional American AFL football player
  • Delbert McClinton (b. 1940), American blues rock and electric blues singer-songwriter, guitarist, harmonica player, and pianist, inducted into the Texas Heritage Songwriters Hall of Fame (2011)
  • Velma J. McClinton, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from California, 1996, 2000 [5]
  • Nelson F. McClinton, American politician, Mayor of Alma, Michigan, 1909-10 [5]
  • Kenneth "Kenny" McClinton (b. 1947), Northern Irish pastor and former political activist

The McClinton 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: Virtute et labore
Motto Translation: By valour and exertion.

  1. 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)
  2. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  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)
  4. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from
  5. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, February 3) . Retrieved from on Facebook