McDuffee History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the first families to use the name McDuffee lived in ancient Scotland in the kingdom of Dalriada. The name was then used as a nickname for a dark-featured, peaceful person. The Gaelic name of the Clan is Mac Dubhshithe, which translates as black one of peace. One branch of the Clan on the island of North Uist was known as Dubh-sidh, meaning 'black fairy,' due to their whimsical association with the faerie folk.

Early Origins of the McDuffee family

The surname McDuffee was first found in on the Isle of Colonsay, where the eponymous ancestor of the Clan may be Dubhshith, also called Dubside, who was lector at the Cathedral on the sacred isle of Iona in 1164. As the name MacFee is one of the oldest of all Dalriadan surnames it appears in records as early as the reign of Alexander II, when Johannes Macdufthi was witness to a charter in Dumfriesshire. In 1296, Thomas Macdoffy swore an oath of allegiance to the king.

Early History of the McDuffee family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McDuffee research. Another 226 words (16 lines of text) covering the year 1838 is included under the topic Early McDuffee History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McDuffee Spelling Variations

In various documents McDuffee has been spelled Since medieval scribes still spelled according to sound, records from that era contain an enormous number of spelling variations. MacFie, McFey, MacFee, MacDuffie, MacPhee, MacGuffie, MacCuffie, MacPhie, Maffie, Maffey, MacDubh-shithe (Gaelic) and many more.

Early Notables of the McDuffee family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the McDuffee family to Ireland

Some of the McDuffee family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 89 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 McDuffee migration to the United States +

Many who arrived from Scotland settled along the east coast of North America in communities that would go on to become the backbones of the young nations of the United States and Canada. In the American War of Independence, many settlers who remained loyal to England went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. Their descendants later began to recover the lost Scottish heritage through events such as the highland games that dot North America in the summer months. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the McDuffee family emigrate to North America:

McDuffee Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Daniel McDuffee, who landed in New England in 1720 [1]
  • John McDuffee, who arrived in New England in 1729 [1]
McDuffee Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Angus McDuffee, aged 30, who arrived in North Carolina in 1812 [1]

Contemporary Notables of the name McDuffee (post 1700) +

  • John McDuffee, American politician, Member of New Hampshire State Senate, 1786-87, 1789-90, 1795-97, 1801-03 (Strafford County 1786-87, 1789-90, 5th District 1795-97, 1801-03)
  • George W. McDuffee, American politician, Mayor of Keene, New Hampshire, 1895-96
  • George H. McDuffee, American politician, Member of New Hampshire State House of Representatives, 1893
  • Celesta B. McDuffee, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Michigan, 1952 ; Candidate in primary for Delegate to Michigan State Constitutional Convention from Wayne County 9th District, 1961
  • C. Bonom McDuffee, American Republican politician, Candidate for Michigan State House of Representatives from Wayne County 9th District, 1960

The McDuffee 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: Pro Rege
Motto Translation: For the King.

  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