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McElmurray History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the name McElmurray begins in the Scottish/English Borderlands with a family of Strathclyde-Briton ancestry. It is a name for a devotee of the Virgin Mary. Looking back further, we find the name McElmurray was originally derived from the Gaelic Gille Moire, which means follower of Mary.

Early Origins of the McElmurray family

The surname McElmurray was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times. Early records from Cumberland show that between 1133 and 1156, Gilmor, son of Gilander founded the chapelry of Treverman (later Trierman) in the parish of Walton, Cumberland, site of Triermain castle. Gilmore meaning "Gill the Big" was son of Gillanders the great Chief who lived about 1140.

Early History of the McElmurray family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McElmurray research.
Another 185 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1250, 1605, 1671, 1661 and 1671 are included under the topic Early McElmurray History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McElmurray Spelling Variations

Medieval Scottish names are rife with spelling variations. This is due to the fact that scribes in that era spelled according to the sound of words, rather than any set of rules. McElmurray has been spelled Gilmour, Gilmore, Gilmur, Gilmor, Gilmer and many more.

Early Notables of the McElmurray family (pre 1700)

Another 21 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McElmurray Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the McElmurray family to Ireland

Some of the McElmurray family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 101 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the McElmurray family to the New World and Oceana

Many Scots were left with few options other than to leave their homeland for the colonies across the Atlantic. Some of these families fought to defend their newfound freedom in the American War of Independence. Others went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of these families have recently been able to rediscover their roots through Clan societies and other Scottish organizations. Among them: James, John, Robert, Thomas, and William Gilmer settled in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860; Alexander, Andrew, Archibald, David, James, John, Patrick, Samuel and William Gilmore arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860.

Contemporary Notables of the name McElmurray (post 1700)

  • James H. McElmurray MD, American Assistant Professor at the University of Tennessee
  • Karen Salyer McElmurray (b. 1956), American writer of literary fiction, creative nonfiction, and memoir, recipient of the AWP Award for Creative Nonfiction (2003), and the Lillie Chaffin Award for Appalachian Writing (2001)

The McElmurray 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: Perseveranti dabitur
Motto Translation: It will be given to the persevering.

McElmurray Family Crest Products

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