When McGrey was first used as a surname among the ancient Scottish people, it was a name for a prosperous person. The Gaelic form of the surname McGrey is Mac Rath,
which literally means son of grace
or son of prosperity.
Early Origins of the McGrey family
The surname McGrey was first found in Inverness-shire
(Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Nis) divided between the present day Scottish Council Areas of Highland and Western Isles, and consisting of a large northern mainland area and various island areas off the west coast, the shire was anciently both a Pictish and Norwegian stronghold, but their ancient history is often clouded with conjecture. It appears certain that they lived before the 14th century at Clunes, to the west of Inverness in the territories of the Fraser Clan
. Consequently the family has always been friendly towards that Clan. From about 1400, they moved to the location with which they are readily associated, Kintail.
Early History of the McGrey family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McGrey research.Another 1095 words (78 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1539, 1539, 1688, 1745, 1425, 1505, 1477, 1505, 1715, 1764 and 1778 are included under the topic Early McGrey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
McGrey Spelling Variations
The arts of spelling and translation were yet in their infancies when surnames began, so there are an enormous number of spelling variations
of the names in early Scottish records. This is a particular problem with Scottish names because of the numerous times a name might have been loosely translated to English from Gaelic and back. McGrey has been spelled MacCrae, MacCraith, MacCrath, MacCraw, MacCray, MacCrea, MacCree, MacCreight, MacCrie, MacReagh, MacRae, MacRay, MacRie and many more.
Early Notables of the McGrey family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the Clan
at this time was Finghin MacCarthy Reagh (c.1425-1505), the 8th Prince of Carbery from 1477 to 1505, belonged to the MacCarthy Reagh dynasty; the Earl of Seaforth who forfeited his lands in 1715, but in 1764 was allowed to buy the lands back from the Government. In... Another 134 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McGrey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the McGrey family to Ireland
Some of the McGrey family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 105 words (8 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 McGrey family to the New World and Oceana
This oppression forced many Scots to leave their homelands. Most of these chose North America as their destination. Although the journey left many sick and poor, these immigrants were welcomed the hardy with great opportunity. Many of these settlers stood up for their newfound freedom in the American War of Independence
. More recently, Scots abroad have recovered much of their collective heritage through highland games and other patriotic functions and groups. An examination of passenger and immigration lists has located various settlers bearing the name McGrey:
McGrey Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- T McGrey, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
The McGrey 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 Translation: With fortitude.