McLachlin History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The western coast of Scotland and the desolate Hebrides islands are the ancient home of the McLachlin family. Their name is derived from the personal name Lachlann. The Gaelic form of the name is Mac Lachlainn, denoting the son of Lachlann. Although most feel Lachlan Mor, a great Chief who lived by Loch Fyne in the thirteenth century, is the Clan founder, the legend of descent from the ancient Gaelic King, Niall of the Nine Hostages, who reigned in 400 AD, offers some clues as to the clan's early origins.
Lochlann, in old Gaelic means literally, 'Norway,' and was the favorite Christian name of the royal house of O'Neill in Northern Ireland, a house descended from Niall of the Nine hostages, and said to be the family with the oldest history in Europe. A branch of the O'Neill's took the surname MacLochlain and soon became rival Kings to the O'Neills.
King Brian O'Neill slew the last King Domnall MacLochlainn. His son Anrothan, who was ancestor of the MacLachlans in Scotland, married the daughter of the King of Scots, thereby gaining the inheritance of Cowall and Knapdale in Scotland. Anrothan MacLachlan was progenitor of the MacLachlans of Strathlachlan, the Lamonts, the Lyons, the MacSorleys, the MacEwans, and the MacMillans. It was in the mid-twelfth century that each of these branches separated into distinct entities.
Early Origins of the McLachlin family
The surname McLachlin 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, where this Clan first settled in Scotland in 1100 when Lachlan was heir of Fergus, Lord of Galloway. In 1238, a charter recorded Lachlan Mor's father increasing the endowment to Paisley Abbey.
When, in 1292, King John Baliol erected Argyll into a sheriffdom, Gillescop MacLachlan was one of the twelve principal barons whose land it encompassed. In 1296, Ewen MacLachlan was forced to swear loyalty to the English King Edward I, but this loyalty was formally changed back to Scotland in 1305, when Gillescop MacLachlan, like his neighbors the Campbells, swore allegiance to Robert the Bruce. Gillescop was a member of the Barons of Bruce's first parliament at St. Andrews, in 1308. 
King John of England (reigned: 1199-1216) was also known as John Lackland from the Norman French, "Johan sanz Terre" or "John without land."
Early History of the McLachlin family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McLachlin research. Another 104 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1292, 1600 and are included under the topic Early McLachlin History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
McLachlin Spelling Variations
Spelling variations were extremely common in medieval names, since scribes from that era recorded names according to sound rather than a standard set of rules. McLachlin has appeared in various documents spelled MacLachlan, Lachlan, MacLachlane, McGlothan, McGlothin, MacLauchlan, MacLauchlane, MacLauchlin, MacLaughlin, Lauchlan and many more.
Early Notables of the McLachlin family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early McLachlin Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the McLachlin family to Ireland
Some of the McLachlin family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 66 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
McLachlin migration to the United States +
The descendants of the Dalriadan families who made the great crossing of the Atlantic still dot communities along the east coast of the United States and Canada. In the American War of Independence, many of the settlers traveled north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. Clan societies and highland games have allowed Canadian and American families of Scottish descent to recover much of their lost heritage. Investigation of the origins of family names on the North American continent has revealed that early immigrants bearing the name McLachlin or a variant listed above include:
McLachlin Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Florence McLachlin, who landed in America in 1739 
McLachlin Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Daniel McLachlin, aged 25, who arrived in New York in 1812 
Contemporary Notables of the name McLachlin (post 1700) +
- Parker Nicholas McLachlin (b. 1979), American professional PGA golfer
- Beverley McLachlin PC (b. 1943), born Beverley Gietz, Canadian justice, 17th Chief Justice of Canada and the first woman to hold this position, Deputy of the Governor General of Canada, the longest-serving Supreme Court chief justice
- Daniel McLachlin (1810-1872), Canadian businessman and politician in Canada West who represented Renfrew South in the 1st Canadian Parliament from 1867 to 1869
Related Stories +
The McLachlin 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: Fortis et fidus
Motto Translation: Brave and trusty.
- ^ 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)
- ^ 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)