McLauchlan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The many centuries old Dalriadan-Scottish name McLauchlan comes 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 McLauchlan family

The surname McLauchlan 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. [1]

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 McLauchlan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McLauchlan research. Another 104 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1292, 1600 and are included under the topic Early McLauchlan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McLauchlan Spelling Variations

Spelling and translation were not standardized practices until the last few centuries. Spelling variations are extremely common among early Scottish names. McLauchlan has been spelled MacLachlan, Lachlan, MacLachlane, McGlothan, McGlothin, MacLauchlan, MacLauchlane, MacLauchlin, MacLaughlin, Lauchlan and many more.

Early Notables of the McLauchlan family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the McLauchlan family to Ireland

Some of the McLauchlan 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.


United States McLauchlan 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 McLauchlan family emigrate to North America:

McLauchlan Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Archibald McLauchlan, who landed in New Jersey in 1685 [2]
  • Donald McLauchlan, who arrived in New Jersey in 1685 [2]
  • John McLauchlan, who landed in New Jersey in 1685 [2]
McLauchlan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Robert McLauchlan, who arrived in North Carolina in 1886 [2]

Canada McLauchlan migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

McLauchlan Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Donald McLauchlan U.E. who settled in Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1784 he was a Magistrate in Charlotte County, New Brunswick [3]
McLauchlan Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Ellen McLauchlan, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Thomas Hanford" from Cork, Ireland

Australia McLauchlan migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

McLauchlan Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William McLauchlan, English convict from Perth, who was transported aboard the "America" on April 4, 1829, settling in New South Wales, Australia [4]

New Zealand McLauchlan 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:

McLauchlan Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Miss Helen Mclauchlan, (b. 1845), aged 18, British domestic servant travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship " Lancashire Witch" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 13th October 1863 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name McLauchlan (post 1700) +

  • Gerry McLauchlan (b. 1989), Scottish football defender
  • John "Ian" McLauchlan (b. 1942), former Scottish Rugby union footballer
  • Gordon William McLauchlan ONZM (1931-2020), New Zealand writer and social historian, known as a popular media personality on both television and radio
  • Lucy Mclauchlan (b. 1978), English contemporary artist
  • Tracey McLauchlan (b. 1979), New Zealand table tennis player
  • Murray McLauchlan CM (b. 1948), Canadian singer, songwriter, guitarist, pianist, and harmonica player

HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. Frederick Mclauchlan, British Ordinary Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [6]


The McLauchlan 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.


  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. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  4. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 26) America voyage to New South Wales, Australia in 1829 with 176 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/america/1829
  5. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  6. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html


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