McLaws History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The old Scottish-Dalriadan name McLaws is derived from the Gaelic word Mac-Giolla-Uidhir, which literally means son of the pale youth or son of Odhar's servant. [1]

Early Origins of the McLaws family

The surname McLaws was first found in Ayrshire and Galloway, where John McLur and Robert McLure were first listed as followers of the Earl of Casilis in 1526. A few years later in 1532, Tomas Maklure was sergeant of Assize in Carrick. Interestingly, the earliest evidence of a Clan piper was Robert MacLure who was piper to the chief of the Buchanans in 1600. [1]

Early History of the McLaws family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McLaws research. Another 70 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1660, 1807, 1873 and 1857 are included under the topic Early McLaws History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McLaws Spelling Variations

Translation in medieval times was an undeveloped science and was often carried out without due care. For this reason, many early Scottish names appeared radically altered when written in English. The spelling variations of McLaws include MacClure, MacLure, MacCloor, McLeur, McCloor and others.

Early Notables of the McLaws family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the McLaws family to Ireland

Some of the McLaws family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 139 words (10 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 McLaws family

These settlers arrived in North America at a time when the east was burgeoning with prosperous colonies and the expanses of the west were just being opened up. The American War of Independence was also imminent. Some Scots stayed to fight for a new country, while others who remained loyal went north as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of them went on to rediscover their heritage in the 20th century through highland games and other patriotic Scottish events. The McLaws were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Agnes, Alexander, Andrew, George, James, Jane, John, Richard, Robert, Samuel and William MacClure, who all arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1840 and 1860.


Contemporary Notables of the name McLaws (post 1700) +

  • Virginia Randall McLaws (1872-1967), American painter and educator from Augusta, Georgia
  • Lafayette McLaws (1821-1897), United States Army officer and a Confederate general in the American Civil War, eponym of McLaws Circle, a Busch Business Park in James City County, Virginia
  • Shawn McLaws (b. 1993), American professional soccer defender for the New York Red Bulls in Major League Soccer


The McLaws 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: Spectemur agendo
Motto Translation: Let us be judged by our actions.


  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)


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