McLelan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
A people of the Scottish/English Borderlands known as the Strathclyde Britons were the first to use the name McLelan. It is derived from the son of the servant of Fillan. Fillan is derived from the word fail which means wolf. In Gaelic, the name was spelled Mac Gill Fhaolain
Early Origins of the McLelan family
The surname McLelan was first found in the former counties of Kirkcudbrightshire and Galloway where Chief Duncan MacLellan appears in a charter of Alexander II in 1217. Other early records of the surname include Gilbert M'Lolane, who lived around the year 1270. Gilbert's son Patrick, along with several others, took the castle of Dumfries from the supporters of Robert the Bruce in around 1305. Gilelbertus MacLelan was elected Bishop of Man and the Sudreys in 1325 and held the position for almost 3 years.
Early History of the McLelan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McLelan research. Another 200 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1347, 1466, 1457, 1450, 1547, 1633, 1647, 1513, 1597, 1641 and are included under the topic Early McLelan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
McLelan Spelling Variations
In the era before dictionaries, there were no rules governing the spelling or translation of names or any other words. Consequently, there are an enormous number of spelling variations in Medieval Scottish names. McLelan has appeared as MacClelland, McClellan, MacLellan, McLellan, MacLelland, McLelland, MacClelland, McClelland, Clelland and many more.
Early Notables of the McLelan family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst bearers of this family name during their early history was Sir William Maclellan of Bombie, knighted by King James IV of Scotland, who fought for the king in the losing Battle of Flodden Field in 1513. According to folklore, McLellan threw his gauntlet at the king's feet, shook his fist and...
Migration of the McLelan family to Ireland
Some of the McLelan family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
The freedom, opportunity, and land of the North American colonies beckoned. There, Scots found a place where they were generally free from persecution and where they could go on to become important players in the birth of new nations. Some fought in the American War of Independence, while others went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of these Scottish settlers have been able to recover their lost national heritage in the last century through highland games and Clan societies in North America. Among them:
McLelan Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century