McRobert History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The age-old Hebrides islands and the west coast of Scotland are the ancestral home of the McRobert family. Their name comes from the personal name Robert. Known as the Clan Donnachaidh, the family's origins are very distinguished, as the senior branch of the line were the hereditary abbots of Dunkeld, who traced their descent from Iona. In addition, Abbot Duncan of Dunkeld, the Robertson progenitor, was killed in battle in 964, as he led the warriors, bearing, a reliquary of St. Columba. His grandson, Abbot Crinan of Dunkeld, married the Kings daughter and then fathered King Duncan I of Scotland who was killed by MacBeth (of Shakespearean fame). Crinan is buried at the Isle of lona, burial place of Scotland's early Kings.

Early Origins of the McRobert family

The surname McRobert was first found in Atholl. King Duncan's younger son, Maelmore, sired Madadh, Earl of Atholl, and his grandson, Earl Henry, was father to Conan who held vast territories in this area. Conan of Glenerochie was the first Chief of the Robertsons and gave his name to the Clan Connchaidh or Duncan. His successor, Duncan, the 5th Chief, led the Clan in the army of King Bruce at Bannockburn in 1314 against the English. For this service, and his subsequent staunch support of the Scottish Crown, his grandson Robert of Struan was granted the lands and barony in 1451.

Early History of the McRobert family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McRobert research. Another 403 words (29 lines of text) covering the years 1745, 1587, 1703, 1715, 1723, 1727, 1745, 1749, 1784, 1746, 1668 and 1689 are included under the topic Early McRobert History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McRobert Spelling Variations

Medieval spelling was at best an intuitive process, and translation between Gaelic and English was no more effective. These factors caused an enormous number of spelling variations in Dalriadan names. In fact, it was not uncommon to see a father and son who spelled their name differently. Over the years, McRobert has been spelled Robertson, MacConachie, Maconachie, MacConaghy, MacConchie, MacConckey, MacConkey, MacDonnachie, MacDonachie, MacDunnachie, MacInroy, MacLagan, Mac Raibeirt (Gaelic) and many more.

Early Notables of the McRobert family (pre 1700)

Another 38 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early McRobert Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the McRobert family to Ireland

Some of the McRobert family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 64 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 McRobert migration to the United States +

Scottish settlers arrived in many of the communities that became the backbones of the United States and Canada. Many stayed, but some headed west for the endless open country of the prairies. In the American War of Independence, many Scots who remained loyal to England re-settled in Canada as United Empire Loyalists. Scots across North America were able to recover much of their lost heritage in the 20th century as Clan societies and highland games sprang up across North America. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first McRoberts to arrive on North American shores:

McRobert Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Archibald McRobert, who arrived in Virginia in 1761 [1]
  • Peter McRobert, aged 38, who arrived in New York in 1774 [1]
  • John McRobert, who landed in America in 1775 [1]

Canada McRobert migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

McRobert Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. John McRobert U.E. who settled in Saint Johns, New Brunswick c. 1784 [2]

New Zealand McRobert 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:

McRobert Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Miss Isabella Mcrobert, (b. 1842), aged 22, British domestic servant travelling aboard the ship "Amoor" arriving in Lyttleton, South Island, New Zealand on 1st July 1864 [3]
  • Miss Margaret Mcrobert, (b. 1848), aged 18, British domestic servant travelling from London aboard the ship "John Temperley" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st June 1866 [3]
  • James McRobert, aged 24, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Queen of Nations" in 1874
  • Robert McRobert, aged 17, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Queen of Nations" in 1874
  • John McRobert, aged 15, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Queen of Nations" in 1874

Contemporary Notables of the name McRobert (post 1700) +

  • Mr. John McRobert O.B.E., British Principal Engineer for Department of Infrastructure, was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to Engineering in Northern Ireland [4]
  • Stuart McRobert (b. 1958), English writer on strength training, founder and publisher of Hardgainer magazine


The McRobert 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: Virtutis gloria merces
Motto Translation: Glory is the reward of valour.


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ 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
  3. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  4. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018, www.thegazette.co.uk/honours-lists


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