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McSporran History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



McSporran is an ancient Dalriadan-Scottish nickname for a person who carried a sporran, which is the purse worn with the kilt in Highland Scottish dress. The Gaelic form of the surname is Mac-an-sporain, which means son of the purse.

Early Origins of the McSporran family


The surname McSporran was first found in on the Isle of Iona, where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Scotland to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

Early History of the McSporran family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McSporran research.
Another 227 words (16 lines of text) covering the year 1745 is included under the topic Early McSporran History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McSporran Spelling Variations


Medieval translation of Gaelic names could not be referred to as an accurate process. Spelling was not yet standardized, and names in documents from that era are riddled with spelling variations. McSporran has been written as MacSporran, MacSparran and others.

Early Notables of the McSporran family (pre 1700)


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

Migration of the McSporran family to the New World and Oceana


Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

McSporran Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Robert McSporran, aged 37, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Algoa Bay" in 1881
  • Mary McSporran, aged 28, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Algoa Bay" in 1881
  • Archibald McSporran, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Algoa Bay" in 1881
  • Hugh Gordon McSporran, aged 4, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Algoa Bay" in 1881
  • Margaret McSporran, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Algoa Bay" in 1881
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name McSporran (post 1700)


  • Willie McSporran MBE, Scottish former chair of the Hebridean Isle of Gigha's Heritage Trust, brother of Seamus McSporran
  • Seamus McSporran BEM (b. 1938), Scottish tradesman, postmaster and shopkeeper holding 14 jobs for 31 years on the Scottish island of Gigha (population 150). He received the British Empire Medal for his diligent work
  • Jermaine McSporran (b. 1977), English semi-professional footballer

The McSporran 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: Per mare per terras
Motto Translation: By sea and by land.


McSporran Family Crest Products



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