Skip to content Skip to footer

MacBain (MacBean, McBane, McVane) Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: TOUCH NOT A CATT BOT A TARGE (Don’t touch a cat without a shield)

Let me share with you the incredible history of your family, the Macbains. The MacBain surname, which can also be seen as MacBean, McBane, or McVane, has a remarkable heritage deeply rooted in Scotland. It’s fascinating to know that there are various possible Gaelic origins for our name, but the most likely one is ‘bheathain,’ signifying ‘lively one.’

Your family’s legacy starts with a noble ancestor, a scion of the royal house of Macbeth. This remarkable individual went in search of his kin among the descendants of Gillichattan Mor, often referred to as the Clan Chattan. This connection grew stronger after Malcolm IV managed to rein in the unruly remnants of the Mormaers of Moray. An intriguing chapter in our family story suggests that a Macbain was part of the wedding festivities of Eva, the daughter of Dougal Dall. She was sixth in line from Gillichattan Mor and married Angus, the chief of the Mackintoshes, in 1291.

Your family’s journey is entwined with Scotland’s struggle for independence. The Macbains firmly supported Robert the Bruce in this noble quest. They are even credited with the act of killing the steward of the Red Comyn, whose master had met his end at the hands of Bruce himself in Greyfriars Church in Dumfries back in 1306.

In 1411, at the Battle of Harlaw, your ancestors stood alongside the rest of the Chattan confederation. This battle was a determined effort to reclaim the ancient Lordship of the Isles from the King of Scots. Paul MacBean, the 12th chief, faced challenging times marked by heavy debts, which unfortunately led to the relinquishment of his lands around 1685. The present chiefly line of your family descends from his younger son, as the elder line ended with Elizabeth Margaret MacBean. She married Dougald Stuart around 1790, but sadly, she passed away without any descendants.

The Macbains continued to show their loyalty by supporting the Jacobite rising of 1715. Many were transported to the plantations in America after the Stuart defeat, with some finding their new homes in Virginia, Maryland, and South Carolina. Even in the face of adversity, your ancestors remained resilient. Gillies Mor MacBean, the grandson of the 12th chief, took up a commission as a major to fight for the ‘Young Pretender.’ His heroism at the Battle of Culloden in 1746 is unforgettable. Standing at an imposing 6 feet 4 inches, he valiantly defended the Highlanders and took down 14 enemy soldiers before falling in the attempt.

After the Battle of Culloden, the chief worked tirelessly to preserve the remaining clan lands, but they were eventually sold in 1760. Despite the challenges, the chiefly line of your family has flourished, first in Canada and now in the United States. It’s heartening to know that the chiefs have managed to reclaim some of the clan lands, including the establishment of a memorial park on the beautiful shores of Loch Ness. Your family’s history is a testament to courage, loyalty, and the enduring spirit that has carried us through the ages.

SHARE WITH OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

The Family Crest

Wherever in the world you live, embrace your family heritage and adorn your home with a timeless symbol of your family legacy with our crafted Family Crests.

Family Crest Motto: TOUCH NOT A CATT BOT A TARGE (Don’t touch a cat without a shield)

$99.00

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

Copyright Notice: This artwork is protected by copyright law. Unauthorized reproduction, distribution, or usage of this artwork without explicit permission from ScottishFamilyCrest.com is strictly prohibited.