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MacPherson Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: TOUCH NOT THE CAT BUT A GLOVE

Allow me to recount the vibrant tapestry of your family’s history, the MacPhersons, woven through the fabric of time and generations. Your lineage draws its name from Duncan, Parson of Kingussie, during the 15th century, a figure tracing ancestry back to Muriach Cattenach, Chief of Clan Chattan in 1173. Amid the mid-14th century, Ewan Ban of Badenoch welcomed three sons into the world, heralding the origins of the Macphersons of Clunie, Pitmain, and Invereshie.

A pivotal moment etched in the annals of Clan Chattan’s story unfolded at the Battle of Invernahavon in 1370, as they courageously opposed the invading Camerons. However, an intriguing twist saw the Davidsons (Clan Dhai) assume command, vexing the Macphersons, leading to their withdrawal. This decision left the Davidsons facing the full brunt of the conflict, resulting in their decimation. This event kindled a two-century-long feud between Clan Dhai and the Macphersons.

The ongoing strife against the Camerons for Clan Chattan culminated in a grand contest on the North Inch of Perth in 1396. This epic confrontation unfolded in the presence of Robert III, with Clan Chattan emerging victorious, a moment that resonated through history.

Fast forward to 1722, Duncan Macpherson of Cluny stepped aside as the 11th Chief of Macpherson, passing the mantle to Lachlan Macpherson of Nuid. Echoes of loyalty and determination reverberate in your family’s legacy. In the Royalist Cause, the Macphersons rallied behind the Marquis of Montrose. The 1745 Jacobite Uprising witnessed Ewan Macpherson of Cluny, Lachlan’s son, steadfastly supporting the Jacobite banner. Despite the aftermath of the Battle of Culloden, Ewan adroitly evaded Government troops seeking a bounty on his head, a testament to his resilience.

In a poignant shift, Euan’s son Duncan, accepting the Jacobite defeat, turned his allegiance to the Government, fighting valiantly in the American Wars of Independence. The restoration of the Cluny estate to Duncan in 1784 marked a significant chapter. However, family debts led to the sale of most of Laggan in 1940. Amid this transformation, the Macpherson Clan Association took root, preserving several acres of the Cluny estate as Clan Land in perpetuity. A time-honored tradition, the Clan Macpherson Rally and Newtonmore Highland Games, unite Macphersons from across the globe each August.

Your family’s luminous history extends beyond borders. James Macpherson (1738-96) penned The Highlander in his youth and unveiled “Ossianic” poetry fragments, captivating a global audience. Paul Macpherson (1756-1846) embarked on a scholarly journey, becoming the first Scottish Rector of the Scots College in Rome. Sir John Macpherson Bt (1745-1821) adorned his legacy by joining the East India Company and later becoming Governor General of India. Sir William Macpherson (1926-2021), the 27th Chief of Clan Macpherson, graced both the High Court of England and Wales and the lineage. His passing heralded a new chapter, as James (Jamie) Brodie Macpherson of Cluny embraced the mantle of the 28th Chief of the MacPherson Clan.

Amid the Scottish landscape, your family’s name resonates with profound meaning. The MacPherson legacy shines brightest in the Highland region, encompassing the historic counties of Caithness, Inverness-shire, Nairnshire, Ross and Cromarty, Sutherland, and further extending its reach to Perth and Kinross, as well as the Outer Hebrides. Your family’s story is one of resilience, honor, and an unyielding connection to the land.

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Family Crest Motto: TOUCH NOT THE CAT BUT A GLOVE

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