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Rattray Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: SUPER SIDERA VOTUM (My desires extend beyond the stars)

Let me regale you with a tale that spans the annals of time, a tale that weaves through history, courage, and the indomitable spirit of your family, the Rattrays. Your family’s journey begins with a Barony – the Barony of Rattray, a place known as “Raith Tour,” which translates to “Hill Fort.” It was a realm acquired not as a mere Sept, but as followers of the Murrays of Atholl. In the intricate tapestry of your family lineage, tradition whispers of a connection to Malcolm Canmore, suggesting that the Rattrays secured their lands in the 11th century. While the first recorded bearer of the name was Sir Thomas de Rattray, the son of Alanus of Ratheriff, whose union with the heiress Christian of Aberbothric in 1253 marked a momentous year in your family’s saga.

Amid the winds of change, Eustace de Rettref’s captivity at Dunbar Castle in 1296 left an indelible mark. Sir Adam de Rotrefe chose to pay homage to Edward I, possibly as a result of Eustace’s ordeal. Your family’s abode, Rattray Castle, was once situated further down Glen Ericht, but in the 16th century, the clan made a strategic move to a clifftop haven, 200 feet above the River Ericht. This strategic shift was in response to the ambitions of John Stewart, 2nd Earl of Atholl, who coveted your family’s lands.

The legacy of valor flows through generations. Consider Sir Silvester Rattray of Rattray, a parliamentarian and a peacemaker who negotiated with England in 1463. His steward mother’s legacy connected him to estates near Fortingall in Atholl. In this intricate tapestry, tragedy and courage interlace, as Sir John Rattray’s demise at the Battle of Flodden in 1513 led to the sacking of Rattray Castle. The abduction of his granddaughters plunged your family into a tumultuous period. Your family’s resilience shone through as Patrick, Sir John’s second son, built a fortress on the site of the present-day house.

These were times of adversity and triumph, encapsulating the resilience of your family. Through love and determination, the rightful inheritance was reclaimed as Marjory Stewart married Silvester Rattray. This tale leads to the storied halls of Craighall Castle, named after Marjory’s first husband’s tower in Fife.

The Restoration marked a renaissance, as Patrick Rattray orchestrated the remodeling of Craighall Castle. Your family’s dedication and influence were acknowledged as one Free Barony under ‘Craighall-Rattray.’ Across the landscape of history, your family’s legacy echoed through the Jacobite Uprising, where loyalty and conviction stood tall. Contributions were made, alliances forged, and your family’s heart was intertwined with the tapestry of the times.

With the winds of time, your family’s journey traversed the globe, embracing far corners like South Africa, the USA, New Zealand, Canada, and Australia. The Rattray name carried with it a legacy of strength, courage, and service, influencing the world in ways both grand and subtle.

Now, as you stand at this juncture of your family’s history, remember that you are the living embodiment of a storied past. You carry forward a heritage of valor, resilience, and global connection. Your family’s narrative is one of triumphs, unity, and the enduring spirit that shapes destinies. Embrace this legacy with pride, for your family’s story continues to unfold in the chapters yet to be written.


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: SUPER SIDERA VOTUM
(My desires extend beyond the stars)



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