DNA Day Sale: Save on Family Finder, Y-DNA, & mtDNA. Now through April 25th.


  • 91 members

About us

The McCord DNA Project aims to use genetic science as a supplementary tool to establish the genetic origins of the Scottish families of McCord, who settled in Ulster in the seventeenth century, and the Irish McCourt, an old Oriel sept, who were based in southwest Co. Armagh.  The Scottish surname McCord is often confused with the Irish McCourt in Gaelic Mac Cuarta or Mac Cuairt.  In the seventeenth-century Hearth Money Rolls for Co. Armagh it was spelt as MacQuorte and according to Edward MacLysagh, it belongs now and has belonged as far back as records are available, to counties Armagh and Louth. It also traces the genetic foot print of other families, who emigrated directly from Scotland and Ireland to America and other parts of the English-speaking world. 

In Scotland, the McCords were also known as McKorda, and the Arms of this family are noted in the heraldic manuscript of James Ponts, herald, which was compiled about 1624 and preserved in the Lord Lyon’s Office in Edinburgh. The following has been transcribed from a section containing the names and descriptions of arms of the Scots Gentleman and Lairds.


Or, on a fess sal three pheons or barbed ar on heads of the first between as many man’s hearts gu & a mullet for a difference.

McCorda of Ireland

The same [above], his crest, a savage’s head in his dexter hand a barbed arrow in his sinster a man’s heart, with the motto Via una cor unum.

This information is essentially repeated in Thomas Robson’s Herald of Great Britain and Ireland in 1850.  

M'Cor, [Scotland] Same as M'Corda, Ireland

M'Cord, [Scotland] or, on a fesse sa. betw. three hearts gu. as many pheons of the field. 

M'Corda, [Ireland] The same arms - Crest, a demi Savage, in the dexter hand a barbed arrow, and in the sinister, a heart. 

Motto, Via una, cor unum.  

[Robson, Thomas: The British Herald or Cabinet of Armorial Bearing ofthe Nobility of the Great Britain and Ireland, Vol. II] 

Interestingly, James Pont included a description of the same coat of arms from Ireland? There must have been already another branch of the same family in Ireland from a date prior to 1624 and in the Muster Rolls of Ulster c.1630, there is evidence to show a number of McCords had already settled there before or by the time of the plantation of Ulster in 1610. The names of three McCordy, British tenants are listed in the muster roll for the estate of Sir Henry Tichborne undertaker of 2200 acres, called the Manor of Blessinghourne in the barony of Clogher:

Thomas McCordy, sword and pike.

John McCordy, sword only.

Gilbert McCordy, no arms. 


Elsewhere, we find:

Thomas McCor, a tenant of Francis Hammelton, knight, of the barony of Tullyhunco in Co. Cavan 

John McCord, a tenant of Randel MacDonald, earl of Antrim in Co. Antrim

John McCord, a tenant of Mr. Edmonston of Broadisland near Ballycarry in Co. Antrim

Archibald and William Cord, tenants of Hugh Montgomery, Lord Viscount of Ards in Co. Down

John McCord, a tenant of Hugh Montgomery, Lord Viscount of Ards in Co. Down

John and Gilbert Cord, tenants of Hugh Montgomery, Lord Viscount of Ards in Co. Down


[Hunter, R. J.: Men and Arms; The Ulster settlers, c. 1630 (Belfast, 2012)] 

Further information on the work of the Project can be found under the headings - News and Results.