Just getting started, we hope to help sort out the over 100 different spellings of the name. The MacGillivray Clan traditionally was from the Western Highlands in the areas of Ardnamurchen, Mull, Lochaber and Moidart. They spread to Inverness and Skye. The hope of this project is to better understand how the MacGillivray clan spread and how they are connected to each other was well as to other clans.
The Clan MacGillivray was an important clan even before the Norsemenwere driven out of the Outer Hebrides by king Somerled who was Lord of the Isles in the 12th century. In 1222 Alexander II of Scotland subdued Argyll and the Clan Mhic Gillebrath became dispersed. Some of the clan remained on the Isle of Mull while others stayed in Morvern. There is a tradition that asserts that the chief of the clan placed himself under the protection of the chiefs of Clan Mackintosh, who were also chiefs of the Chattan Confederation. Thereafter the Clan MacGillivray belonged to the Clan Chattan.
The MacGillivray clan was first accurately recorded in Dunmaglass in 1549. In 1609 there was a great gathering of the Chattan Confederation at which loyalties were given to the Mackintosh chief and the haill kin and race of Macgillivray was represented by Malcolm MacGillivray of Dalcrombie and Duncan MacGillivray of Dunmaglass.