Clan Anderson History

Of all the Clans of Scotland, it is the Anderson name which is bound most intrinsically to the bedrock of Scottish culture. The origin of the name is linked closely to the exalted figure of St Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland, as the name means both "son of Andrew" and "servant of St Andrew". As is often the case with Scottish Clans there are two forms of the name and in the Highlands the Clan is known as MacAndrew ("mac" meaning "the son of" in the Gaelic tongue), with the name Anderson being more widespread in the lowland areas of Scotland. The Clan itself is recorded in the Kinrara manuscript as coming to the lands of Badenoch, in the heart of Clan Chattan territory, from Moidart around 1400.

The strength of the Anderson's was much enhanced by their association with other Clans. The Anderson’s are closely connected with Clan Ross, which is known to the Highlanders as Clan Aindreas, meaning "the children of Andrew" in Gaelic. Clan Aindreas draws its bloodline from the ancient Celtic people of Scotland, compounding the Anderson’s connections to the Scottish nation.

 Since the 15th century the Andersons have also been part of Clan Chattan, the mighty federation of Clans, which is renowned in Scottish history for its strength in the face of any opposition. Clan Chattan, known as "Clan of the Wildcat" traditionally consists of sixteen Clans, including Clan Mackintosh (whose chief is also the chief of Clan Chattan), Clan Macpherson, Clan Davidson and Clan MacBean. The formidable power of this federation is demonstrated in Clan Chattan’s crest of a wildcat, and their foreboding motto "Touch not the cat bot a glove" meaning "don’t touch the cat without a glove", indicating to any enemies that they would have to be well protected before they rile Clan Chattan, or any of the Clans that belonged to it.

Of the famous Andersons, it is perhaps John MacAndrew of Dalnahatnich who reached the most legendary status in the annals of Scotland’s history. MacAndrew, known in Gaelic as Iain Beg (meaning "little John"), was a celebrated Bowman who struck terror into the hearts of those who came into conflict with him. Such unfortunates included a band of Lochaber cattle rustlers who raided Badenoch and drove off a large number of cattle, only to be pursued by a group of men, including the famed Ian Beg MacAndrew. When the thieves were overtaken and a fight ensued, MacAndrew killed most of the cattle rustlers, leaving only one of their number who escaped back to Lochaber to recount the tale.

The Anderson Clan crest is an oak tree with the proud Anderson clan motto "Stand Sure"

Our Clan Anderson jewelry collection can be found here