Ferguson Clan Crest: Upon a chapeau, a bee on a thistle.
Ferguson Clan Motto: Dulcius Ex Asperis (Sweeter after difficulties).
Ferguson Clan History:
The Fergussons first appear in Kintyre, and Kilkerran, the name of the Clan Seat in Ayrshire, derives from St Ciaran, one of the twelve apostles of Ireland who landed at Dalruadhain in the 6th century. The Fergussons in Argyllshire claim descent from Fergus Mor mac Erc, King of Scots c.500. The Fergussons of Kilkerran in Ayrshire descend from Fergus, Lord of Galloway in the reigns of David I and Malcolm IV. The Fergussons of Craigdarroch in Dumfriesshire have a recorded history that dates from a Charter from David II in the 14th century.
By the 13th century, the name was widespread throughout the South West of Scotland. Sir John Fergusson of Kilkerran fought for the Royalist cause during the Civil War in the 17th century and his estates fell heavily into debt. His grandson, also Sir John, restored the family fortunes by becoming a successful lawyer, and his son, James, became a Judge of the Supreme Court, taking the legal honorarium of Lord Kilkerran.
The Fergussons of Dunfallandy, near Pitlochry in Perthshire, were Jacobite supporters who took part in both the 1715 and 1745 Uprisings. Other branches of the family include the Fergussons of Pitfour, one of whom became a High Court Judge in 1763. Ronald Fergusson of Raith, near Kirkcaldy in Fife, was Member of Parliament for Leith Burghs from 1886 to 1914, when he was appointed Governor General of Australia.
The poet Robert Fergusson (1750-74) was much admired by his near contemporary Robert Burns, who erected a monument to his memory in the Canongate Kirk, Edinburgh. Adam Ferguson (1723-1816) was Chaplain to the Black Watch and became Keeper of the Advocates Library in Edinburgh while writing extensively. Patrick Ferguson (1744-80) was inventor of the breach-loading rifle. Sir James Fergusson (1832-1907) was Governor General of South Australia from 1868-72; of New Zealand from 1872-4, and of Bombay, 1880-85. J.D. Fergusson (1874-1961) was a noted painter, based in Glasgow. Sir Bernard Fergusson, 1st Lord Ballantrae (1911 - 1980) was Governor General of New Zealand, 1962-67.
Places of Interest:
Kilkerran House, Maybole, Ayrshire. Seat of Chief of Clan Fergusson. Dundrennan Abbey, Kirkcudbright. established in 1142 by Fergus of Galloway. Today a ruin, it is maintained by Historic Scotland.
Surname distribution throughout Scotland: The Ferguson name is most common in the Hebrides, Ayrshire, Stirlingshire Glasgow City, Dunbartonshire, Renfrewshire, Lanarkshire and Perth and Kinross.
Associated family names (Septs): Fergus, Fergie, Ferries, Fergusson, Forgie, Keddie, Kiddie, MacAdie, MacFergus, MacKeddie, MacKerras, MacKersey.