Turnbull Clan Crest: A bulls head.
Turnbull Clan Motto: I Saved The King.
History of Clan Turnbull:
In the 14th century, William of Rule, a Borders man, saved the life of Robert the Bruce when he was attacked by a wounded bull. He was well rewarded and thereafter was known as Turnbull.
The Rule Water, home of the Turnbulls, was a baronial possession of the House of Douglas, so often in conflict with the ruling House of Stewart. By 1510, the Turnbulls had become so resistant to the authority of James IV that he decided to make an example of them and 200 members of the family were summoned to appear before him wearing linen sheets, swords in hands and halters around their necks. Some were hanged and others imprisoned.
In the following century, the unsettled character of the Borders continued and caused James VI and I to instruct his Wardens to use 'hostile feud in hostile manner against all malefators.' A large scale dispersal began at this time, especially after the Chiefly branches of Bedrule and Minto became financially broken and quantities of clansmen sailed to the Carolinas, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland
The Turnbulls had owned the Philiphaugh Estates in the Ettrick Forest for 300 years. The Murrays acquired part of the lands through marriage, then all of them after the last of the direct Turnbull line died in 1572.
Wiliam Turnbull (c.1410-54) was Archdeacon of Lothian and became Bishop of Glasgow in 1447. He obtained the go-ahead for the foundation Glasgow University. Sir Winton Turnbull (1899-1980) was born in Hamilton, Victoria, of Scottish descent, and became a prominent Australian politician. Stanley Clive Perry Turnbull (1906- 1975) was born in Glenorchy, Tasmania and became a distinguished Australian author.
Surname distribution in Scotland: The Turnbull surname is most commonly found in the Scottish Borders (the historic counties of Berwickshire, Peeblesshire, Roxburghshire and Selkirkshire), Edinburgh City, the Lothians (Linlithgowshire, Edinburghshire and Haddingtonshire), Dumfries and Galloway (Dumfriesshire, Kirkcudbrightshire and Wigtownshire), Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Clackmannanshire, Fife and Perth and Kinross.
Places of Interest:
Fatlips Castle, Denholm, Roxburghshire. Ruined seat of the Turnbulls of Barnhill.
Barnshills Castle, River Teviot, Roxburghshire. The ivy covered ruins of this 16th century Turnbull stronghold can be seen.
Bedrule Castle, Rule Valley, Roxburghshire. The ruins of this Turnbull stronghold, destroyed by the English in 1545, can be seen 200 yards from the church.
Minto estate on River Teviot, Roxburghshire. Held by the Turnbulls before passing to the Elliott in the 17th century.
Philiphaugh estates, Roxburghshire. These lands in the Ettrick Forest were held for 300 years and acquired by the Murray Family through marriage.