Dewar Clan

Dewar Crest: Issuant from a crest-cornet Or of four (three visible) strawberry leaves, a dexter arm vambraced, brandishing a sword proper, hilted and pommelled Or

Dewar Clan Motto: Quid Non Pro Patria (What will a man not undergo for his country)

Dewar Clan History:

The name “Dewar” derives from the word Deoradh, meaning “A Pilgrim”. In medieval Celtic times, the Deoradh was responsible for the safekeeping of the relics of a Saint, hence the family of that name in Perthshire who were custodians of the Crozier of St Fillan, an 8th century Irish hermit monk who was later canonised. On Robert the Bruce's command, the Crozier (or staff) was carried by the Scottish army at the Battle of Bannockburn.

There is also the branch of the family which is said to take its name from the Parish of Dewar in the Parish of Heriot in Midlothian. Two Dewars, Thomas and Piers, rendered homage to Edward I of England in 1296.  Thereafter, in the late fifteenth century, a Charter of the Lands of Dewar was granted by Lord Borthwick confirming the lands of Dewar to William Dewar, whose successors in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries styled themselves “of that Ilk.”

Remaining in the same area, the family moved from Dewar to Carrington, then to Vogrie near Gorebridge. In 1719, David Dewar of Vogrie appears as Postmaster General of Leith and Edinburgh, and his son matriculated arms in 1747. With the discovery of large deposits of coal at Vogrie towards the end of the eighteenth century, the family prospered. From a branch of the family settled around Stirling in the fifteenth century emerged the Dewars of Cambuskenneth.

The 5th Laird of Vogrie became a High Court Judge and lived for most of his life in India, his brother and heir serving with the Bengal Cavalry. Their descendant Vice Admiral Kenneth Dewar at one time commanded the battleship HMS Royal Oak.

The Dewar family Scotch Whisky business in Perthshire became immensely success under the control of John Dewar, born 1856, and his brother Thomas “Tommy”, born 1864. John Dewar was created Baron Forteviot of Dupplin in 1917 at the same time as his younger brother Tommy was made Baron Dewar.

The Chiefship of the Clan, recognised by the Lord Lyon King of Arms in 1990, continues in the Vogrie line.

Places of Interest:
Dupplin Castle, Aberdalgie, Dupplin Estate, Perthshire.  Built by the earls of Kinnoull, but sold to Lord Forteviot of the Dewar Scotch whisky family in the early 20th century. The original house was demolished during the 1960s and replaced by the modern house.

St Fillan's Cave (entrance from Cove Weem), Pittenweem, Fife. There is a well and spring
named in honour of Saint Fillan.

There are the remains of St Fillan's monastery at Strath Fillan in Perthshire.

Vogrie Country Park, Dewartown Gorebridge, Midlothian. Vogrie House and estate was owned by the Dewar family from the mid-18th century until 1964, when it was sold to Midlothian Council.

The National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh. Location of the Crozier Staff (The Coigrich) of Saint Fillan.

Surname distribution in Scotland: The Dewar surname occurs most often in Perth and Kinross (Perthshire and Kinross-shire), Fife, Dundee City, Angus and Stirlingshire.

Purchase a Clan Dewar certificate.