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  1. #1
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    Glencoe MacIan or Clan Johnstone?

    So...

    I thought I had completed my genealogical studies last year when I gave my presentation to my family at our reunion. I had plenty of evidence that put the relatives of emigrant patriarch Daniel Johnson at the Battle of Sheriffmuir (1715). I had plenty of circumstantial evidence to link him to Johnstons of Caskieben. So-- I bought my son and I Johnston Modern kilts. They are awesome and we wore them to the Games in May. However, a cousin (who paid out the nose for several DNA tests) was contacted by Clan Donald in Scotland noting our DNA connection with Glencoe MacIans (Johnsons). I joined Clan Johnston/e in America last year with certainty. However, I had not renewed my membership this year as there is a mound of evidence that we are not in fact Johnstons but MacIans.

    QUESTION: Is it improper to be part of a Clan to which we have no kin? MacIans were obviously a sept of Clan Donald so do I sell my kilt for the Glencoe Kilt? I think I'm talking myself into it as I write...

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    7th February 11
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    Okay my friend, you are confusing two things.

    Your clan is who you are. Your clan association is a club for members & devotees of a clan.

    So your clan...
    ...is a group of relatives, close and distant, so you belong to them without paying any dues or registering. They're family. You're family. You just are. Your clan has no executive. They're just relatives. It may or may not have reunions. They all wear one or more tartans associated with the clan by history or tradition and usually has a clan chief who is the leader by heritage. You can't join your clan; you're born into it.

    Your clan association...
    ...is a club. It has a president and other executive who are elected by some method. It requires registration and dues. Its purpose is to unite those who are already united by blood, but in a more social sense. You have to join the association in order to belong, but it is not your clan. It is a club. No matter what clan you may or may not through blood and heritage belong to, you don't belong to your clan association unless you pay dues.

    Now... MacIan and Johnston/Johnson/Johnstone are just different ways of spelling the same clan name. "Mac" means son of and "Ian" is one of the sons of John, thus "John's son" or "Johnson". It's important to understand that spelling wasn't really very important until the last century or so, so there are a lot of variations. I am a Sinclair - also a St. Clair, a Santo Claro, and a Sinkler. They're all just various ways of spelling the same name.

    Hope that helps, and now, enjoy the fact that you ARE a member of the clan, whether you like it or not. Your clan association, well whether you belong to that or not is up to you. It's a social group for members of your clan.
    Last edited by Father Bill; 21st August 18 at 12:01 PM.
    Rev'd Father Bill White: Retired Parish Priest & Elementary Headmaster, lover of God, people (most of them!) dogs, joy, humour & clarity. Legion Padre, theologian, teacher, philosopher, linguist, dreamer, traditionalist, bon-vivant, encourager of hearts & souls & a firm believer in dignity, decency, & duty. A proud Sinclair.

  3. The Following 2 Users say 'Aye' to Father Bill For This Useful Post:


  4. #3
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    Thank you Father...

    I get the difference between association and DNA. That's kinda my point. I am also aware that MacIan and Johnson mean the same thing. It seems disingenuous to associate with the Johnstons and wear their tartan when I have history and blood kin to the MacDonalds of Glencoe.

    FWIW... I to am Catholic

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Franklin View Post
    FWIW... I to am Catholic
    Well, not perhaps what you meant, but so am I - "Anglo-Catholic".
    Rev'd Father Bill White: Retired Parish Priest & Elementary Headmaster, lover of God, people (most of them!) dogs, joy, humour & clarity. Legion Padre, theologian, teacher, philosopher, linguist, dreamer, traditionalist, bon-vivant, encourager of hearts & souls & a firm believer in dignity, decency, & duty. A proud Sinclair.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    21st December 05
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    As Father Bill says, different spellings of the same name, son of John. MacIan in the Highlands. Johnson in the Lowlands. Or maybe Johnstone?:-
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clan_Johnstone
    Vice-President and Regional Director for Scotland for Clan Cunningham International, and a Scottish Armiger.

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