Our Clan and Family Society
The work to bring our international family together in harmony and unity, began 12 years ago in 2007. The idea was to inform and educate those with an interest in who we were and where we came from. This was based on our rich and sometimes, romantic or violent Carruthers history and heritage as a Scottish Border Reiver Clan of the West March.
It all started with a Facebook page in 2007, which soon attracted attention from those of our name and those inquisitive about both our past and our place in Scottish culture. As interest grew and networking began, which included discussions with Chiefs of other Clans, Scottish and tartan historians, genealogists, experts in Scottish heraldry and clan law and contacts made within the Lyon Court itself, the drive to have our Clan officially recognised through the confirmation of a Chief began.
The process was initiated by Dr George Carruthers, a Fifer from Dunfermline, whose father used to tell him stories of the family and it was these which in later life piqued his interest in the history of the Clan Carruthers. At this point it is fair to state that some recognise Carruthers as a family rather than a clan and this is a highly respected stance. However Carruthers was been named as one of the 17 unruly Clans in the 1587 Act of the Scottish Parliament, named as a clan in Court Records and in fact, mentioned in the family history by A. Stanley Carruthers FSA (Scot) and R. C. Reid as such. It is therefore a personal choice which side of the fence one comes down upon and both are equally accepted. Accepting the vast majority of Carruthers live outside our ancestral homelands in Dumfriesshire, the recognition and perception of a Scottish family as a Clan in its own right has progressively become both common place and now a normal collective term for a Scottish family, whether highland, lowland or borders. This situation is a reoccuring theme within other border families and clans at home as well as within the international Scottish cultural community.
Visual Recognition and Genealogy
Therefore, in order for Carruthers to be taken seriously and to be seen as an entity in its own right, the concept introduced in the 1800’s of being a sept of Bruce had to be reassesed. This has been discussed with a senior members of the Family of Bruce and they were happy with our chosen path. Clan Carruthers therefore has set out to stand as a separate and distinct clan, reflecting what we have always been, a proud Riding Family of the West March.
Part of the visual construct of any clan of course is its tartan, the Red Carruthers was registered with the Scottish Tartan Register in 2017 and is now the official tartan of our Society. Again it is fair to state that Clan/family tartans only really came into vogue in the 1800’s, to include those of highland clans. Prior to that tartans were usually regional in pattern based on what the local weaver produced.
As borderers never wore the kilt, family tartans were never utilised although that is changing and one of the first to embrace a tartan of their own was clan Armstrong’s in 1842.
The legitimacy of tartans are now maintained and registered through one single source; the Scottish Register of Tartans. This agency was established by an act of the Scottish Parliament in November 2008, following a Member’s Bill submitted by Jamie McGrigor MSP in February 2007. It compiled all tartans previously recorded by the Scottish Tartans Society (STS), the Scottish Tartans Authority (STA) and/or the Scottish Tartans World Register (STWR). NB At no time has any Tartan Register been destroyed, irrelevant of the claims made by the unscrupulous.
With this done, artwork was commissioned for our clan badge by a well-known Scottish heraldic artist based in Edinburgh and further artwork followed for our armorials etc.
With regards the clan badge, clansmen and clanswomen may wear the crest from their clan’s Chiefly Arms, in our case the Seraphim, encircled by a belt and buckle on which is engraved the motto of the chief, again in our case; Promptus et Fidelis (Ready and Faithful) , this may be used on their bonnets, jackets, kilt, or sash. Only a Chief, Chieftain or armiger May use feathers in their caps and only the Lord Lyon May confirm a Scottish Clan Chief and permit an I individual to bear the chiefly arms of that clan.
Work had already began on researching the genealogy of our senior lines and initially James Andrew Carruthers of the cadet branch of Dormont was the one most easily found, however further investigation located a direct descendent of John 12th, last chief of the line of Holmains. His name is Dr Simon Peter Carruthers. Genealogical evidence and other supporting documentation was presented to the Lord Lyon.
As a clan a compilation of evidence of our family’s genealogy had already been carried out by Carruthers and Reid in their book ‘The Records of the Carruthers Family”, but further information and documentation in order to substantiate these claims had to be found.
A hearing of the Lyon Court was held in Edinburgh on October 31 2018 and further clarification of the facts was requested. These have to be with the Lord Lyon by February 2019, after which a final hearing will be held and at which point, we are informed, the Lyon will make a decision. (UPDATE: a Chief was confirmed by the Lord Lyon on 19/08/19. Dr Simon Peter Carruthers of Holmains, was recognised as Chief of the Name and Arms of Carruthers.)
In Scottish only confirmed chiefs or heads of clans, families, or names bear undifferenced arms. A clan is considered a “noble incorporation” because a clan chief is a title of honour in Scotland and the chief confers his or her noble status onto the clan. Because armigerous clans do not have such chiefs, they are not recognised as noble communities and have no legal standing under Scots Law.
Sadly a rogue group in America run by a business (LLC) out of Minnesota and started in 2017, have hindered our progress for unity somewhat.
Their bizarre claims of personal ownership of the Bruce tartan, their claims of decendancy from royalty, famous people and even giants based on no real historical evidence, have left many of us scratching our heads in wonder and many others whom we asked for help and advice from, asking if we are associated with them. The answer of course is no.
They have misused our Chiefs arms, merging them with that of the Arms of the British Royalty and the Arms of the City of London. This is an obvious attempt to portray some semblance of credibility, when they actually have none within the clan in general.
Their actions have caused serious upset within our own folks, both in Scotland and abroad. They further claim amongst many of their statements, of recognition by the College of Arms in London, which we are advised is also totally false.
In the autumn of this year, knowing full well of the path we were traveling they self proclaimed a Chief and Chieftains but sadly for them, none of the individuals involved have any credence nor recognition within our clan nor in fact external to it by those who celebrate our Scottish history and culture.
For this reason, this journey has not been easy for us and has taken a few twists and turns over these many years. However, accepting these trials and tribulations, we as a society continue to persevere along the arduous legal route for recognition. Although sometimes seeming to be both tedious and frustrating it remains the only sensible route to confirmation of a Scottish Clan Chief and whatever the outcome, remains the only credible way for us to go,
However, although daunting at times, it is the support we have received from such stalwarts as those listed below in our Clan Society Council, that have allowed us to continue towards our goal. One which we very much hope to achieve in the early part of 2019.
-CLAN CARRUTHERS SOCIETY INTERNATIONAL – COUNCIL-
CCSI OFFICERS AND COUNCIL MEMBERS
Dr Simon Peter Carruthers of Holmain, Chief of the Name and Arms of Carruthers (19/08/19)
James Andrew Carruthers (Dormont)
George Carruthers (UK)
George Carruthers, George Haig, Stuart Carruthers.
CCSI EXECUTIVE COUNCIL:
George Carruthers FSA Scot (UK)
Dana Caruthers Norton (US)
Cécelia Mitchell-Carruthers (France)
George Haig (UK)
William Carruthers (UK)
Graham Carruthers (Can)
Laura Carruthers (UK)
Clan Commissioner – USA:
Dana Caruthers Norton (USA)
Clan Commissioner – Europe:
Cécilia Mitchell-Carruthers (France)
Clan Commissioner – Canada:
Clan Commissioner – Australia:
Graham Carruthers (Aus)
CCSI COUNCIL MEMBERS (Non- Executive);
Journal Committee (Prompts et Fidelis):
George Carruthers (UK) ,
Zelda M Carruthers (Canada)
Laura Carruthers (UK )
Gary Carruthers (Aus)
Clan Secretary Australia:
Craig Monument (Aus)
Stuart A. Carruthers (UK)
David Newton (US)
Clan Carruthers Society Piper:
William Carruthers (UK)
Clan Carruthers Society Sword Bearer:
James A. Carruthers (UK)
Clan Carruthers Society Banner Bearer:
Stuart Carruthers (UK)
Clan Carruthers Genealogist:
Dana Caruthers Norton (USA)
Clan Society Genealogist – Australia:
Gary Carruthers (Aus)
Clan Carruthers Historian:
Craig H. Carothers (USA)
George Carruthers, started life as an engineer, leaving Scotland to travel and work in such far off lands as Africa and the Middle East. In 1990 tired of the life, he decided to change careers, returning to academia and graduated as a Chiropractor from the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic, now the AECC University College. Both his Bachelors degree and his subsequent Masters degree are from Portsmouth University.
George also holds professional fellowships in the Royal College of Chiropractors (UK) and the European Academy of Chiropractic in Orthopaedics.
He has trained in Shotokan karate since the early 70’s, attaining senior gradings from his Japanese instructors along the way. His career in the martial arts culminated at the age of 65 when he was awarded 9th Dan from the International Shotokan Karate Shihankai for his contributions to his art.
He is an Armiger of Clan Carruthers, a Burgess and Freeman of Glasgow and is honoured to hold a Fellowship in the Society of Antiquaries (Scotland) for his work on Carruthers clan history.
Originating, as did all Carruthers, in Annandale in Dumfriesshire, George’s ancestors lived in the nearby county of Lanarkshire in the parish of Lesmahagow before moving to Fife at the turn of the 1900’s.
His goal is to see a Carruthers Chief and Head of that Name, being officially confirmed by the Lord Lyon. His wish is to leave a legacy, in his fathers name in order that our family and clan may all benefit from that official recognition, wearing it with pride and as a badge of honour for our children and their children, well into the future.
So please, if you feel inclined, do not forget to fill in our Clan Roll Call to show support to the Lyon Court for the process we are engaged in to have a chief of our name confirmed and through them, official clan status.
The Clan Carruthers Society International (CCSI) was founded in January 2017 and is officially recognised by the Chief of Carruthers as representing the worldwide Carruthers family. It is non-commercial, apolitical and non-partisan and is open to any member of the international Carruthers family and derivatives of that name. The Society is based in the United Kingdom, but is represented by an international Executive Council.