Clan Carruthers Society (International) uses the term derivations of the name Carruthers to encompass those who are seen as members of the family. The use of the term sept and families linked with larger clans was a commercial move by those wishing to broaden the sales of clan merchandise. Carruthers were wrongly listed as a sept of Bruce from the early 20th century, and although listed by Douglas as a sept, Carruthers is a stand-alone clan with its own line of chiefs. The term sept is taken from the Irish Gaelic, and is now used to describe families associated with highland clans and was never used by Border clans or families.
The Clan Carruthers Society, represents our family and clan worldwide and is accepted as the official society of the Carruthers by our Chief as such. We accept into out fold, all those of our name by ancestry, marriage or adoption and includes derivations of the same: Carrutherses, Caruthers, Carothers, Carrothers, Carrithers, Carithers, Corruthers, Corrithers, Cruthers, Crouthers, Carruther, Creuder, Cardus, Carother, Carouthers, Carradice, Carrauthers, Carrederys, Carrotheris, Carrothorys, Carrothis, Carutherys, Caruthris, Carrothyris, Carruderes, Carruderis, Carruthirs, Carruthoris, Caruderis, Caruyeris, Cerrothers, Corithers, Crathers, Cridders, Curthers, Cruthers, Crowthers, Karruthers, Karruther amongst many others
Interestingly the Council of Scottish Clans & Associations in conjunction with the Clans And Scottish Societies of Canada, have placed on their websites a Find My Clan link to allow interested parties to locate information on their Scottish clan/family. As members of both organisations, we have access to this link as well as the general public. This is an excellent tool and they both should be commended on their work.
About the Clan Carruthers Society:
Initiated by the Royal Charter to John 12th of Holmains in 1755 and built on the historical and genealogical tome; Records of the of the Carruthers Family, by Carruthers and Reid, 1932, which clearly showed our right to be recognised as a stand alone Border Clan and Family, the Society was officially constituted in January 2017. However the investigations, research and hours of networking had been going on since well before 2007.
The Society was the brainchild of our current Convenor, Dr George Carruthers from Fife, a Carruthers armiger who, with the continued support of his family and his good friend Mrs Dana Caruthers Norton of Kansas the journey, took on a momentum of its own. Dr Carruthers wished to honour his fathers memory by raising the profile of Carruthers as a proud Border Clan and Family, by having a Chief officially confirmed by the Lord Lyon in Edinburgh. By ensuring the society was based on facts and, evidence and following the legal route, he felt that this would unify our name under the Chief’s banner for infinate generations to come.
Initially believing Carruthers of Dormont would be Chief, working closely with Mr Antony Maxwell in Edinburgh, it was proven that the Chiefly line of Holmains, still existed.
Based on the wishes of John the 12th of Holmains in 1762, that his chiefship be carried by one of his body (eg son or daughter) from his prenuptual agreement of the time and continuing with the work of Carruthers and Reid in 1932, members of the family researched the history and genealogy of the clan and family. As our first Chiefly line died out in 1548 with the death of Sir Simon Carruthers, 10th Laird and 5th Baron of Mouswald, the Chiefship was then passed to Holmains, as the senior line. The last Chief of Holmains, the 12th Laird and 8th Baron died in 1809, leaving descendants through the female line.
This progressivly led to a Clan Society being formed; Clan Carruthers Society-International (CCSI) to officially represent the Border Reiver family and Clan of Carruthers on both the home and international stage and support the confirmation of a Chief by the Lord Lyon in Edinburgh.
The groundwork of the society itself had been going on since 2007 in an attempt to bring our family together and build on the background genealogical research with a view to becoming an official clan in our own right.
Although a long and arduous process, our evidenced genealogical documentation regarding the heir to the Chiefly line of Carruthers of Holmains was evaluated and analysed by the Lord Lyon and on 19th of August 2019 we are proud to say that Dr Simon Peter Carruthers of Holmains was confirmed Chief of the Name and Arms of Carruthers.
The Chief holds the hereditary position of Honorary President of our Society and through him we are honoured to represent Carruthers and our Chief worldwide
Hailing from the West March of what is now Dumfriesshire (Gaelic – Siorrachd Dhù Phris), in the parish of Middlebie in the Vale of Annandale in the south west border lands of Scotland, we are proud of who and what we are.
About the Clan and Family of Carruthers
Historically, the principal strongholds of our riding family were Mouswald (home of our last Mouswald chief), Holmains (senior in line, who took on the chiefs mantle after Mouswald), Dormont, Wormby and Rammerscales to name but a few. Carruthers as a Clan, lived and rieved in the most dangerous and violent region of the Scottish borders during a time that has been described as ‘Scotland’s Wild West’, in the area of the debatable lands of the West March.
Current DNA research suggests that our line has a Swedish yDNA marker, which appeared around 900 AD, 300 years before the first recorded use of the name Carruthers. As Swedes, unlike their Norwegian and Danish counterparts never invaded, populated nor raided the coastline of Britain, the appearance of such a marker remains a mystery. What is evident is that the male married/interbred with the indiginous female population, ensuring the line continued throgh to this day.
Therefore, at least through the maternal line, it is fair to assume the we can claim our ancestors were from the selgovae, a Brythonic tribe that inhabited the area 1500 years ago. The most accepted origin of the surname of Carruthers appears to allude to the ancient Briton fort called Caer Rydderch or Rythyr, in the area above Middlebie, Annandale, Dumfriesshire. This hypothesis, which has stood the test of time, was promalgated by the historian George Fraser Black who asserted that this means fort of Rydderch, with Ryderch appearing to be a form of personal name.
Carruthers of Dormont further suggest through family legend, “that the Carruthers family may be descendants of ColeHen, King of Cumbria (or Old King Cole as he became known) because one of his sons, Rhideris built a caer, or castle, near Ecclefechan”. This in itself makes Carruthers a topographical name (regional) rather than patronymic (from one male source), although the chiefly line of Holmains, through Mouswald, has been continuous as far back as records have existed.
As surnames only began being used after the Norman invasion of England in 1066, this was promulgated throught the country and into Scotland by the early 12th century. The first record of Carruthers being used was recorded before the charters of lands to the House of the Carruthers of Mouswald in 1320. A William ‘of Carruthers’ was noted as having given a donation to the Abbey at Newbattle in the reign of Alexander II (1215-45).
The clan, accepted as a border family of some repute, are now officially recognised by the Lord Lyon King of Arms, in Edinburgh and are no longer armigerous, but through the confirmation of our Chief, are now legally recognised as a ‘Noble Corporation’ and clan in our own right.
The Carruthers Arms, are not the Arms of the family but the Arms of the Chief, and as such belong to him. The use of the seraphim (Seraphim Volent Proper), being the clan crest of the chief within the belt and buckle and upon which is inscribed the Chiefs Motto (Promprus et Fidelis) shows the wearer offers fealty to the Clan Chief.
Dr. S. Peter Carruthers of Holmains, Chief of the Name and Arms of Carruthers
Carruthers Chief’s Arms
(Registered by John Carruthers 9th of Holmains, 5th Baron, in 1672):
Gules (Red), two chevrons engrailed between three fleurs de lis Or (Gold), supported by two fallow deer bucks rampant Proper.
Seraphim Volent Proper
Always depicted as six wings, the upper and lower crossed in saltire, the middle as in flight and an angelic face in the centre
Promptus Et Fidelis (Ready and faithful)
Clan Plant Badge
Yellow Gorse (ulex europaeus)
Clan Carruthers Badge
Clansmen and Clanswomen may wear the crest of the chief, enclosed in a belt and buckle upon which is inscribed the Chief’s motto (Promptus et Fidelis)
Clan Carruthers Tartan
Red Carruthers (STR 11700)
The Red Carruthers tartan is the official clan tartan of Carruthers and recorded and categorised by the Scottish Register of Tartans as the Carruthers Clan/Family Tartan. It is to be worn with pride, by all who pledge fealty to the Clan Chief Carruthers of Holmains.
Clan Convenors Personal Tartan
Carruthers (STR 11699)
Dr Peter Carruthers of Holmains, Chief of the Name and Arms of Carruthers
Bruce Nigel Mitchell-Carruthers
James Andrew Carruthers of Dormont
Dr George Carruthers FSA Scot
Gary John Carruthers FSA Scot
Clan Carruthers Society International are recognised as the official society of our family and clan and are members of CASSOC (Clans and Scottish Societies of Canada), SAHC (Scottish-Australian Heritage Counci) in Australia and COSCA (Council of Scottish Clans and Associations) in the US, with all the benefits derived from the same.