McGill / Family History
The ancient origin of the name McGill was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. Meaning 'son of Gill', McGill is a baptismal name. This name is of Celtic origin and is found throughout England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It is found in many mediaeval manuscripts in these countries. Examples of such are a Richard Gille, Cambridge, who was recorded in the 'Hundred Rolls', England, in the year 1273 and a Robert Gille who was recorded in the 'Poll Tax' of the West Riding of Yorkshire in the year 1379. In Scotland a payment was made to John Gill of Perth in the year 1328, and a John Gylle is recorded Burgess in Perth, in the year 1333. In Ireland the name means 'foreigner' and is found in the 1659 Petty's Census, which they recorded as McGill, and was very numerous in County Antrim, especially in the Barony of Glenarm. The same document gives Gill as a common name in County Longford. The name McGill is also an abbreviated form of the many names that begin with 'Mac Giolla'. The Gaelic word 'giolla' means 'lad' and may be another form of this name and its variants, which are now quite widespread.The McGill family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including McGill descendants.