Printable Version of Topic
Click here to view this topic in its original format
Celtic Radio Community > Gathering of the Clans > Clan Membership

Posted by: gwenlee 20-Jun-2006, 04:06 PM
As a lot of you know I am very active with Clan Donnachaidh, and I am also active with Scottish Country Dancing. I hold a position with both of these organization, of course membership is always on the agenda.

So here is my question. When you join a Clan what do you expect from your membership? Are any of you active volunteers? I'm interested in your input and and I'd like to know what your Clan does for their member?

Posted by: cscunningham 25-Jun-2006, 03:05 PM
Great question.

I joined Clan Cunningham USA 3 years ago and volunteer to host our Clan Tent at Games and Highland Festivals here in New England. I later was appointed the Regional Director for the New England/New York, a position I hold today. This year I plan to host a Clan Cunningham Tent at 6 regional festivals. This is a great way to learn about one Clan history and to meet fellow clan members.

Three months ago I was asked to join the Board of Directors as the national Membership Coordinator and if my involvement was not enough, my wife who a a degree in journalism is the Newsletter Editor.

I have also created a web-site for the New England/New York Region - - which has a list of celtic, Scottish and Irish activities throughout the region along with links to other Cunningham web-sites.

I have enjoyed my involvement with Clan Cunningham USA. The only down side is unfortunately Clan Cunningham has two clan organizations here in the United States which can and has caused some confusions among our fellow clansman and women. Hopefully some day we the members of Clan Cunningham will be able to unite under one banner.


Posted by: MacEoghainn 25-Jun-2006, 05:18 PM
Card carrying member of Clan Macpherson, MacLachlan, and Clan Ewing in America.

I mainly belong for the Genealogical information available through the Clans. Get a newsletter from each one quarterly. I'm participating in Clan Ewing's DNA study, which will hopefully help clear up family relationships where the paper trail is vague or non-existent.

Posted by: Nancy-Raven 09-Aug-2006, 04:56 PM
Well the question is good but can I inverse it? When you join a clan what is expect from you.Everyone cannot have important position in organisation and many have lot of obligation.How much involve in activities should you be to be consider active?

As you know or maybe not , I wish to join a clan but as an adherent member because for the moment I do not know if I have any scottish blood somewhere since I do not know the family of my father,I know so little about them.I have to write a letter to the chief and the council to explain why but I don't know how active they will expect from me .

I enjoy doing re-enactment.I play a women from Scotland in the 9th century.When I go to activities like the highland games I wear an old arisad made with a tartan.People are curious and ask a lot of questions and I also enjoy to answer.I know tartan are from a family which have an history.I personnally do not like people who take the name and the tartan from a family and ignore who they are.Well my point is I'm not part of the clan and in no manner I take the name of it but I explain to people it's more then a piece of fabric.Well I will stop there because I can write pages about this-more detail in old message in the Scotland forum.

As you are member of clan ,how do you feel or react when you see people wearing your tartan and have no idea of what it represent?And what did you expect from new member who join the clan and for adherent member?

Posted by: BluegrassLady 21-Sep-2006, 04:23 AM
I have been a member of Clan Armstrong for just over a year. I joined because of a pride in my Scottish heritage, and a hope to discover more about it. The clan newsletter is helpful and the contact with other clan members at festivals is both fun and interesting. So far, I haven't contributed anything other than membership dues. smile.gif Hope to be more active in the future.


Posted by: sisterknight 21-Sep-2006, 08:37 AM
i'm a member of the campbell clan in canada....but i also am of mc gregor sometimes feuds do die out!!!hehehe

Posted by: jedibowers 21-Sep-2006, 10:48 AM
QUOTE (MacEoghainn @ 25-Jun-2006, 07:18 PM)
Card carrying member of Clan Macpherson, MacLachlan, and Clan Ewing in America.

I mainly belong for the Genealogical information available through the Clans. Get a newsletter from each one quarterly. I'm participating in Clan Ewing's DNA study, which will hopefully help clear up family relationships where the paper trail is vague or non-existent.

Can you forward me info on the Clan MacLachlan. I'm also from Clan MacEwan, but have not seen any clan tents at the games that I go to in Indiana.

Posted by: gwenlee 23-Sep-2006, 08:54 AM
As a member and an officer I get very frustrated with members who complain that we never do anything as an organization. They complain when newsletters come out late or because we are not at certain events. Yet these same people never volunteer for anything. Last year at a game we had some not too nice people yell at us. They had all sort of complaints some were justified some were not. But I think people forget that we are a volunteer group. No one gets paid, we pay for our own expenses of coming to the games and we take time out of our schedule to have gathering through out the year. I applaud all of you who take the time to participate. I think you will find that you can have wonderful time making new friend and perhaps learning a few new thing.

Now as to who wears our tartan. I have no problem with people who chose to wear it. There are a lot of people who don't have any Scottish ancestry but have a love for the culture/history. I know there are those who feel differently. But do you know that about 75 percent of those from a Scottish ancestry have no ties to a clan? But for you who feel uncomfortable wearing a tartan that is not yours check and see it your state has an offical tartan. I know that Georgia and Tenn. have a tartan, for you die hard southern rebels there is a Confederate Gray tartan. For a friend of mine I bought her Scotlands national tartan.

Posted by: jedibowers 23-Sep-2006, 07:13 PM
Indiana is working on an official tartan. We need to get it entered as a bill. We are hoping to get it approved by Tartan Day, April 6th.

Posted by: Senara 27-Sep-2006, 09:09 AM
QUOTE (jedibowers @ 21-Sep-2006, 11:48 AM)
Can you forward me info on the Clan MacLachlan. I'm also from Clan MacEwan, but have not seen any clan tents at the games that I go to in Indiana.

websites for Clan MacLachlan: MacLachlans of N. Amer. Claflin Family Association (a string of cousins that I'm decended from)

And if those aren't enough of a start for you let me know. I've got a few more at home.

Posted by: jedibowers 27-Sep-2006, 09:36 AM
Thanks! I will check these sites out.

Posted by: TandVh 24-Jun-2007, 11:02 AM
We are proud members of the Clan Henderson Society of the United States and Canada. I joined in order to furthur my Clan name and indentify with my Scottish heritage. I had no expectations as far as active involvement goes, but we are currently considering representing the clan at the annual Fresno Highland Games. We contacted the regional director of our society and he assures us that the clan society would certainly endorse our representing the clan at any local events. He offered the use of materials he has available - brochures, banner, informational displays, etc. if we make the commitment.
I'd certainly like to do it, but, money could be a problem. We're an agricultural family here in the SanJuaquin Valley, California, and we had a devestating freeze wipe out 50-60% of the citurs crop this year. So- that translates to tougher times as far as extras go this year.
I am going to try to participate, though. We are excited about getting involved and the clan march at the games is so very cool! The local organizer tells us that she has been trying to get a Clan Henderson presence for years and is excited that we may be able to do it.
We are currently trying to get together enough Henderson Ancient tartan to make a couple of great kilts to wear to the games.
There are several hurdles we need to clear, but, we are very hopeful and, God willing, we will have a booth this year.

Posted by: gwenlee 05-Jul-2007, 02:10 PM
TandVH: I am sorry to hear about your crops. We too in Georgia have had a rough year in agriculture. This past spring we had a bad frost which wiped out most of the blueberry and peach crop, and now we are dealing with a drought. I have 2 horses and hay is a fortune.

I think it is great that you are interested in becoming active with your clan. When someone host a game for us the admission tickets are included and we provide what is needed such as banners and displays, tent, and cooler. We usually camp out to save money. But hosting a game isn't the only way you can help. We just love having people showing up at the games helping out at the tent, marching, helping with set up and breaking down.

But it isn't just the games. I love it when members are showing their pride in other activities such as dancing, playing in the band, or volunteering at varies games. There is a lot of work when it comes to putting on a game and volenteers are very important.

The Donnachaidhs of the South usually have at least one summer picnic, and campout, plus a Burns dinner.

Good luck on your kilt.


Posted by: cylassie 05-Aug-2007, 11:52 AM
I've been a member of Clan Henderson for 3 years now and love getting the newsletter and hope someday to represent the clan at gatherings.

Posted by: Robert Phoenix 05-Aug-2007, 01:36 PM
Sadly there is no Irish or Scottish clan activity in my town. Even the local Italian festival is kind of blah. So if anybody wants to get something started up here in Northern Wisconsin/Upper MIch please do. Duluth, MN Scottish Organiztion and Marquette, MI Ren fair are the closet we have for anything.

Posted by: Annabelle 05-Jan-2008, 10:37 PM
I'm a member of the "House of Gordon" Clan in several states, why we are titled differently I don't know but that is how our clan is always stated. Unfortunately I don't have alot of free time in the last year to be active. Hoping that will change in 2008.

Posted by: leenie 07-Jan-2008, 04:13 PM
What are the requirements for joining a clan?
Do you have to have proof that your ancestors were actually there? Like with the DAR organization? My great grandmother on my mothers side was a Harper. I've found out that Harper is a sept of Clan Buchanan. Now what?

Posted by: TandVh 07-Jan-2008, 08:18 PM
QUOTE (cylassie @ 05-Aug-2007, 12:52 PM)
I've been a member of Clan Henderson for 3 years now and love getting the newsletter and hope someday to represent the clan at gatherings.

Hi cylassie- we had a great time conveneing the Clan Henderson tent at the Fresno Highland games this year- here's a pic-

user posted image

I'm the big guy on the right in the Great Kilt, my wife next to me, daughter, son, daughter, daughter, and son-in-law.
I would certainly encourage you to become a convener for the clan!

Posted by: gwenlee 08-Jan-2008, 05:02 AM
leenie-Usually you have to have a name connection with a clan either through birth, marriage, or adoption. No other proof is usually required.

Posted by: skye10 24-Feb-2008, 02:32 PM
My husband and I are active members of Clan Donald. We are also members of Clan Uisdean that falls under Clan Donald. Clan Uisdean is much smaller and came from the Isle of Skye. I also have House of Gordon. My daughters can also add Clan Baird and are double Gordons through my 1st husband.
My daughter that is very active with me in Clan events wears the Isle of Skye tartan as she loves the colors.
I love getting the clan newsletters. I have volunteered at booths at the Southeast Florida Games as well as helping out at Grandfather Mountain. If you don't have games near you, save your money and go to Grandfather Mountain, NC. People come from all over the world and we camp for many nights. What a great time.
Our volunteers bring food items and have lunch at the tent. We always have lots left over.
This year our booth had a beautiful sword donated and sold raffle tickets for it at the booth. It really went over big and I know a profit was made. The same sword will go to all Florida Games and the winner at the end of the season. It will be mailed to the winner. It was easy to pick out the warrior types and sell tickets to them. Tickets were $1 or 6 for $5.00. We mostly sold $5 tickets.

2009 Reunion - We have already paid for our tickets through Clan Donald and will be marching in the parade with them and sit with their reserved area. Most of the clans have signed up already. It is on the site.

Posted by: Silvermane 08-May-2008, 11:35 AM
For those that are not sure (or cannot prove) Clan ties, check into New World Celts ( For Celts or those of Celtic mind.

Our Mission:

To promote awareness of the outstanding contributions and history of the Celtic Peoples in the formation and continuance of the New World.

To provide a forum for the exchange and promotion of Celtic cultural information between the Celtic Associations of the New World; To act as liaison for coordination of and assistance to these Organizations.

To provide a vehicle for charitable donations to promote Celtic culture in the New World in the areas of Cultural awareness, music, dance, athletics, re-enactments, and other areas deemed appropriate by the International Board of Directors.

To support all Celtic cultural non-political, non-religious, non-racist organizations that espouse the same high ideals as ours, regardless of whether they are Scot, Irish, Galician, Manx, Welsh, Breton, or Cornish.

To perpetuate Celtic Culture and history in the New World.

To provide a fraternal atmosphere for members.

Posted by: Fionna Machumhail 24-Jun-2008, 11:28 AM
I'll certainly check out those sites! thumbs_up.gif

As far as membership in a clan association for me? It is really hard...because my family tree goes back very strongly into several - Campbell, Stewart, McDonald, Douglas, Munro, Ross, de Brus, MacKenzie, Fraser, Graham, Comyn, Baliol, (WAY back there!), to name just a few (and some of these are on both my mom's and my dad's side!) The list goes on and on...and for hundreds of years longer that we've been in America (some since the 1600s.). I'd feel that if I decided to join one I'd be disrespecting the others, know what I mean? unsure.gif The blood of all of them pumps through my veins!

So, I'm a member of the Celtic Heritage Society, usually volunteer in some compacity for our annual Celtic Fest, when I can, and attend whether I'm volunteering or not. My teenaged son enjoys going to these things and it brings his own pride to the surface, knowing he IS of that ilk and not just a "wishiwas wannabe". tongue.gif wink.gif

Posted by: Amergin 22-Oct-2008, 04:48 PM
I'm a member of and I have been active since I joined in September. We never had a Clan Society before, so I was glad to see them at our recent Highland Games. We've been told that the Thompsons are a sept of Campbell or related to MacTavish, and a few of them are, but only a relative few highlanders who lived near Argyll. The vast majority of Thompsons in Scotland were lowlanders, living in the border areas, especially the Middle Marches of both Scotland and England. So now we're working to re-establish our name as one of the official clans with the Lord Lyon in Scotland.

Here's our tartan
user posted image

Posted by: tyoung34461usa 16-Jan-2009, 08:00 PM
QUOTE (gwenlee @ 20-Jun-2006, 05:06 PM)
As a lot of  you know I am very active with Clan Donnachaidh, and I am also active with Scottish Country Dancing.  I hold a position with both of these organization, of course membership is always on the agenda. 

So here is my question.  When you join a Clan what do you expect from your membership?  Are any of you active volunteers?  I'm interested in your input and  and I'd like to know what your Clan does for their member?

Hello gwenlee,
I don't have anything to say about my clan at the moment. I guess its pretty fair. I do have an image for you in regards to your own clan. Enjoy.

Thomas biggrin.gif
<a href="" target="_blank"><img src="" border="0" alt="Clan Donnachaidh, House of Sons of Duncan"></a>

Posted by: Cattee 29-Nov-2012, 06:31 PM
I am unaware of these things, but I would love to see if they have any. Can anyone send me more information on this please?

Posted by: Robert Phoenix 29-Nov-2012, 09:46 PM
What kind of info are you looking for. Clan or tartan? I noticed you had posted that you have Irish heritage. Most Irish tartans tend to go with the counties rather than a family name. However some Irish family names do have ties to scottish clans. Ex: My great grandmother was a Kelly. Irish surname (actually she was from Cornwall) but the Kelly's are considered a sept of Clan MacDonald. It can get a bit confusing at times but it tends to sort itself out. Each clan also have their own requirements for joining. There is also a German tartan if you like. I'm also part German so its on my wish list along with the Clan Italia tartan. Good luck finding your info!

Posted by: Cattee 30-Nov-2012, 12:15 AM
I don't know anything about clan membership or clans anything. I am more interested in what it is at the current moment. I am interested in the German and Irish at the moment.

Posted by: Robert Phoenix 30-Nov-2012, 11:52 PM
Clan is kind of another term for families. Each family or clan has its own motto, tartan (what we call plaid) pattern and various other symbols. Most people assocaite the word "clans" with Scotland. Ireland and other countries really don't have much of a clan system. Thus you will also find tartans of counties, states, and even countries. Did you know that Wal-Mart has its own tartan pattern? The whole family tartan thing really took off in 17th century. There are also families that may not have their own tartan but associate themselves or are in alliance with a family that does. These families are called Septs. For instance, a person with the last name of Kelly would be a Sept of the McDonald clan. Check to see if there is a clan with your last name or an ancestors last name and that would most likly be the clan you owuld belong to. The rest of membership formalities is decided on by each clan.
I may be wrong on a few things and there are others here who are more knowledgable than I who can help out. Here is a website that may may be of some help

Posted by: Cattee 01-Dec-2012, 12:02 AM
I will check it out, thanks.

Posted by: Patch 01-Dec-2012, 01:07 PM
It is well worth the effort. Just a study of the clans and their history is interesting reading containing everything found in a good novel today, from romance to murder. For the most part the clans were not a genteel lot.

Should you decide to search, I wish you good luck!



Posted by: macnicol 05-Jan-2014, 06:46 PM
My wife and I have been members of Clan MacNicol for over a dozen years. We've attended several local clan gatherings but the most memorable was when my oldest daughter and son accompanied me to Scotland in 2009 for the first International Gathering of the Clans at Holyrood in Edinburgh. We marched with our fellow clan members on the Royal Mile from Holyrood Palace to Edinburgh Castle with the pipe and drum bands playing all the way. I carried our clan flag wearing my kilt.

Others interested in joining or learning about Clan MacNicol should check out our web page:

I also am a member of the DNA research projects for MacNicol, Nicolson & Nicholson.

Powered by Invision Power Board (
© Invision Power Services (