Gillimichaell M'Ewin M'Illemicbaell of Appin.

As one person wrote on an online genealogical forum, “I am researching
the name MacMichael/McMichael and have now discovered that the
Carmichael's of Galloway often changed their name to
MacMichael/McMichael. The Argyllshire MacMichael's often changed their
name to Carmichael.”  There are several reasons that the original name out
of the Scottish Highlands, that is of Gillimichaell M'Ewin M'Illemicbaell , and
sometimes Mac Giolla Mhicheil, also Gaelic in shorter form.  {If we knew
Gaelic, I think we could see how both MacMichael and Carmichael and
even Erwin and Mc Erwin came out of this long name!  It is not so strange
that they got McMichael or McMichael out of that, but rather how they got
Carmichael out of it!  Of course it could be that “Gilli” easily translates into
“Car”.}  One thing as they became somewhat integrated into the society,
language and culture of Great Britain, the options to anglicize into the
language of the Brits were numerous, so also in the early days of Colonial
history more options were available in order to converse with fellow
colonists.  Sometimes like a McMichael in Dublin Ireland told me, there
was finagling with the name, like between MacMichael and McMichael, etc,
in order to “fake out the Brits”.  After all, it was their legitimate option in
going from the Gaelic to the twin languages of Great Britain and America,
and all of us are aware of similar changes made in family names of
immigrants to America.  But in their family trees of early Scotland, they had
many choices from which to chose for family names, as shortly you will
see about one family of Annat in Appin of Argyle.

Frank Adam and Sir Thomas Innes in the book “The Clans, Septs, and
Regiments of the Scottish Highlands” present a paragraph on the clan
stewart of Appin septs as follows: (1) Carmichael, MacMichael.-The
Carmichaels  of  Lismore  and Appin  are  said  to  be  descended  from  
MacMichaels,  followers of the Earls of Galloway (Stewarts), who left
Galloway and became dependents of the Appin Stewarts,  who were
kinsmen of the Stewarts of Galloway.  In  the  list  of killed  and  wounded  
of the  followers of the  Stewarts  of Appin  at  the  Battle   of  Culloden  
the  Carmichaels  rank  third,   the first  two  places  being  taken   by  the  
MacColls and  the  MacLarens respectively .  As early as 1683 as the Brits
and Catholics and Church of England sought to kill out the Presbyterian
Covenanters, one James Stewart of Galloway was ambushed and killed
along with Robert Stewart, John Grier, and Robert Ferguson at the water
of Dee in Galloway, December 1683.  {This same James MacMichael of
Galloway, called Black MacMichael in a classical book that will be
discussed later, later became known as Long Rifle MacMichael when he
saved some of the secret Presbyterian worshipers of Galloway at a camp
meeting.}  However what this little piece of recorded history does for us is
to tie together Galloway, to the south of Appin, along the coast and a
boggy country not in the Highlands with Appin, the Earl of Galloway was a
Stewart, the same Stewarts, by the way not the same as the royal Stewarts
but cousins, and the clan of Appin--just out of Oban and made famous by
Robert Louis Stevenson in “Kidnapped”, which clan was the Stewart of
Appin clan mentioned above by Adam and Sir Thomas Innes.  
And what we will find with historical research, etc, that McMichaels,
MacMichaels, Carmichaels, and several other renditions of the name early
(during and before 1683) populated the west costal regions of Galloway
and Appin in Argyle as well as the islands off the coast like Lismore, the
Isle of Islay, and many others.

In a book printed in 1886, before it became popular to make money off
scottish names and genealogy, by the name of “Scottish Antiquary” and
written by a Reverend Cornelius Hallen, in his research into interesting
tidbits of history from the Highlands, he ran across one about the
Carmichaels in Appin. Below what the authors of Antiquary are discussing
is from an earlier book, and they develope the discussion under the head
of “An Old Petty Highland

Lairdship and Its Owners”.   What is obvious in most of these names is the
angel Michael, from which the names for MacMichael, especially in the
original and expanded versions, is translated as “servant of the angel
Michael.”  Here is how this tidbit of history goes:  “In 1595 Duncan Stewart
of Appin granted in heritage to Gillimichaell M'Ewin V'Illemichaell in Annat
the domus bruerii {you recognize this as a domain of a brewery}  of Annat
in Appin in the lordship of Lome, with the croft annexed to it, with pasture
for six great cows and their followers, three cows of one year and of two
years and one horse and one mare for the labours of the said croft and the
necessity (necessane) of the said house, and with all their privileges,
commodities, and pertinents, as Gillimichaell and his predecessors bruerii
diae domus possessed them in times past-the house and croft being
bounded by “the rivulet of Annat on the west, the pule called the Lyn
Rweagh on the south, the rivulet of Achnagon on the east, and the ridge
(/ze edge munlis) between the rivulets of Achnagon and Annat on the

For nearly 200 hundred years the descendants of the above Gillimichaell
M'Ewin M'Illemicbaell owned this small estate, and for some reason took
up from this Gaelic name salad blow the name Carmichael for short.  Here
we must briefly acknowledge some of the benefits of oral history on the
genealogical online forums:  (1) one contributor related that the
Carmichaels of Galloway were in the habit of taking up the name of
McMichael or MacMichael, like the aforementioned Long Rifle James
MacMichael, and that the McMichaels of Appin had the habit of taking up
the name of Carmichael; and (2) another contributor stated that right now it
is more politically correct to be called a Carmichael than a McMichael,
which really indicates that from the original name either are feasible.
In later Scottish Tidbits many things remain yet to be explained:  the
Presbyterian Covenanters and history along with some of wars and
atrocities in the Highlands, McMichaels, MacMichaels and Carmichaels on
marriage and birth legal documents of record in Argyle, both in the 1600’s
and 1700’ and some today, some history of the thousands of Highlanders
and Covenanters banished to the colonies to work on plantations, and so
on and on.  {By the way, you will find a link on this the main web page of
the Scottish Corner, that
will take you to a listing of much of the historical research, free and
available to you primarily in PDF.  Also by the way, any time you wish to
dialog on these subjects or ask questions, you have 3 options:  (1) you can
comment on google plus, (2) you can email to, or (3)
you can use the contact form for web users on many of the pages of www. .  Happy and fruitful research!}

NOTE:  As always only the PDF copy of this document has the original
footnotes as written in Adobe FrameMaker, and as usual is available
for free and immediate