The Clan MacQuarrie
- • Badge: Out of an antique crown, a bent arm in armour holding a dagger.
- • Motto: An t'Arm breac dearg. (The red tartarned army)
- • Gaelic Name: MacGuadhre
- • Tartan: MacQuarrie
- • Origin of Name: Gaelic son of Guaire (Proud or Noble).
- • Plant Badge: Pine
- • War Cry: An t'Arm breac dearg. (The red tartarned army)
- • Pipe Music: The Red Tartaned Army.
The name Macquarrie derives from the Gaelic personal name, Guaire, meaning "noble" or "proud". According to tradition, Guaire was the brother of Finagon from whom the Mackinnon chiefs descend. This small clan possessed the little island of Ulva lying opposite the west coast of Mull, a small portion of Mull itself and Staffa, famous for "Fingal's Cave", but despite their size they were an ancient clan recorded as members on the councils of the Lord of Isles. From Jerry Crary in his volume Ancestors and Descendants of Calvert Crary and his wife Eliza:
“The surname Crary, Crery, or McCrery is a corruption of the Scotch MacQuarrie. The race of MacQuarrie (clan Ghuairi) is of royal descent, traced to the second son of Gregor, son of Alpin, King of Scots, who fell in battle in 837. In 1314 the chief of the MacQuarrie Clan fought under Bruce at Bannockburn. The first of the name prominently recorded is John MacQuarrie of Ulva, who died in 1473, and later members were followers of the Lords of the Isles. When the Bishop of the Isles, Andrew Knox, went to Iona, in July, 1609, as commissioner for King James VI, among the chief men of the Isles who submitted themselves to him as the royal representative were MacQuarrie of Ulva, MacKinnon of that ilk, and ten others. The last of this line, Lachlan MacQuarrie, was compelled by debts to dispose of his property and become a soldier at the age of sixty-two.”
It is said that a former chief of the clan, Cormac Mor supported King Alexander II in his campaign in Argyll in 1249 and that Hector Macquarrie of Ulva fought with Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn. However the first authentic recording of a a Macquarrie of Ulva is in 1463, witnessing a charter of the Lord of the Isles. In 1609 the Macquarrie chief was one of the Highland chiefs kidnapped by James VI and compelled to sign the Statutes of Iona. After the forfeiture of the Lordship of the Isles the Macquarries followed the Macleans of Duart, who then dominated Mull. Due to this alliance the Macquarries suffered severly at Inverkeithing in 1651 when their chief, Allan and many of their clansmen died alongside the Macleans fighting for Charles II. Lachlan Macquarrie of Ulva the 16th and last chief, who entertained Dr. Johnson and Boswell in 1773 was forced to sell his lands in 1778. He died in Mull in 1818 at the age of 103, leaving the chiefship dormant. The most famous member of the clan was Lachlan Macquarrie cousin to the last chief who became Governor of New South Wales after Captain Bligh was dismissed. Under his guidance the colony prospered and the foundations of Sydney were begun.
The following information is from a CRARY who now resides in Arizona.
“There is something of a small legend about how the MacQuerrie left the islands. It's about four brothers that fled Mull sometime between 1670 and the late 1690s. The legend goes that one sailed for Limerick, married, and started a branch of Crary-Quarry-McCrary-McQuarry family that later settled in New York. Another split from the two remaining brothers and settled in one of the southern English American colonies. These became the McCrary, McCreary, McQuarry, and McQuerry.
From Genealogy of the Puritans New England Historical and Genealogy Register, Vol. LX, "Vital Records of New London, Groton, Stonington, and Norwich, Connecticut," "Stonington Church Records:”
The eldest MacQuarrie, Peter with a younger brother made their home in Connecticut. It was here that the Gaelic Mac/ Mhic was dropped and the clan name Quarrie was written as Crary , Creary and even Querry. The story goes that the name was slightly altered because it's actually quite difficult for English speakers to pronounce and to avoid imperial entanglements (in the form of noosed cordage) as English warrants had been issued for the brothers. From what I understand Peter is the great-grandfather of many of the Crary that remained in New England and all of those that later settled that portion of the Northwest Territory now called Michigan. From these three main groups later relocated to Wisconsin, California, and later still to Arizona.”
“Peter Crary came from Scotland and was the first Crary in Connecticut, arriving in New London (now Groton) in 1663. He was there when the patent of New London was sanctioned by the Governor and Company in 1701. He resided on the Groton side of the Mystic River. He married Christobel Gallup, daughter of John Gallup of New London, in 1677 and had seven children: Christobel, Peter, John, William, Robert, Margaret, and Ann. Peter Crary was a member of the First Congregational Church in Stonington, Connecticut where his children were baptized. He was a landowner in Quinnebaug County and an organizer of the town of Plainfield, Connecticut in 1699. He later returned to Groton where he spent his remaining years. Peter died in 1708.
It seems that each generation revisits the gaping hole that is our past and craves a place to belong. Cruel fate has in one form or another conspired to scatter our forebears from where they lived to the grand stretches of the Earth.
“Christopher Crary was the son of Robert and grandson of Peter Crary, senior. He settled in Voluntown, Connecticut and later moved to Clarendon, Vermont with his wife, son Ezra, and possibly others.
“Ezra Crary married and had children in Vermont: Nathan, Elias, Nathanial, Dolly, and another daughter.”