Buchanan Clan Origin: The Buchanan Clan is said to come from a grant given by King Malcolm II to Anselan O Kyan, who was thought to be an Irish prince. Anselan O Kyan came to the city of Argyll after fleeing from the Danes in 1016. King Malcolm II saw his actions to be noble, and therefore issued the lands of Buchanan to Anselan. It has also been said that Sir Absalon of Buchanan was granted the land by Earl of Lennox.

Clan Location: East side of Loch Lomond Killearn, Drymen, Balmaha and Rowardennan)

Clan Motto: Hence the brighter honour  (Clarior hinc honos)

The name Buchanan comes from the Gaelic term “Buth Chanain” which means House of the Canon. These Buchanan’s may have connections with the Celtic Church. Throughout seven centuries the Buchanan’s kept their land. It wasn’t until 1682 that their estate had to be sold in order to pay back debt.

This came at the death of John, 22nd laird of Buchanan. Members of this clan included the Buchanan’s of Auchmar, Spittal, Arnprior, Drumikill, Carbeth, and Leny; the Leny line took the title of chief.

The Buchanan Family Crest

Clan Buchanan Tartan

Buchanan Military History: The Buchanan’s are quite famous for their effort put forth toward Scotland’s Independence and the support for Robert the Bruce. The Buchanan’s also made up a major part of the 7000 men sent to France to the King after the battle of Agincourt. One legend says that Sir Alexander Buchanan killed the Duke of Clarence at Battle of Beauge. Another story insists the Earl of Buchan killed the Duke. Theory has it that the crest of the family who killed the Duke possesses the ducal cap on the clan coat of arms. The Buchanan clan crest does posses the cap that the killer captured from the Duke at his death. Buchanan and Leny were defeated at Flodden in 1513 but continued to battle at Pinky and Langside.

Famous Buchanans

George Buchanan: Born in Killearn around 1506, earned a name for himself through Latin poetry and History. He escaped to Paris after a run in with the Cardinal Beaton of France. He later became a tutor to Mary Queen of Scots and her son James VI. George Buchanan was also know as Keeper of the Privy Seal, a protestant reformer, and Moderator of the General Assembly. A monument now stands to George Buchanan in the village of Killearn.

Andrew Buchanan: During the time of the Jacobite Uprising of 1745, Andrew Buchanan, Lord Provost of Glasgow, was known for denying any assistance to the “Young Pretender” Bonny Prince Charlie. One of the main streets in Glasgow is now named after Andrew Buchanan.

James Buchanan: The 15th President of the United States of America (1857 to 1861) prior to the American Civil War. He was not considered a popular President and was the only President to come from Pennsylvania & also not to marry. His ancestors are thought to be Ulster Scots.

Are you a Buchanan?

If your surname is listed below you can claim to be a Buchanan.