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Vanir
Thursday, October 27th, 2005, 12:58 PM
Can't keep a good clan down. The true High King of Scotland should always be a Mac Alpin. Says me ;)


Sir William aims to put McAlpine clan back on the map
IAN JOHNSTON

THEY are said to be as old as the hills and they were the first kings of Scotland, but centuries ago, the McAlpines fell on hard times and became a broken clan.

Now Sir William McAlpine, a director of the Sir Robert McAlpine construction empire, is bidding to have the clan restored to its rightful place among the great Scottish names and to be proclaimed its chief.

The McAlpines trace their descent back to King Kenneth MacAlpine, who is said to have been crowned the first king of all Scotland in 843 AD, while the saying "McAlpines, Hills and Streams" suggests they are as old as each other. But by 1300 the clan had lost the throne and reached such a low point that it had no land and no chief.

However, the United States-based Clan McAlpine Society has started the complex process of gaining official recognition of the McAlpines as a Scottish clan from the Lord Lyon.

The father of the society’s president, Kenneth McAlpine, a 46-year-old Californian, has become the first recorded member of the family to obtain an official coat of arms - the McAlpines were unimportant by the time heraldry was codified in Scotland in 1672 - the first step towards becoming a clan with a chief. Sir William, 68, the elder brother of the former Conservative Party treasurer Lord Alistair McAlpine, said it would be "wonderful" to become chief of the clan.

"I’m not sure why I’ve been selected but I suppose my family is the most well known of the McAlpines at the moment," he said.

About five per cent of the clan society’s members live in Scotland compared with 70 per cent in the US. Sir William, a baronet, said: "Kenneth McAlpine has collected some people from the States, but it would be very nice if McAlpines living in Scotland were encouraged to join.

"Kenneth organised a meeting of the clan at the Oban Games this year and it was a lovely surprise to see others wearing my tartan apart from members of my close family.

"I was born in the Dorchester Hotel in London but my father was born in Scotland and I consider myself a Scot - the Lord Lyon said if you own property in Scotland you are a Scot."

Mr McAlpine said Sir William, who is patron of the society, which was formed on January 1, 2000, would be the ideal choice for chief. "He is the genealogical head of the most prominent McAlpine family in Scotland, if not the UK and the world," he said. "Other reasons include his love for the clan and his strong family tradition among others."

He said McAlpines could gain official recognition by selecting a core group of "nobles" with coats of arms or land in Scotland, and choosing a commander who could then eventually become chief.

"No McAlpine had ever recorded arms or heraldry but my family has gone through the process. It was granted in the memory of my late grandfather. My father, John D, now holds the arms," Mr McAlpine said.

Becoming chief would mean Sir William could pass the title to his descendents, but the post of commander is not hereditary.

source (http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=1259752004)

Here: http://macalpineclan.com/sys-tmpl/door/