The following arms were granted to individuals of the Muirhead line:
|Mureheide of Lauchope ~ ca 1542|
According to George F. Black, in his major work, The Surnames Of Scotland ~ Their Origin, Meaning, And History (pp 617-618), in reference to the surname of Muirhead:
The first of the name in record is said to have been Sir William Muirhead of Lachope, end of fourteenth century. Probably the same person as William de Murehede who witnessed a charter of lands of Cranshaws in 1401 (Swinton, p. xvii).
In the book, A System Of Heraldry, Vol II, by Alexander Nisbet, it was noted that the earliest public record "concerning the ancient family is a deed granted by Archibald, Comte de Douglas Galovidiac et Bothwell, dicto soutiforo, Sieur Willielmo deMuirhead in Baronia de Bothwell in 1393, being a gentleman of mettle and spirit, he had the honor of knighthood conferred on him by King Robert III." This would agree with Black's information. Nisbet also noted that, "The family of Muirhead of Lauchope has always been reputed one of the most ancient families in all the shire of Lanark."
The name of Muirhead appeared as an entry in an heraldic register, for the first time, in 1542 in the Armorial of Lord Lyon Sir David Lindsay of the Mount. The individual’s given name was not noted. According to Nisbet in his A System Of Heraldry, Vol II, the man by the name of Muirhead residing in Lauchop in the 1540s might have been James.
In 1881 R.R. Stodart published the book, Scottish Arms, in which he provided details on the contents of certain 16th Century rolls of arms. One of those rolls, known as Forman’s Roll of ca 1562, included the arms of a man by the name of Mureheide of Lauchope. The arms were blazoned:
|Argent on a bend azure a mullet between two acorns or|
It is interesting to note, though, that arms appear in another document titled Workman’s Manuscript of ca 1565/6 for Murehead in which the colors of the field and ordinary are reversed. That arms is blazoned: Azure on a bend argent a mullet between two acorns vert seeded or. It is possible, though not easily provable, that this blazon actually does refer to the 1542 blazon, but perhaps the recorder simply transposed the tinctures.
It should be noted, also, that despite the fact that this blazon is the oldest known, no subsequent arms (apart from the 1565/6 blazon just noted above) utilized the charges of a mullet between two acorns or.
As will be noted in the arms of David Murehead of Lawchope of 1633, and the arms of James Muirhead of Bredisholme of 1676, both refer to the "surname of Mureheade of Lawchope" or the "family of Lauchop", which in essence would be the same thing. It is natural for one to assume that there was one ancestral family, the head of which was granted arms. It is also natural to assume that these arms for Mureheide of Lauchope, dating to 1542, would have been those of the ancestral surname / family, by virtue of them having been granted to its head or chief.
We may never know why, during the century that passed between the granting of these arms and those granted to David Murehead, the charge of mullet was changed to a third acorn. It may very well have been simply a means to difference the arms of David and James from their mutual armerigous ancestor (who would have been the Sieur Willielmo deMuirhead of the 1393 deed.)
|David Murehead of Lawchope ~ ca 1633|
The Visitation Of London for the year 1633 includes an entry for David Murehead of Lawchope. The entry would refer to the matriculation of arms granted to another individual prior to David in view of the fact that it stated the arms belonged "to the surname of Mureheade of Lawchope...of quohme [i.e. whom] is discendit Dauid Murehead Esq. by a second brother of the said family...".
The full entry reads as follows: This is the auntient Coate Armore belonging to the surname of Mureheade of Lawchope within the Shriffdome of Clydsdayll in the Kingdome of Scotland of quohme is discendit Dauid Murehead Esq. by a second brother of the said family quho beares Argent on a bend Dexster azur 3 Aceorns or as is set forth in the originall vnder the hand & seale of Sr James Balfour of Kynairds Lyone King of Armes of Scotland.
The arms of David Murehead of Lawchope ca 1633 were blazoned:
|Argent on a bend dexter azure three acorns or|
Although the above is an accurate illustration of the arms, per the blazon, the following illustration is the one which was included with the above information in the published version of the Visitation of 1633. It should be noted that this illustration does not accurately match the blazon. It should include the additional information of: with a crescent moon in chief proper if it were to be accurate. (As will be seen in the page devoted to the arms of James Murehead of Lawchope, this illustration might have been incorrectly applied to the arms of David in the published Visitation of 1633, and rather should be applied to James.)
It should be noted that the arms of Mureheide of Lauchope ca 1542 did not consist of three acorns but rather a mullet (i.e. a five pointed star) between two acorns. This blazon was the first to be noted with the charges of three acorns. It may or may not have been an intentional alteration of the more ancient arms despite the fact that the description refers to the "auntient Coate Armore belonging to the surname of Mureheade of Lawchope". It may have been a means to difference this blazon from that of the ancestor.
The genealogy of the armiger, David Murehead, was given in the Visitation as follows:
|James Muirhead of Bredisholme, Descended of Muirhead of Lauchop ~ 1676|
The College of Arms in London maintains a manuscript copy of the Lyon Register, in which there appears an entry for James Muirhead of Bredisholme.
James Muirhead of Bredisholme was described as a second son of the family of Lauchop. The arms of James were blazoned:
|Argent on a bend azure three acorns or with a crescent for difference|
The first thing that one notices about the blazon for the arms of James Muirhead of Bredisholme is that it perfectly describes the arms illustrated in the Visitation of 1633:
Either the illustration was incorrectly applied to David Murehead of Lawchope in the Visitation of 1633 when it was published, or it was re-matriculated by James Muirhead of Bredisholme in 1676. I would think the former is the actual; it was pointed out above, in regard to the description devoted to the arms of David Murehead of Lawchope, that the illustrated arms did not match the blazon.
The crest of James Muirhead of Bredisholme was blazoned: Two hands supporting a sword erected in pale proper
The motto of James Muirhead of Bredisholme read: Auxilio Deo
|William Morehead of Herbertshire, descended from the ancient family of Morehead of Lachop in the county of Lanark ~ 6 August 1788|
The College of Arms in London maintains a manuscript copy of the Lyon Register, in which there appears an entry for a matriculation of arms for William Morehead of Herbertshire dated 06 August 1788.
William Morehead of Herbertshire was described as being descended from the ancient family of Morehead of Lachop in the county of Lanark. The arms of William were blazoned:
|Argent on a bend azure three acorns or in chief a mans heart proper within a fetterlock sable|
Bolton's American Armory, published by the Baltimore Heraldic Book Company in 1964 (p. 117), contained an illustration which would be accurate for the blazon of William Morehead of Herbertshire:
The blazon was given as: Argent on a bend azure 3 acorns or, in chief a man’s heart proper within a fetterlock sable, the whole surrounded with an oak wreath proper acorned or, and was noted as "Arms on an old painting in possession of the North Car(olina) branch of the family. Crozier’s Va. Heral. 1908, p. 101".
Musgrave’s Obituary (printed in London 1900 from a variety of original sources) includes three entries for men named William Morehead. The one died on 18 February 1692. The next one died on 12 June 1766. The third man named William Morehead was listed as having died on 19 June 1793. It is therefore possible that the William Morehead of Herbertshire, to whom these arms were matriculated in 1788 was the William Morehead who died in 1793.
An illustration of a coat of arms has been found which has the name William Morehead, Esq. below it and the shield surrounded by a oak branch with acorns wreath. The blazon is not the same as that of William Morehead of Herbertshire as noted in the Lyon Register; this blazon consists of: Argent on a bend azure three acorns of the first. A mullet sable in chief for difference. Therefore, it is not known for certain, for whom these arms were created, as William is a fairly common name in the family.
The crest of William Morehead of Herbertshire was blazoned: Two hands grasping a two handed sword proper
The motto of William Morehead of Herbertshire read: Auxilio Deo
|Arms of Muirhead of Bredisholme, Re~Matriculated ~ 1842|
In the Court of the Lord Lyon, there exists a record of the re-matriculation of the Muirhead arms in 1842. Unfortunately, the armiger claiming this matriculation was not named.
At this time the arms were blazoned:
|Quarterly 1st & 4th, Argent on a bend azure three acorns Or a crescent in chief of the second; 2nd Azure three mullets in fess argent in base as many besants in fess and in chief an acorn of the second; 3rd Azure a chevron between two mullets in chief Or and a unicorn rampant in base argent|
|James Patrick Muirhead ~ 1843|
James Patrick Muirhead was born on 25 July 1813. He was the son of Lockhart Muirhead and Anne Campbell; the grandson of the Reverend Patrick Muirhead and Elizabeth, daughter of the Reverend John Muirhead and Janet Bogle.
James Patrick Muirhead was educated at Glasgow University and Balliol College, Oxford, M.A.
He married, on 27 January 1844, Katherine Elizabeth, daughter of Mathew Robinson Boulton of Tew Park and Haseley. They bore four children: Lionel Boulton Campbell Lockhart, Francis Montagu, Herbert Hugh, Bertram Arthur, Beatrix Marion and Eleanor Anne.
James Patrick Muirhead died on 15 October 1898.
A grandson of James Patrick Muirhead, Anthony John Muirhead, was the subject of a biography that appears on pages 1644 and 1645 of Burke's Genealogical And Heraldic History Of The Landed Gentry, published in 1959. Anthony John was the son of James Patrick's son, Lionel Boulton Campbell Lockhart Muirhead and his wife, Grace Mary, daughter of John Henry Ashhurst, of Waterstock, Oxford. The biography of Anthony John Muirhead was accompanied by the arms of Muirhead Of Haseley Court. There is no record of Anthony John Muirhead having acquired his own matriculation of the arms, and therefore it might be concluded that the arms of his grandfather were included in the biography simply for the interest of it.
The arms of James Patrick Muirhead were blazoned:
|Argent, on a bend azure, between two galleys with sails furled up and oars in action sable, flags and pennons flying barry of the third and or, three acorns of the last|
The crest of James Patrick Muirhead was balazoned: Two hands grasping a two handed sword.
The motto of James Patrick Muirhead read: Auxilio Dei.
|Major Murray Muirhead~Murray ~ 1916|
Murray Muirhead-Murray, Esq., D.S.O., B.A. (Cantab.) was born Murray Muirhead in 1878. He married, in 1909, Violet Edith, daughter of Albert Carter Varasour of Weston Manor, Otley, Yorkshire. They gave birth to two daughters, Masha Violet and Ailsa Cheristine Anne.
Murray Muirhead-Murray was the eldest son of John Muirhead of Riverdale House, Richmond, Surrey and Charlotte Jane, daughter of Peter Murray of Locherbie, N.B. John Muirhead was born in the year 1850 and died in 1912. His marriage to Charlotte Jane took place in the 1870s.
Murray Muirhead-Murray served as a Lieutenant Colonel, R.A., and received the Chevron, Legion of Honour (France).
In 1923 by Deed Poll, he assumed the additional surname of Murray, his mother’s maiden surname.
The arms of Murray Muirhead~Murray were blazoned:
|Argent on a bend, between two mullets in chief and one in base Azure three acorns Or|
The crest of Murray Muirhead~Murray was blazoned: On a wreath of his liveries, two hands couped, holding a sword erect in pale proper.
The motto of Murray Muirhead~Murray read: Auxilio Dei.
|Sir John Spencer Muirhead, descended of Glasgow Muirheads ~ 1957|
John Spencer Muirhead was granted a coat of arms in 1957. His brother, James Muirhead of Boath matriculated arms that same year. His son matriculated arms during the year 1970.
The arms of Sir John Spencer Muirhead were blazoned:
|Argent, on a bend cottised Azure, between two lymphads of the second under sail Or, four acorns slipped of the third, a bordure chequy of the second and first|
Sir John Spencer Muirhead’s arms, according to this blazon, would have been similar to those of James Patrick Muirhead of 1843 with the addition of a fourth acorn on the bend (which now had become cottised, i.e. paralleled by smaller bends), and the addition of a checkered border surrounding the entire shield.
The motto of Sir John Spencer Muirhead read: Auxilio Dei.
|Muirhead of Boath ~ Brigadier James Muirhead, descended of Glasgow Muirheads ~ 1957|
Brigadier James Muirhead matriculated arms in the year 1957, along with his brother, Sir John Spencer Muirhead.
The arms of Brigadier James Muirhead were blazoned:
|Argent, on a bend cottised Azure, between two lymphads of the second under sail Or, four acorns slipped of the third, a bordure chequy of the second and first with a crescent in dexter chief of the third|
The arms of James would have been similar to those of his brother, John with the addition of a crescent shape in the upper left (i.e. dexter chief) corner of the shield.
There was no crest nor a motto listed for Brigadier James Muirhead’s arms.
|Major Richard Lawrence Maxwell Muirhead, son of Sir John Spencer Muirhead ~ 1970|
Major Richard Lawrence Maxwell Muirhead, the son of Sir John Spencer Muirhead, matriculated arms in the year 1970.
The arms of Major Richard Lawrence Maxwell Muirhead were blazoned:
|Argent, on a bend cottised Azure between two lymphads of the second under sail Or, four acorns slipped of the third, a bordure invected chequy of the second and first|
As can be seen from the similarity of this blazon to that of his father, Sir John Spencer Muirhead’s, the only difference between the two was the addition of an invected border for the ‘bordure chequy’. The word ‘invected’ means that it is scalloped, with the round curves pointed outward, away from the element which it is intended to modify.
|James Grosset Muirhead ~ 1737|
James Grosset was a merchant of Lisbon in the year 1737. He was a son of Archibald and Euphemia (Muirhead) Grosset.
Walter Grosset provides an account of James Grosset Muirhead in the book, 'An Account of the Family of the Muirheads of Lachop." Around the year 1707, Walter's mother, Euphemia Muirhead married Archibald Grosset, of Logie. Euphemia Muirhead was known by the name of Lady Logie; Logie was a large estate in the village of Crossford, near Dunfermline in Fife. She was the eldest of six children born to James Muirhead and Helen Stewart, of Bredisholm. The four Muirhead sons failed to produce any heirs, and therefore the Muirhead line of descent then followed the female line, being that of Lady Logie's. One of Archibald and Euphemia's sons, James Grosset, made his living as a merchant prince of Lisbon, Portugal. In the year 1754, James purchased the Bredisholm estate from his uncle, John Muirhead of Bredisholm [1676-1762]. James then assumed the Muirhead surname and its coat of arms, for himself 'and his posterity'.
The arms of James Grosset Muirhead were blazoned:
|Quarterly 1st and 4th, as the last; 2nd azure three stars in fess argent and as many bezants in fess or, below the middle of the shield, in chief an acorn of the second, for Grossett; 3rd, azure a chevron between two mullets in chief or, and a unicorn rampant in base argent, for Du Vernet|
The crest of James Grosset Muirhead was blazoned: A demi unicorn rampant.
The motto of James Grosset Muirhead read: Pro patria auxilio Dei.
The following illustration appeared on page 714 of The General Armory under the name of James Grosset. It should be noted, though, that it is not an accurate representation of the blazon of James Grosset Muirhead’s arms.