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Origin of Alcorn Name, Version 1

Transcription of a letter and other documents written by Dr. A. J. Alcorn, Chicago, Il.

(Transcription from a typewritten document in the possession of Georgia Alcorn)

ALCORN* ALLCORN                                                                                                  Nov. 14, 1928

Copy of letter of Doctor A. J. Alcorn, Physician and Surgeon, 4257 Fullerton Ave., Chicago, Illinois.

The following statement is the origin of the Alcorn Family, which of course includes those of the U.S.

The incident of the change of name being as follows:

James the 5th of Scotland, the James FitzJames of the Lady of the Lake while hunting in Scotland with his courtiers, came unexpectedly to a Robertson’s residence.  This man was so abundantly rich he turned the Kings horses into his grainaries (sic) and entertained the King and gentlemen.  The King at once conferred on him the name Allcorne, or as it was spelled then, “Allchorne” (note the arms, has it spelled Alchorne).

The records from which I am Quoting contains impressions of the Crest, a stag surmounting a sheaf of wheat.  Also a copy of Robertson’s Coat of Arms which is very elaborate (Note: the crest had a heart, or a crest surmounted by a crown, and on each side of the heart are wings) (but my mother had this same history of the family, so it is the same).  The Robertson’s are numerous and many branch clan, the original family name was “DeAtholia” (celtic, Earl of Athol.)

One of the race married Beatrice, daughter of Malcolm the II.  Henry was the last Celtic Earl, his son Duncan the Fat, had four sons.  Robert DeAtholia was founder of the family of Robertsons, being of the clan “Donachie”, that is Duncan.  The second son Duncan founded the family of Duncanson, etc. etc.

The Robertsons were staunch Jacobites, being intermarried with the Stewarts.  The chieftainship still remains, and is called Strowan (sic) or Robertson of Strowan.  One of the chieftains resided at Mount Alexander in Perthshire and his death is also a matter of record.  One of the sons of Duncan was the Lord Braduarden of Sir Walter Scott.  The Alcorn plant is heather and fern and their “Plaid” is brown, red, green and purple.

John Alcorn the first who came to Ireland from Scotland died Feb 16, 1710 age 100 years.  This John had two brothers, Robert and James.  In (date left out) James the 5th of Scotland and 1st of England, gave large tracts of land to the brothers John, Robert and James.  John settled in Co. Donegal, Robert in Tyrone, and James in Derry.  The inscription whom which we learn of the death of John mentioned above is still in existence and is on an old tombstone now standing in a cemetery in Ireland. 

It seems these brothers were the progenitors of the Alcorns in the USA.  The above information was gathered from Mr. William F. Alcorn of New Haven, Conn., Attorney at Law. 

In Burkes Landed Gentry you will find under the name of Alchorrrne or similar spelling a record of an award of lands to those remaining loyal to the King during the reign of Cromwell, from time to time, letters were dropped from the name.  My father and his brothers and sisters changing from Allcorn to present spelling which seems to be universally adopted.  The original name came from Scotland to North of Ireland presumably at time of or shortly before Cromwell. 

Three brothers came from Ireland to this country two hundred years ago.  They were Presbyterians and resided in that settlement in Pennsylvania.  My father’s father being sworn in Clarian Co., and also my father moving about 100 years ago to Armstrong Co. and settling near Payton where my father’s younger brother now resides 89 or 90 years of age.  Of course the early account is tradition, as far as I know.  I never heard of any being in War before my father’s time.

                                                                                                         Signed Dr. Alcorn


Further information gotten from the American Heraldries.

Robin Alcorn married Mary Louise Hemshire, she was killed by dogs in forest, born 1649, at Craig –y-nois.  There was a Baron Renfrew William George Alcorn who died 1688.  Three sons came to America 1688, George, William and John from Plymouth England, on the “Two Brothers” boat.  Capt. Barnegate Durham said they had 20,000 lbs., and Capt. Durham was their guardian, his bond at Harrisburg, Penn. John 1719

A grant on the Susquehanna River for 70,900 lbs. at Philadelphia, son of James of William.  He was a Revolutionary soldier.  Williamsburg Historical Society has Afidavid (sic) of Zeraesgate Durham to be appointed guardian of three Alcorn boys, William, George, and John, whose father died at sea.

A cousin copied this for me from some notes she had, but it doesn’t make much good sense, but I gather there really were three brothers as Rose Alcorn said.

Cordially, Sally Phillips Rector Haines


James Alcorn b. 1770 (we think VA) d. 1851 Clay Co. Mo.

Married 1st. Elizabeth Breckenridge, 2nd Elizabeth Smiley

James Madison Allcorn b. 1810 married Amanda Saunders

Andrew Robertson Allcorn born Aug 1, ? Old Richfield, Missouri City, Mo.

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