Family Research – English, Scottish and Irish Genealogy


Armstrong Clan

The Armstrong clan were famous Border Rievers mentioned in the Border Ballads. This is where we start in our search for the Scottish Clans.

The Armstrong Clan is famous or perhaps I should say infamous in Scottish History for Border Reiving between Scotland and England which they did with the Clans Nixon, Elliots and Corsers. The Clan originated in Cumbria in the early 14th century and moved north. In the main if they weren’t stealing cattle then they were into blackmail or protection rackets. However one of the most famous Armstrong leaders, Johnie Armstrong, was hanged on the orders of James V and from time to Time mass hangings and drowning’s of Armstrong’s took place in the borders.

The Border Tales and Ballads have romanticised the Armstrong’s under a lot of romance and Heroic deeds which don’t stand up to much scrutiny. However by the time Scotland and England became united especially after 1707 this criminal way of life came to an end and for the ones that wouldn’t or couldn’t change then they were transported to the American Colonies.

Notable Armstrong’s include Neil Armstrong the first man to stand on the surface of the Moon in 1969. Archie Armstrong Court Jester to James IV, Edwin Armstrong (b 1890 d1964) US inventor of modern Radio and electronic circuitry, Helen Armstrong better known as Dame Nellie Melba singer, Henry Armstrong who held three word championships simultaneously, Henry Edward Armstrong Organic Chemist, John Armstrong (b1758 d1843) American Soldier, diplomat and politician, Louis Armstrong (satchmo) the leading trumpeter of the twentieth century

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