Extract from Gordon Gilmore's excellent page: http://www.family.ntsnet.co.uk/gilmhist.htm ...
The Gilmore ClanGilmores or Gilmours, according to the Clan maps sold in most tourist shops in Scotland, are a section of the Clan Morrison, a minor clan whose native area is the northern end of the Hebridean isle of Lewis.
The Gilmore Family History
(as suggested by the Historical Research Center)Gilmore is most often, even in England, an anglicised form of the Scots gaelic name Gille Moire or the Irish names Mac Giolla Mhuire and Mac Giolla Mhir. The first two mean 'son of the devotee of Mary (Our Lady)', while the last means 'son of the servant of Mear', from the Irish word 'Mear', meaning 'lively'. In the Middle Ages it was common practice for people to be given names relating to a particular saint and Mary, being the Mother of God, is considered first among the saints. These names were usually prefixed by Gille, meaing 'servant/devotee' as a mark of respect.
Early instances of the surname date back to the twelfth century when, between 1133 and 1156, one Gilmour, son of Gilander, founded the chapelry of Treverman in the parish of Walton in Cumberland. The chapel was constructed of wattelwork and on its completion Gilmour appointed his kinsman Gillemor to the chaplaincy (Victorian History of Cumberland).
Gilmore, as a purely English name, comes from the Gillamour, which is the name of a location in the North Riding of Yorkshire. This place name, documented in 1086 as Gedlingesmore, comes from the Olde English name Gythla or Getla to which is added the terms 'ingas, meaning 'people or followers of...', and 'mor' meaning 'moorland'. Thus, the place name 'Gillamoor' means 'moorland belonging to the followers of Gythla or Getla'.
English references to the surname Gilmore include a record of the christening of Alexander Gilmore, son of Joseph Gilmore, in St. Mary's Church, Marlborough, Wiltshire, on November 8th, 1682. Alexander Gilmore, son of William and Elizabeth Gilmore, was christened in a church in Oswestry, Shropshire, on November 13th, 1767, and John Gilmore married Sarah Parkhurst in Holy Trinity Church, Gosport, Hampshire on July 4th 1818.
Blazon of Arms:
Argent on a chevron between three trefoils slipped vert as man hunting (?) horns
stringed of the first.
Thanks to Lindsay and Mike for this information.
JG: Some sites show this as the Gilmore Family crest...