Historical researchers, using some of the oldest
manuscripts, including Clan genealogies, the Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, the Ragman
Rolls, the Inquisitio Rolls, the Black Book of Exchequer, Parish cartularies, baptismal
records, tax records, and many other manuscripts, found the name Pattillo in
Fifeshire where they had been seated from very early times, and are Conjecturally
descended from the MacLillichs who claim descendancy from Angus, grandson of Somerled,
Lord of the Isles, the original name being Pattilloch or Pattillock.
Spelling variations of the name causes much confusion in research. These
variations occurred for a variety of reasons. From time to time the surname was spelled
Patilloch, Pattilloch, Patillock, Pattillock, Patillo, Pattillo, Patullo, Pattullo,
Petillo, Petillow, Pettillo, Petullow, Petilloch, Pettilloch, Petillock, Pettillock,
Pitillo, Pittillo, Pitillow, Pittillow, Pitullow, Pitilloch, Pittilloch, Pitillock or
Pittillock. These variations occurred sometimes between father and son. It was not
uncommon for a clansman to be born with one spelling, married with another and still
another be on his tombstone. Sometimes the different spelling was due to clan or religeous
loyalty to a branch or cheiftan.
The surname Pattillo emerged as a Scottish Clan or family in
their territory at Fifeshire. In 1305, William Patilloch received a grant of lands from
King Robert the Bruce called Gibliston, and at the same time Adam Patilloch held the lands
at Freuchie in Fifeshire. These two branches of the clan flourished and most notable the
name of Robert Pitilloch of Dundee, recruted his fellow Scots in 1423 for service in
France. In 1452 he became a French citizen and was made "Lord of Sauveterre" for
his gallant contribution to the French army. He was known as "the little king of
Gascoigne". He became the Scottish Ambassador to the Courts of France and Spain.
Meanwhile the name in Scotland gradually became Petillo, dropping the last consanants.
The clan acquired lands at Kynnochtry in 1585. Notable
amongst the Clan from early times was Robert Pitiloch of Dundee, Scotland. However,
typical of the ancient conflict between highlanders and Edinburgh, many ancient highland
clans have still not officially been recognized as Clans by Lord Lyon of Scotland.
In North America, the Highlanders settled in Virginia, the
Carolinas, Nova Scotia and the Ottawa Valley of Canada. Some of the first imigrants were
Henry and George Alexander Pattillo. Henry Pattillo became an emminant Presbyterian
Minister of Hanover, Virginia and educator in North Carolina. Most of George's descendants
migrated from Virginia to Georgia and then westward to the Pacific shore and beyond to
Australia. Many of George's descendants were Methodist Ministers. Andrew and Gerard
Patullo arrived in Philadelphia in 1824 and then a Thomas Patillo settled in Philadelphia
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