The surname ‘Lamont’ was originally found in Argyll, which was known as the ancient Kingdom of Dál Riata. This is now part of the region of Argyll and Bute, in western Scotland.
The name ‘Lamont’ has Scottish and medieval roots, and was acquired from the pre-7th century Old Norse given name “Logmathr,” which means ‘law’ (log) and ‘man’ (mathr). The name was first listed in Scotland in 1116 as Ladmunn, and in England in 1242 as Laghman.
Around the year 500, the Gaelic kingdom of Dal Riata emigrated to southwest Scotland. An Irish prince from the O’Neill dynasty decided to settle in Argyll, where he got married and had three sons. Each of his sons founded their own clan, one of which was Clan Lamont.
John Lamont is one of the first known records of the Lamont family. During the late 1200s, he was the Chief of Clan Lamont. By this point the clan had developed branches in Perth, Argyll and the clan seat at Cowal. It was also establishing its castles at Toward and Ascog.
Until the 13th century, the Lamont Clan was known as MacKerracher. In 1235, this was changed to MacLamont, which in turn became Lamont.
Over the years, the Lamont Clan became increasingly significant, and ruled over the Cowal peninsula for a number of centuries. Around 1753, they built Knockdow House, a gorgeous Georgian property that belonged to the Laird of Knockdow in power at the time.
The property is still standing today and has a great deal of history. It has a notable white stone finish, traditional 18th century slate roof, an arched entryway and towards the far left of the property, an imposing tower.
Inside, the three-floored house features six main reception rooms, three additional reception rooms, a large drawing room, 12 bedrooms and a former Great Hall. There are also a number of Caribbean influences throughout the property, including exotic woods such as mahogany and sandalwood.
Lamont Settlers across the Globe
Some of the first overseas settlers of the Lamont family are John Lamont, Alice Lamont and Janet Lamont, who were all 18th century US settlers.
Today, the name Lamont can be found not just in Scotland but also in England, Northern Ireland, Belgium, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Jamaica. Recent notable Lamonts include George Lamont, a New Zealand footballer, and George D. Lamont, a former New York lawyer and political leader. This is a family of immense history, legacy and heritage.