The name Carruthers is from the lands of Carruthers in Middlebie parish in Dumfrisshire. To the ancient Briton fort called Caer Rydderch or Rythyr.
There is also an old legend that the Carruthers family may be descendants of ColeHen, King of Cumbria (or Old King Cole as he became known) because one of his sons, Rhideris, built a caer, or castle, near Ecclefechan.
Locally, the name was pronounced “Cridders”.
In the 13th century the Carruthers were stewards of Annandale under the Bruces. Historically, the principal strongholds of the Clan were Mouswald, Holmains, Dormont, Little Dalton and Rammerscales and a few others.
The first recording of the name stated in ‘Records of Carruthers’ by the Rev A. S. Carruthers and R.C Reid was William de Karruthers who made a donation to the Abbey of Newbattle in the reign of Alexander II of Scotland (1215-1245).
Another recording of the name was de Karruthers, with Simon de Karruthers, a churchman of the parish of Middlebie, which is dated circa 1272 – 1307.
Sir Nigel de Karrutheris was a cleric who obtained the rectory of Ruthwell in 1330 is mentioned again in 1337 and 1351 as Nigel de Carrothorys, canon of Glasgow.
In 1344 Sir Nigel de Carother is recorded as chancellor of Robert Steward of Scotland.
A charter was granted at Moysfald in 1361 in favour of John de Carotheris, Simon de Carrutheris witnessed a deed in 1394, and John of Carrutheris was among the ‘borowis’ for the Earl of Douglas’s bounds of the West March in 1398.
John Carruthers was keeper of Lochmaben Castle (below) in 1446 and William de Carrutheris was presbyter of Glasgow in 1460.
The Carruthers have owned the estate of Dormont since 1452 when it was granted to the family by Robert the Bruce.
The Clan were dispersed by James VI of Scotland & I of England, after the Union of the Crowns, 24 March 1603, along with many other reiver families out of the Marches and to other parts of Scotland, Ireland and the colonies, hence the widespread use of the name Carruthers around the globe. Many Carruthers can be found in North America.
The Chiefly line of the Carruthers began with the son of John Carruthers (1361) brother to Thomas, the first of Mouswald (1320), named Roger as 1st of Holmains who recieved the charter of Little Dalton and Holmains in 1375.
The Carruthers estate of Howmains was lost in 1772 when a financial disaster overwhelmed the family and the male line died out in the early 18th century with the death of the 12th Laird in 1807.
The Holmains line still exists however.
After 210 year without a chief, Clan Carruthers now has again a recognised Chief. Dr. Simon Peter Carruthers of Holmains has been recognised as Chief of Clan Carruthers by the Lord Lyon King of Arms, Dr Joseph Morrow, CBE, KStJ, QC, DL, LLD, the arbiter in determining chiefships through the confirmation of the right to bear the hereditary Chiefly Arms of a Scottish clan or family.
In a Decision issued on 19th August 2019 and published on 9th September 2019, the Lord Lyon found Peter; “entitled to be recognised in the name, style and title of;
’Simon Peter Carruthers of Holmains, Chief of the Name and Arms of Carruthers’
and maintained, ratified and confirmed the undifferenced Arms of Carruthers of Holmains c. 1672”.