A few years ago my sister and I spent the night at the "home" of the "head" (or Chief, I suppose) of Clan MacKerrell of Hillhouse. The best we could determine at that time is that the MacKerrell "clan" originated in the Hillhouse community in Ayrshire.
The so-called head of Clan MacKerrell of Hillhouse ran a bed-and-breakfast; he knew nothing about genealogy (just his own line and claim to the title). His wife informed us that the Hillhouse family was a sept of Clan MacKerrell and that we were welcomed to participate in any of their clan activities. (Neither of us have heard another word from this clan leader since we returned to the states.) Our impression was that they were just out to make a buck (charged 35 pounds each for a meal although we were served a light lunch of fruit for free). And we did by several yards of the "clan" fabric (a primarily blue plaid). (This man wore trousers made of the plaid; their dining room chair cushions was of the plaid. It is a very pretty plaid <G>.)
Anyway, what amused us the most was upon our arrival the first time they pronounced Hillhouse as Hillis. The spelling was, of course, Hillhouse. By the time we left following our second visit (when we actually spent the night), he was "correctly" pronouncing our name as Hillhouse and not Hillis.
Earlier on our trip we had met Sir Russell Hillhouse and his delightful wife. Sir Russell had laughingly told us about the clan chiefton (although they had never met). Sir Russell indicated to us that his ancestors were lowlanders from Ayrshire and as such were not affiliated with any clan. (The way we understood him, clans were a highland tradition/institution; lowlanders scoffed at the notion.) Sir Russell does not wear the tartan of Clan MacKerrell of Hillhouse; he does wear the tartan of his wife's Frazier family.
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