The GILLROID mac Gillemartin of the old Clan Cameron is descended from GILLEROTH filius Gillemartin, who was witness to a grant of lands in Carric in the year 1223. This same GILLEROTH was the aider and abettor of Thomas, the illegitimate son of Alan, lord of Galloway. A certain GYLLEROCH of Urquhart witnessed an agreement regarding the lands of the church of Urquhart in 1233, and GILRUTH was the burgess of Roxburgh in 1338. William GILRUTH was one of the burgesses of Aberdeen chosen to accompany the provost to the field of Harlaw in 1411. A Duncan GILRUCHT contributed to repairs of a church in Aberdeen in 1508, and James GILRWITHT was witness to a witch trial in St. Andrews in 1575. The first people in Scotland to acquire fixed surnames were the nobles and great landowners, who called themselves, or were called by others, after the lands they possessed. Surnames originating in this way are known as territorial. Formerly lords of baronies and regalities and farmers were inclined to magnify their importance and to sign letters and documents with the names of their baronies and farms instead of their Christian names and surnames. The abuse of this style of speech and writing was carried so far that an Act was passed in the Scots parliament in 1672 forbidding the practice and declaring that it was allowed only to noblemen and bishops to subscribe by their titles. A notable member of the name was Robert Rowe GULRUTH, born in 1931, the American engineer, from Nashwauk, Minnesota. He graduated at the University of Minnesota in aeronautical engineering in 1935, and has ever since been associated with the design and operation of high speed and supersonic aircraft, guided missiles and space vehicles. In 1958 he was head of the NASA man-in-space programme which put the first American John Glenn into earth orbit in 1962. The next objective, known as the Apollo lunar landing project, was achieved under his direction on 20th July 1969, when Neil Armstrong on the Apollo II mission, became the first man to set foot on the moon.
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