Recorded in over fifty spelling forms including Cahun, Calhoun, Colquhoun, Colqueran, and Colhoun, this famous surname is of Scottish origins, but is also widely recorded in Northern Ireland. It is locational and originates from a place known as the "Lands of Colquhoun" in the county of Dumbarton. These lands being granted to Robert de Colechon in 1240 by the earl of Levenax. This Robert de Colechon is recorded in many charters for the area, and seems to have been a very close associate of the earl, his lands being obviously granted for service. In the year 1285 as Sir Robert of Kylkone, spelling not being a strong point of the medieval period, he was one of an inquest which decided the rightful heirs of Dufgall, brother of the earl of Levenax were the daughters of one Finlay of Campsie! other recordings include that of Umfrai de Kilwhone, given as being a knight of Dunbretan (Dunbarton) who in 1296 rendered allegiance to the short lived republican government of Scotland, 1296 - 1306. It has been suggested that he was the son of Sir Robert Colechon. Throughout the following centuries nameholders continued to pay a major part in Scottish history. For instance in the early 17th century as ironfounders they were employed by the King Gustavus of Sweden to cast cannon for his army, and it is said that under the spellings of Cahun and Cahund, they are still resident in Sweden. Other examples of the recordings include John de Culquon, sheriff of Dunbarton in 1427, and Adam Choquhoun, the rector of Stobo, in 1513. To some extent the Americans have invented their own spellings, and these include John Caldwell Calhoun (1782 - 1850), Vice-President of the USA in 1840.
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