The Hannay tartan has been long established in the South West of Scotland. An old kilt worn by Commander Alex Hannay (1788 - 1844) was discovered by his descendant, Miss Anne Hannay, in the family chest and came into the possession of Councillor John Hannay, a well known tartan designer and collector. He created a new design based on the old which included a red stripe. This sett was produced around 1950 by Messrs Galt of Galloway. The black and white check is a common feature of Lowland tartans.
It is said that a Hannay took up the cross alongside Richard I to take part in the Third Crusade, to free the Holy Lands of Palestine from the grasp of the Muslim Saracen.
The taking up of the Cross held a lot of responsibilities and expenses. In doing so the Chief had to arm and transport his knights, servants and vassels, and horses over several thousands of miles, often for extended periods of time. The Hannays had to have been extremely wealthy at this time, to be able to afford such a venture.
The Hannay then adopted the fitched cross mounted over a crescent which signifies the Christian victory over the Muslim Saracen. Thereafter the Chief of the Clan wore this symbol as a crest on his helmet. He would then have made up duplicates of his crest, in pewter or bronze castings, mounted on a leather strap, which he would have issued to his family, knights and household members, to distinguish his household from others.