Scots and the Slave Trade

As Tom Devine has recently emphasised, the role of Scots in the slave trade has largely been ignored in traditional scholarship—a result too of the fact that prominent eighteenth-century Scots, including some of the leading thinkers of the Enlightenment, were opposed to it. For David Hume, slavery was ‘more cruel and oppressive than any civil Read More

The Scots in India

After the ill-fated Darien venture, many Scots were still keen on making a mark overseas, and the Far East was an attractive destination. Scots first began participating in eastern trade through European chartered companies, ‘but for those Scots who remained at home the key to future success lay in the establishment of a foothold’ in Read More

A ‘born soldier and leader of men’

  On this day in 1915 the Gallipoli Campaign commenced – a campaign that is remembered today, ANZAC Day, in many localities throughout Australia and New Zealand. An opportune moment to also remember another Scot as part of the series of First World War posts on this Blog. Hugh Stewart was born at Premnay in Read More

John Galt and the Colonization of Upper Canada

On this day in 1839 Scotsman John Galt died in Greenock. Best known as the writer of  Annals of the Parish published in 1821, Galt’s name was and remains familiar to many Scots around the world. A less widely-known fact, however, is that Galt was also a colonizer, being appointed Secretary to the Canada Company Read More

Tartan Day Parade in New York

It was my privilege to walk with the American-Scottish Foundation on this year’s Tartan Day parade – the 16th annual parade in New York. It was a truly brilliant experience and I met many interesting people. Being able to walk down 6th Avenue, with spectators waving the Saltire all round was simply brilliant. A big Read More

The Scots Guards

28 March 1642 saw the formation of the Scots Guards regiment, when King Charles I commissioned the Marquess of Argyll, Chief of Clan Campbell, to raise a regiment of 1,500 men in Scotland for service in Ireland. The regiment was to become the King’s so-called ‘Lyfe Guard of Foot’, which  eventually became the Scots Guards Read More

A Pioneer for Women’s Rights

New Zealand became the first country in the world to grant women the right to vote in 1893. This was thanks in no small way to Kate Sheppard, the leading figure in the New Zealand suffrage movement. Born in Liverpool in early March 1847 to Scottish parents, Kate made her way to New Zealand together Read More

A Piper and Soldier

Commemorations of the Centenary of the First World War will accompany us over the next few years, and there will be many events to remember the millions of people who died during the War, as well as the many soldiers who served. The commemorations will also give us an opportunity, however, to learn about some Read More

Celebrating the Arrival of the ‘Blenheim’

In the early days of settlement in New Zealand, the so-called New Zealand Company and its offshoots were chiefly responsible for bringing out new settlers from Britain to New Zealand. While many Scots only arrived in the late 1840s, making their way to the newly-established Free church settlement of Dunedin, there were a number of Read More

A Great History

So there I was, back in New Zealand at the Turakina Highland Games. But this year was special as it marked the celebration of the 150th Games – what an amazing feat. The weather agreed wholeheartedly as it was a gloriously sunny summer day (and the only such nice day in a while). As local Read More

1 5 6 7 8 9 12