Scotch-Irish-L ArchivesArchiver > Scotch-Irish > 1997-05 > 0862860409
From: Dan Wilson <>
Subject: RE: GAELIC SURNAMES/SPELLING
Date: Mon, 05 May 1997 12:26:49 -0700 (MST)
On Mon, 5 May 1997, Earl Fain IV wrote:
> Yes, Caroline, I agree, but we must also be careful not to stereotyping =
> lead us away from the truth of our ancestry. My McDonalds fit the =
> Scotch-Irish definition except for one thing--they weren't Lowlanders. =
> If I had believed the books, and stopped investigating that possibility, =
> I never would have known that they really were Scotch-Irish, and I would =
> be at a dead end. BTW, I now understand that Scotch-Irish history was =
> rewritten a bit to edit out the Highland connection, because they were =
> of Celtic origin, and the historians/scholars didn't want to suggest any =
> connection between the Irish and Scotch-Irish. =20
> So, where's the truth? You never really know, so it never hurts to keep =
> an open mind about things. I, for one, don't want to see this debate =
> degenerate into a squabble over technicalities, but I'm glad that people =
> at least present some of these issues, so we can all be aware of them.
> Happy hunting,
> Lynne Bernard
Hmm... It seems that we need to think about the definition of Scots-Irish.
In the broader view, *all* Scots who migrated to Ulster are in fact
Ulster Scots, regardless of religion or location of their former homes in
However, I've also heard arguments in favor of restricting the term to
descendants of the Plantation Scots who were lowlanders and Presbyterians
because King James I and VI ordered that no Highlanders were to be granted
lands in in the Plantation. His reasoning was that the Clan system
followed by the Highlanders was too similar to that of the native Irish
which he was attempting to control. He wanted to introduce a different
culture into Ulster in hopes that he might make the land more productive.
Somewhere I have a copy of a paper presented by one of the Presbyterian
ministers in Ulster, and it gives his view of the Scots-Irish character.
I'll post it later. I grew up thinking that Scots-Irish (an American term,
BTW) meant Irish Presbyterians of Scottish descent. I believe this is the
view held by most of the "standard" texts on the subject, but if someone
has found otherwise, please let us know.
Arizona State Univ.