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B-) by Minnesota Scots • "Scots in Pre-Plantation Ulster-Part 2."

The links between Scotland and Ulster date from time immemorial and for millennia people have been crossing the North Channel connecting the two. In the Middle Ages mercenary soldiers, known as galloglagh, from the Highlands and Islands of Scotland arrived in Ireland to fight for the Gaelic chieftains. In the sixteenth century, there were further influxes of mercenaries, often referred to as Redshanks, from Scotland. For example, when Turlough Luineach O’Neill, chieftain of the O’Neills, married Lady Agnes Campbell in 1569 a thousand mercenaries, probably from Argyll, arrived in the north Tyrone area. It is likely that the descendants of these compromised the above 3 or 4 score Scottish families inhabiting at Strabane in 1598.
Very different from these Highlands and Islands Scots were the Lowland Scots who began to arrive in some numbers in counties Antrim and Down in the early seventeenth century. The large-scale Scottish settlement in County Down from 1606 onwards was promoted by two men from Ayrshire, James Hamilton and Hugh Montgomery, who had acquired large estates from lands formerly owned by Con O’Neill.
The largest land grant made in Ulster in the early seventeenth century was the grant of the greater part of the four northern baronies in County Antrim- an area of well over 300,000 acres- to Randal MacDonnell in 1603. Originally from the Isles, the MacDonnells had been establishing a secure foothold in north Antrim for some time before this. Despite his background and strong support for Catholicism, Ranald Macdonnell invited Protestant Lowland Scots to settle on his lands in order to develop his massive estate.
In the west of the province there had been some penetration by Lowland Scots prior to the implementation of the Plantation scheme. One who actively encouraged Scots to settle in this region was George Montgomery, brother of Sir Hugh Montgomery, the County Down landowner, and from 1605 the bishop of Derry, Raphoe, and Clogher. The chronicler of the family’s history, writing at the end of the seventeenth century, praised Bishop Montgomery for his “usefulness in advancing the British plantation in those three northern dioceses”. He encouraged Scots to settle on lands owned by the Church by offering them land on good terms.

Reprinted completely from the pamphlet “The Story of the Scots, The Plantation of Ulster 1610-1630", Ulster-Scots Agency, Board of Ulster-Scots.

[x]keywords: Scotland, clans, history, periodical, diaspora
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# 39 - Ulster Scots • by Minnesota Scots - 08/26/2014 - 16:18 - - Minnesota - USA
B-) by Minnesota Scots • "Scotland on the Eve of the Plantation-Part 1."

It may surprise many people to learn that in the early seventeenth century more Scots went to Poland then came to Ulster. In fact more Scots went to Scandinavia than came to Ulster. We often think of the Scottish migration to Ulster as being of enormous significance in the population history of Scotland. There is no denying that it was, but the reality of the situation is that in the early 1600s the Scots were a people on the move and Ulster was just one of their destinations.
During the reign of James VI Scotland became a much more politically stable kingdom than it had been for some decades. The King was able to impose his authority on the nobility and gentry and to establish law and order in the notoriously unruly Boarders. Scotland’s population was rising and there was a surplus of young men seeking employment or adventure-hence the numbers of Scots venturing abroad. These migrants, however, were not traveling as part of any coordinated colonization scheme.
Prior to the Plantation, the Scottish crown had been involved in a number of attempts to “plant civility” in the fringes of Scotland in the 1590s and early 1600s. The king hoped that by planting Lowland Scots in the isles would “reform and civilize the best inclined among them: rooting out or transporting the barbarous and stubborn sort”, though the results of these endeavors were mixed. Some of those who were later to play a part on the Plantation in Ulster were involved in these initiatives, such as Andrew Stuart, Lord Ochiltree, who would receive lands in east Tyrone. With the succession of James VI to the throne of England, the Scots were guaranteed a key role in the official efforts to colonize Ulster. The Scots embraced the opportunities for economic and social advancement presented by the Plantation scheme with much enthusiasm at all levels of society. The scheme for the Plantation in Ulster, therefore, provided Scotland with an opportunity to embark on its first, and ultimately most successful, project of colonization beyond its shores.

Reprinted completely from the pamphlet “The Story of the Scots, The Plantation of Ulster 1610-1630", Ulster-Scots Agency, Board of Ulster-Scots.

[x]keywords: news, Scotland, clans, history, periodical, diaspora
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# 38 - Ulster Scots • by Minnesota Scots - 08/08/2014 - 18:33 - - Minnesota - USA
:-P Home to home again, by Don Bruce.

We got back to Minnesota around midnight on Monday after 24 exhausting hours of travel. Now that we have been home for a few days, I have had time to kind of digest what happened on our trip. It truly was an amazing experience to be there for the Bannockburn anniversary, to be on the battlefield site on the actual anniversary day, to be able to participate in a family celebration for something that happened 700 years ago, but is still such an important part of Scottish history. My sons and daughter-in-law were quite impressed and maybe only now have begun to truly appreciate the heritage that is their family history. I know I truly appreciate it and am humbled by it.

The entire trip was all that I had hoped for during the 8 years that we anticipated and planned for it. There really isn’t anything I would do differently. We once again were made to appreciate the genuine friendliness of the Scottish people, how kindly they were when we needed it, and how glad they were to see us Americans come over there to celebrate their history. I hope you have enjoyed reading about our adventures. I enjoyed sharing them with you. Writing them down made me think through what happened each day and form the great memories that we now have of this once-in-a-lifetime experience. Now I just have to adjust to the idea that the trip we had looked forward to for so long is over.

See you at the Fair!

[x] keywords: news, community, events, Minnesota
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# 37 - Home to home again - 07/10/2014 - 21:11 - - Minnesota - USA
B-) by Minnesota Scots.

I would like to thank Don Bruce for his blogs on the Family of Bruce and the 700th Anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn. I know from the views that a lot of you found it interesting. We will continue to attempt to provide this kind of reporting to you in the future. We also are going to bring you a series of history snips about the Plantations of Ulster over the rest of the summer as well. Thanks again to Don and his family for their contribution!

[x] keywords: news, community, events, Minnesota
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# 36 - Minnesota Scots - 07/09/2014 - 15:01 - - Minnesota - USA
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