May 2013

In this Issue:

 The Wallaces of Iowa  Coming Events
• Flowers of the Forest  May Celebrations
 Great Warriors of Celtic Myths  Society Officers
 Know the Clans  

The Wallaces of Iowa - Scots to Remember

Three Generatins of National Agricultural Service

   Henry Wallace was born in Pennsylvania  in 1836 of Scottish emigrant parents who came to the United States from Ulster.  He attended a theological seminary and became a minister of the United Presbyterian Church.  After serving several churches, poor health forced him to give up the pastorate in 1877.  Henry moved to Iowa, where he began farming.

Turning to writing, he worked twelve yeas as a contributing editor to Iowa Homestead.  In 1895 two of his sons joined him and they began to publish Wallaces' Farm & Dairy in which he combined agricultural journalism with religion and made Wallaces the leading agriculture periodical in the country.  In 1908 Theodore Roosevelt appointed Henry to the Country Life Commission.  A prolific writer of books about agriculture and religion, he died in 1916.

With his passing, the editorship of Wallaces' Farmer, as the magazine was now called, passed to his son Henry Cantwell Wallace, the second of his sons.  Henry C. had worked on his father's farm and had attended school to learn the printer's trade.    He was hired as an assistant professor of agriculture at the Iowa State Agricultural College.  In 1921 Henry C. was appointed Secretary of Agriculture by President Harding and was reappointed to that post by the succeeding president, Calvin Coolidge.  But his appointment was cut short when he died in 1924.

In 1921 when Henry C. was appointed Secretary, his brother Henry Agard Wallace assumed the editorship of the family magazine.  Henry A. attended Iowa State College where he excelled in animal husbandry and agriculture.  While at Iowa State he met George Washington Carver and began a lifelong friendship that would later throw him into the civil right movements of the 1940s.  In 1933 Henry A. was appointed Secretary of Agriculture by President Franklin Roosevelt.  At this time he left behind the family publication.  In 1940 Henry A. became Roosevelt's running mate and was elected Vice-President.  In 1944 the Democratic nominating convention, after a bitter floor fight, nominated Harry Truman for Vice-President.  Roosevelt asked Henry A. to be Secretary of Commerce.

When Truman assumed the Presidency after Roosevelt's death, Henry clashed with him over the issue of atomic research.  Because of his outspoken criticism of the President he was dismissed from the Commerce Department.  In 1948 Henry was rejected by the Democrats and ran for President on the Progressive Party ticket, his last endeavor in politics.  Henry spent his later years experimenting with cross-breeding plants, especially strawberries and corn.  Henry A. died in 1965 from Lou Gehrig's disease.

Thus passed the era of three Henry Wallaces.  All three had shaped agricultural issues and policies.  Two had served as Secretary of Agriculture and one had be Vice-President and put into practice the causes they espoused.  Few families make such an impact on a nation, but these three Scottish-Americans should be remembered for their impact.  They are surly Scots to Remember.

Flowers of the Forest

We are saddened by the passing of Madeline "Maddie" Forman who died on April 15.  She was a long-time member of the Caledonia Society and an Honorary Lifetime member.  Maddie was involved for many years in the Royal Scottish Country Dance group which performed at the Games each year as well as other performances around the area during the year.  We extend our sympathy to her family and her many friends. 

Great Warriors of Celtic Myths

From the rough and tumble of the early Celtic myths emerge tales of warriors who are among the legends' greatest heroes.  There is some evidence to suggest that they may  have actually lived in the first century A.D.  They often have more than one name and stand for different things, both human and god-like.

The great warrior princess, flame-haired Scathach, appears in some stories as the Gaelic Goddess of the Dead.  Her function was to search the battlefields for the souls of those who died heroically in combat and guide them along the "Death Journey" to Tir Nan Ogm the Land of Eternal Youth and Beauty.  In her duties, Scathach is similar to the Valkyrie of the Norse legends. Some sources say her father was the King of Scythis.  Others, that she was the daughter of Ard-Greimme, lord of a mysterious land known as Lethra. 

The home of these ancient gods and goddesses, heroes and heroines, according to myth, may have been the island we now know as Skye.  Skye is known by many names and is the site of many legends.  To the Vikings, Skye was known as the Land of Clouds.  In Gaelic it is called "Eilean a' Cheo" or the Isle of the Mist. It was supposedly on this magical island that the great legendary warrior princess had her training camp for young male warriors.  Certainly real-life female warriors existed, and it was customary for them to train young men in the arts of war. 

Another great hero in Celtic history and mythology—and the much-renowned pupil of Scathach—is he proud figure known as Cuchulainn.  The name Means "Hound of Ulster," though he was first known as Setanta, indicating he may have belonged to a tribe known as the Setantii.  This great mythical warrior probably had his roots in historical reality.  His extraordinary feats in life became grossly exaggerated in the telling and eventually assumed the nature of legend.

At a period when there was much interaction between Northern Ireland and the western seaboard of Scotland, Cuchulainn was identified as a son of Ulster (Northern Ireland).  In his mythical incarnation, he is the son of the Celtic sun god, Lugh, and later became revered as a sun divinity himself.  Described as a youth of great beauty, he has been compared to the Greek hero Achilles.  Cuchulainn was a member of the exclusive military brotherhood known as the Red Branch of Ulster. 

Cuchulainn's adventures as he travels from Ulster to Scotland to become a student of Scathach are worthy of myth status.  He becomes her greatest student and she rewards him with a magical sword called the "Caladin" and the rare gift of prophecy.  The legends of him are similar to those describing the mythical life of King Arthur.   In the magical sword given to Cuchulainn, scholars have seen a parallel with the magic sword, Excalibur, given to Arthur by the Lady of the Lake.     

Know the Clans:
What's in a Name?
By Ron Dempsey, FSA Scot


A Robert Montgomerie was the first recorded Montgomery in Scotland when he obtained the lands of Eaglesham in Renfrewshire.  He, like many Norman younger sons followed David I north to Scotland when he was released from captivity in England in the 12th century. 

In 1388 at the battle of Otterburn, John Montgomery captured Henry Percy (better known as Hotspur).  From this John received a ransom that enabled him to build a castle at Polnoon.  More land and titles came to the family through good marriage alliances.  This same John acquired the Baronies of Eglinton and Ardrossan through marriage to their heiress.  His grandson, Alexander became first Lord Montgomery


   Brown, in its original form refers to one who was dark in color or with brown or dark hair.    Browns in Scotland are found in almost every county, particularly in the Lowlands or non-Gaelic areas.  They are found also in the Highlands and islands but were not so prolific there.  They were a result of Lowlanders moving to the area or an Anglicization of a Gaelic name.

In Ireland the name came with the Anglo Normans as "Le Brun" and later was translated to the English Brown or Browne.  After the 16th century there would have been many incursions by English, Welsh and Scots bearing the same name and there were waves of people sent to colonize Ulster and beyond.  With so many Irish families having Scottish names in Ireland, particularly Ulster, it is a problem trying to trace them back to Scotland when they arrived so many centuries before.  This was compounded by families who probably moved back and forth between the two countries over the centuries 

Coming Events

May 3-5 Texas Highland Games - Arlington TX
May 9 Monthly Meeting
May 11 Prescott Highland Games
July 6-7 Monterey CA Games
July 20-21 Flagstaff Highland Games

SOCIETY MEETING Regular membership meetings are held the second Thursday of each month at the Irish Cultural Center, 1106 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ. Beginning at 6:30pm. Come join us or log on to

May Celebrations
If you would like your special date recognized in our monthly newsletter, we need to hear from you. Please let us know your correct birthday and anniversary information by email to and it will be included in our Celebration list.

May 6 Kay Morneau - Birthday
May 22 Sandy Sanderson - Birthday
May 25 Dennis Kavanaugh - Birthday
May 27 Robert McGregor - Birthday
May 31 James Weber - Birthday

Caledonian Society Officers
Area Chairperson
President: (2012 – 2014) Wendy Hurley
Past President: (2010 – 2012) Jean Latimer
1st Vice President: Mark Clark
Games Chair
Jason Temple
Membership and Programs Chair Don Finch
Trustee: Mark Pelletier
Trustee: Andy Walker
Newsletter Editor: Jo Ramsdell