July 2015

In this Issue:

 July 2015 Meeting  Save the Date
 Letter From the Editor  Coming Events
 Stormont Dundas Glengarry Highlanders  The Full Scottish Breakfast
 Robbie Burns Supper  Society Officers
 Historical Events in Scotland Mystery Member
 Suggested Reading  A Word from our Sponsors

July 9 Meeting - A History of Scotland - DVD Presentation

History of Scotland DVD
6:30 - 7:30

Social Hour

7:30 - 8:30
A History of Scortland -Episode 1

8:30 pm
Raffle and 50/50 draws

Free admission to all

Episode 1 - The Last of the Free
At the dawn of the first millennium, there was no Scotland or England. In the first episode narrator Neil Oliver reveals the mystery of how the Gaelic Scottish Kingdom - Alba - was born, and why its role in on of the greatest battles ever fought on British soil defined the shape of Britain in the modern era. Oliver is a Scottish historian, archaeologist, television presenter and author.

Review by Quentin D. Stewart (November 17, 2010)
The first episode alone, "The Last of the Free," might be worth the price of this DVD. The viewer is treated to breathtaking vistas of Scotland with all its lochs, mountains, castles and fastnesses as Neil Oliver recounts the murky history of Scotland as it first emerges from the pages of history via Tacitus and his account of the Roman general Agricola's foray into Caledonia in 88 AD. Not much else is known of the northern barbarians for centuries, but they reemerge as the Picts as the Romans leave Britain for good. As Angles and Saxons replace Romans in the south we see Picts in the northeast of Scotland, Gaels in the west, and Britons in the south around the year 500 AD. Despite the Viking invasions of the British Isles Kenneth MacAlpin arises as king of the Picts, but it is his grandson, Constantine II, who becomes the first king of Scotland. During his 43 year reign Constantine introduces Gaelic ways to the Picts and Scotland is now known as Alba in Gaelic and Scotland in English even though the isle of Britain would remain an island of separate kingdoms and divided nations under no single monarch for centuries to come.

Letter from Editor, Don Finch

Dear fellow Caledonians,

Don FinchHappy July 4th, America! And to our Canadian friends – Happy Canada Day on July 1st.

Did you know that in just the first two weeks of July, the following ‘National’ days are observed:  Gingersnap Day, Chocolate Wafer Day, Barbeque Day, Fried Chicken Day, Strawberry Sundae Day, Pina Colada Day, and 13 more special 24-hour periods! No wonder there are so many successful diet and weight loss programs – they’re designed to counteract the fulfilling of our gastronomical patriotic duties!

The Society’s fiscal year ends on June 30th and the Board will be reviewing the financial statements according to our By-Laws, in preparation for the Annual Meeting in October. The preliminary numbers show us being in a favorable (black ink) position, and we’ll make the full report to our Members in Good Standing in October.

Plans are well underway for our two major annual events, the Robbie Burns Supper, and the 52nd Annual Scottish Gathering and Highland Games. You can read more in this issue.

Finally, new member Dr. David Patterson will be introducing Episode 1 of the wonderful BBC series, The History of Scotland at our next monthly meeting which will be held at the ICC, at 6:30 pm on Thursday July 9th.


Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders
Article by Don Finch, who grew up in Cornwall, Ontario. His father served as Captain in the Stormont, Dundas & Glengarry Highlanders

SD&G TartanThe Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders is a Primary Reserve infantry regiment of the Canadian Army. It is part of 33 Canadian Brigade Group, 4th Canadian Division and is headquartered in Cornwall, Ontario. The SD&G is a kilted regiment, and the only one authorized to wear the MacDonell of Glengarry tartan.

Its heritage is from Colonel Alexander MacDonell of Glengarry (1773 – 1828), who was clan chief of Clan MacDonell of Glengarry and was also a personality well known to Walter Scott. A haughty and flamboyant man,  whose character and behaviour  gave Scott the model for the wild Highland clan chieftain Fergus MacIvor in the pioneering historical novel, Waverley of 1810.

As part of his regiment's uniform, he invented (or adopted) the Glengarry. The boat-shaped cap without a peak is made of thick-milled woolen material with a toorie (or bobble) on the top and ribbons hanging down behind, capable of being folded flat. It has become part of the uniform of a number of Scottish regiments, with variations in the band around above the brim and in the colours.
SD&G crest
The Regimental Crest: Superimposed upon a background of thistle, leaves and flowers the letters SDG; below, a raven on a rock superimposed on a maple leaf. A half scroll to the left of the maple leaf is inscribed DILEAS; another to the right inscribed GU BAS; (faithful unto death) above, a semi-annulus inscribed GLENGARRY FENCIBLES and surmounted by the Crown. The whole superimposed upon a Saint Andrew’s cross.

Glengarry County in modern day Ontario, is an historic region with lots of Scottish background. This is because it is the site of where many Scottish Highlanders settled after the Highland Clearances.  Scottish Gaelic / Canadian Gaelic is a spoken language in the county, but the number of speakers has declined to a great degree. Maxville Public School in Maxville, Glengarry still teaches the language to its residents if they are willing to learn.

Also known in the region are the Glengarry Highland Games where many Scottish competitions are held to celebrate Scottish Culture. The chief Scottish town in Glengarry was Cornwall, located in modern-day Ontario. It was reinforced in 1786 when The McDonald arrived at Quebec from Greenock with 520 new pioneers. Soon immigrants came from all parts of Scotland to make it one of the most important Scots-Canadian communities.


Clan lands of the MacDonells of Glengarry, one of the many branches of the MacDonalds. Many people from this area emigrated to Canada.

Burns Supper - January 23, 2016

Greatest Poet

We’re returning to the Phoenix Country Club to
celebrate the life and works of Robert Burns

Vicki Phegley, Burns Committee Chair is looking for volunteers to assist.

Contact her at: vickimunro@outlook.com

Scottish Historical Events in July
by Jo Ramsdell

July 1, 1782 - The Act of Proscription Repealed

The Act of Proscription came in the aftermath of the ’45, the last Jacobite Rising.  It was an attempt by the Hanoverian government to destroy the clan system of society across the Highlands.  Following the Jacobite defeat at Culloden, Bonnie Prince Charlie fled to France.  His supporters who remained suffered terrible punishments. 

New laws were imposed that abolished heritable jurisdiction, claimed estates for the crown, banned the playing of bagpipes, the wearing of tartan and Highland dress and restricted the possession of weapons.

There were many contemporary reports indicating that “it would take more than an act of Parliament to stop the Highlander wearing his traditional clothes.”  What the act did seem to stop during its 36 year span was the dyeing and weaving of tartan and the loss of some ancient patterns.

George IVThe act did, however, imbibe tartan with a frission of danger and intrigue and actually helped to keep it alive and promoted the myths and romanticism surrounding it.  This was greatly helped by the increasing use of tartan by the Highland regiments which were quite legally raised by leading citizens and often called after their commanding officers. 

The repeal of the Act of Proscription was given by George III on July 1, 1782.  By this time kilts and tartan were no longer ordinary Highland wear.  But within two years Highland aristocrats set up the Highland Society of Edinburgh and soon other clubs followed with aims including “the general use of ancient Highland dress”.   This would lead to turning what had been seen as “uncivilized outfits of mountain thieves” into national dress claimed by the whole of Scotland and eventually the world.

Forty years after George III repealed the Act, his son George IV visited Scotland in full Highland dress.

Save the Date - March 2016

March 2016

Coming Western US & Canada Highland Games

July 10-11 Payson UT paysonscottishfestival.org/
July 11-12 Skagit Valley WA celticarts.org
July 18-19 Flagstaff AZ nachs.info
July 18-19 Elizabeth CO elizabethcelticfestival.com
July 25-26 Enumclaw WA sshga.org
August 1-2 Monterey CA montereyscotgames.com
August 9-10 Snowmass CO scottishgames.org
August 15-16 Bitterroot MT bitterrootscottishirishfestival.org
August 21-22 La Grande OR neoregoncelts.com
September 5-6 Calgary AB calgaryhighlandgames.org
September 5-6 Canmore AB canmorehighlandgames.ca
September 5-6 Pleasanton CA caledonian.org
September 10-11 Estes Park CO scotfest.com
September 26 Boise ID idahoscots.org
October 9-11 Ventura CA seaside-games.com
November 6-8 Tucson AZ tucsoncelticfestival.org

Suggested Reading
A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains - by Isabella Bird

These are the descriptive letters, written in 1873, by Isabella Bird, a courageous and spirited British woman living in Edinburgh, recounting for her sister her adventures on horseback over 800 miles of American wilderness.  Lady Bird’s setting is the imposing and wild landscapes of the Colorado mountains.  For those of you who know the Longs Peak Scottish Festival in Estes Park you will recognize many of the scenes that Lady Bird describes as they existed before the turn of the 20th Century.  It was a wild and unsettled place in those days and Lady Isabella Bird has a lovely way of telling her amazing tale.    

Lady ion the RockiesIn 1872, Isabella Bird, daughter of a clergyman, set off alone to the Antipodes 'in search of health' and found she had embarked on a life of adventurous travel. In 1873, wearing Hawaiian riding dress, she rode her horse through the American Wild West, a terrain only newly opened to pioneer settlement.

The letters that make up this volume were first published in 1879. They tell of magnificent, unspoiled landscapes and abundant wildlife, of encounters with rattlesnakes, wolves, pumas and grizzly bears, and her reactions to the volatile passions of the miners and pioneer settlers. A classic account of a truly astounding journey.

(Available in both hardcover and paperback at www.amazon.com)

The Full Scottish Breakfast

FullScottish Breakfast

Mystery Member for July 2015

Our Mystery Member has been very active in the Society since - well, not long after this photo was taken.

Can you identify him? (Answer at the end of the newsletter)

July 2015 Mystery Member


Membership Renewal Reminder

Dues are still only $25 Single and $40 Family. This admits you to all our wonderful monthly events with food and entertainment provided.

It’s easy to pay by credit card or PayPal, just jump to the Membership Page

Society Meetings
Regular membership meetings are held the second Thursday of each month at the Irish Cultural Center, 1106 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ. beginning at 6:30 pm. Come join us or log on to www.arizonascots.com.

Caledonian Society Officers
President: Don Finch
Immediate Past President: Mark Clark
Past President: (2010 – 2012) Jean Latimer
Vice President  
Secretary & Membership Chair: Ian Warrander
Treasurer: David McBee
Games Chair
Paul Bell
Trustee 1: Mark Pelletier
Trustee 2: Michelle Crownhart
Trustee 3: Thom von Hapsburg
Newsletter Editor:

Don Finch
Statutory Agent: Dan Miller

A Word from our Sponsors

Kilt Rental USA

Bagpiper USA
Len Wood


Mystery Member
The mystery member this month is Alan Ramsdell

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