June 2017

In this Issue:

 June Event - Celtic Book Faire  Meet Our Social Media Director
 Letter From the Editor  William H. Wallace 1922-2017
 Our Guest Authors  Society Officers
 Research Your Scottish Ancestry  Coming Events - Valley & Nearby
 Odds and Sods  Future Gatherings for 2017
 New Event Director for CSA  A Word from our Advertisers

Celtic Book Fair - June 8


Arizona's Scottish cultural group, The Caledonian Society is hosting this event on Thursday June 8th. Learn more about these writers and their books.

• Iain Lundy from Ayrshire, Scotland has a new book: Between Daylight and Hell, Scots Who Left A Stain On American History

• Jude Johnson from Tucson will sign: Cactus Cymry, from a trilogy on Welsh immigrants in SoAz in the 1880's

• Daughters of Scotia member Toni Dailey Sarcinella will sign her children's book: Wolf and Owl Remember

Check out the author biographies and pictures below!

Thursday June 8th at the Irish Cultural Center
1106 N. Central, Phoenix
6:30 pm ------------- Social half hour
7:00 pm ----------- Meet the Authors
8:30 pm -------------- 50/50 drawing

Members ------------------- Always Free
Non-members -- $5.00 donation requested

Letter from the Editor, Don Finch

Dear fellow Caledonians:

June is indeed a unique month as it contains so many ‘special’ days, including National Go Barefoot Day (June 1); National Doughnut Day (1st Friday); and of course, National Take Your Dog To Work Day (June 23rd).

And our brothers and sisters in Scotland have that special event which should be the gold standard for all Gatherings, the Islay Festival of Music & Malt in early June which involves mostly drinking whisky, bowling and fly-fishing!  www.islayfestival.com/

But wait – we can top that! This month’s Gathering on June 8th is our first annual Celtic Book Faire featuring three Arizona-based authors. Additional details appear in the newsletter. Maybe we’ve got another Robert Louis Stevenson, Dylan Thomas or Sherman Alexie in our midst!

In addition to our regular 50-50 draw, we’re having a June Jumble with lots of door prizes available; you can win with your 50-50 ticket stubs.

Welsh flagWe’re welcoming the Welsh League of Arizona who will be holding their monthly meeting in conjunction with the Society’s. Your Editor attended their May meeting which featured two presentations: “The American-Welsh-Connection”, and “Welsh or English?” I’d encourage more Caledonians to attend their first Saturday events at the ICC.

Tired of the mainstream media? You’ll get ‘all the news you need to be a Scot’ in Arizona from Allison Hawn who’s joining us as Social Media Director. Her bio is in this issue.

We’re also pleased to announce the appointment of Darryl Toupkin of Fieldworks Events & Marketing as our Event Director, under the guidance of VP Games Paul Bell. Darryl will be assuming this position on September 1st.
Paul is traveling to Chicago this month to attend their 31st Annual Scottish Festival & Highland Games,  www.scottishfestivalchicago.org/  as part of our program to seek out ‘best practices’ of our Scottish events across North America.

Don Finch

Finally, I’d like to make our readers aware that long time contributor, and Past Editor of the Desert Highlander newsletter Jo Ramsdell is not doing too well. Husband Alan has advised us that she’s been at Banner Hospital and will now begin treatments at home. Contact me for address and phone number.

So, it’s OK to go barefoot, eat a donut and take your dog to work in June, but it’s not alright to miss our Celtic Book Faire on June 8th. See you there!

Don Finch, Editor

Our Guest Authors - June 8, 2017

Iain LundyIain Lundy

“In March of 2015, I became an expat Scot in America myself. The previous month, Whittles Publishing in Dunbeath, Caithness had agreed to publish my book project, and I had one year to get 17 chapters written. So, my stories about disgraceful Scots were written in the sweltering heat of Arizona. At one point, when the house was busy, I even took my laptop to a coffee shop and knocked out a few hundred words there. A veritable JK Rowling moment.”

Positively Scottish, Dec. 23, 2016

Jude JohnsonJude Johnson

Jude is the author of the Dragon & Hawk historical novel trilogy set in the Arizona Territory, and has also written short stories and nonfiction. She is a member of Gecko Gals Ink, LLC, a group of sassy Tucson authors who are “differently expertised.” She has studied the Welsh Language and learned just enough to be dangerous in Cardiff pubs. She also speaks bad border Spanish that gets better with cerveza. She lives in Tucson with her long-suffering husband and son, who have resigned themselves to ingesting charred food while she’s writing.

Toni Sarcinella

Toni SarcinellaToni reaches into her Native American Folklore history to create her new children's story presented as an ancient lesson of wisdom to help with today's world problems. Antoinette draws on her own Hunkpapa Lakota and Assiniboine heritage to bring her book, Wolf & Owl Remember, to a level that all cultures can identify with. Kumi, a young boy full of spirit and curiosity, comes across an injured bird. In a compassionate effort to help the bird, Kumi takes it home. The bird recognizes Kumi's innocent eagerness for knowledge and introduces him to a Wolf and Owl. The animals take Kumi on a mystical journey through space and time where they and other animals share their stories of life.

Research Your Scottish Ancestry

Online Subscription Resources

Robert Wilbanksby Robert M. Wilbanks IV, B.A.
Chief Genealogist & Historian, C.S.A.

Up to this point, I have discussed beginning genealogy research techniques and sources. But, by now, you are probably wondering, “Where do I go to find these records and information?”

Traditionally, I would send you to archives, official records centers, specialty genealogy libraries, and local history collections in libraries in the localities of your ancestors, and many more physical facilities. There are a variety of places around the United States, Canada, and around the British Isles, where a genealogist would go to research family history.

However, the ability to travel to these localities isn’t always feasible economically. And even if traveling to the ancestral homeland is possible, the last thing you want to do is spend most of the time inside libraries and dark basement archives.

In today’s high-tech age, the internet has become a rich extensive research tool for genealogists any time, with access day or night, from home or anywhere else. Many libraries, records centers, and archives are making historic records more freely accessible on the internet. Additionally, many free websites have been created by genealogists, and genealogical organizations, as well as local history societies, heritage groups, and more.

Additionally, with the growing interest worldwide, genealogy has also become big business on the internet, with many fee-based subscription commercial genealogy sites on the internet. While for a long time I have generally always been opposed to these big fee-based websites, the reality is they are here and here to stay, and have become the standard beginner’s resource and an integral part of genealogy research in general.

Many of these sites have an extensive wealth of records and original documents and resources Worldwide. They include the ability to build a family tree, based upon research findings, with the ability to share the tree with others, as well as print or download the trees.

A newer aspect of these fee-based sites are subscription fee levels limiting then increasing research and records access based upon fee level chosen. If you are a beginner, or in the early stages of your research, or your research is initially specific to United States records, I would highly recommend beginning at the lowest monthly subscription level until your research reaches a point that requires upgrading.

The following is a brief listing and description of the most notable fee based genealogy websites:

Ancestry www.ancestry.com  The most prominent of subscription based genealogy sites, Ancestry originally began as a genealogy publishing company based out of Provo, Utah. It slowly acquired smaller genealogy companies and databases, and created a strong online presence with the ability to build genealogy trees. They have over 16 billion records and additional user-generated content of 70 million family trees, 200 photographs and user scanned in documents and written stories. Levels of subscription begin at about $20 per month for U.S. records only, and increases at least three more levels which include international records. A limited Library Edition of Ancestry is provided to most public libraries and is only accessible on-site at the library. You can take your laptop to the library and access the program through the library wifi and access records for research only.

FindMyPast www.findmypast.com    A London based genealogy research service, that changed directions by making resources available online. They were the first company in the world to make the complete birth, marriage, and death indexes for England and Wales available online. Now has over 4 billion searchable records worldwide. In 2007 it was awarded The Queen’s Award for Inovation. The user has the ability build multiple family trees. There is a Starter level for $35 for one year of limited records access, with upgrading for more records access.

MyHeritage www.myheritage.com   An Israel based genealogy research service, that changed directions by making resources available online. Members can build an extensive family tree. Now one of the largest in the worlds has 7 billion searchable records worldwide. Supporting 42 languages with 88 million users worldwide who you can connect with. Supports a mobile phone app.

TheGenealogistwww.thegenealogist.co.uk   A smaller lesser known British family history website strictly with access to records of England and Wales and other British Isles locales. They have four subscription levels.

GenealogyBank www.genealogybank.com  A genealogy website housing a database that contains over one billion digitized records from U.S. newspapers and historical documents for researching family history online. GenealogyBank’s digitized records collection includes more than 100,000 books and other historical publications, the U.S. Congressional Serial Set, the complete American State Papers, over 6,500 U.S. newspaper titles and a variety of other U.S. government and civilian documents published in all 50 states. This commercial site does not incorporate the building of family trees.

Fold3www.fold3.com   A commercial genealogy website housing a database specializing in historical military records primarily from the United States. It also has a large collection of United States documents, city directories, newspapers, and some UK military records.

This is another of a series of articles in which I show you the basics of searching for your family history, discussing the use of family records, public records, and online resources nationally and internationally, etc. The previous articles are now available on the Genealogy Section of this website.   See “Genealogy” in the menu options at the top of the web page.

Odds and Sods

The Scotsman
The Scotsman

Scone or scone? Our pronunciation depends on where we live

Kelburn Castle gets £1m boost
to carry on glamping

Here is Kelburn Castle 'before'

Meet the New Event Director for the Society

Darryl ToupkinWe’re pleased to announce that Darryl Toupkin of FieldWorks Events & Marketing, Inc. will be working with Games VP Paul Bell to produce the Phoenix Scottish Games.

Darryl currently puts on several themed run/walk events such as the Kilt Run, the ‘Kiss Me I’m Irish’ half marathon and the “12 K’s of Christmas”.

He has deep roots in the Phoenix market as an event producer and promoter including Tempe and Phoenix Oktoberfests, Thunderbird Balloon Classic, Chandler Ostrich Festival, MLB Cactus League Baseball, and several Celebrity Golf Tournaments.


Meet Our New Social Media Director

Allison HawnAllison Hawn, our new Social Media Director is a Scottish Games competitor, humor author, social worker, security specialist and adventure collector. She holds a Master's Degree in Communication, with focuses in Advocacy and Social Media Technologies, and is currently working her way towards a PhD in Communication.

She can be found on: Facebook: www.facebook.com/platypusringmaster Twitter: (@AllisonHawn) twitter.com/AllisonHawn Instagram: @AtillatheHawn www.instagram.com/atillathehawn

William H. Wallace - 1922-2017

Bill WallaceThe Caledonian Society has lost a great friend and supporter.

Bill Wallace died on March 3rd, nearly 95 years after he was born on a homestead ranch in Gilbert, Arizona. He lost his father when he was six, and they lost that ranch shortly after. Yet he retired at 62 financially independent.

Bill distinguished himself as an Eagle Scout, valedictorian of his senior class and as the fourth Arizonian to graduate from the United States Coast Guard Academy.

He married his college sweetheart, went to war, raised a family of five and dared himself to start his own business.

But this alone isnot his story. He built his life on hard work, keeping your word and showing kindness to others and will be remembered as a good, honest, kind man.

He is survived by Laurie Wallace Herrero, Susan Mann, Alison Swanson, Hamilton Wallace, Jim Wallace, nine grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.

Largely due to his extensive volunteerism - such as with our Society - Bill was inducted into the Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame in 2008. His plaque there reads:

Born Tempe, Arizona in 1922. Graduated U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1944. Served in WW II, discharged in 1947 as Lieutenant (JG). Began employment with Salt River Project; formed Wallace Industrial Controls in 1951; sold the company and retired in 1983. Originated and directed “Lunch with a Veteran” for Tempe Historical Society. Works with Arizona’s congressional delegation as advocate for youth and veterans. Co-founder of Desert Coast Guard Association and continues in the Coast Guard Academy Alumni Association and works with the admissions to represent the Coast Guard and recruit applicants to the Academy. Former Assistant Boy Scout leader; supports and teaches Sunday School teacher for Shepherd of the Hills Congregational Church. Docent and fundraiser for Tempe Historical Museum. Member of American Legion, Military Order of the World Wars.

Read Bill's eulogy, delivered by long-time friend Dan Germond

COMING EVENTS and Highland Games in Arizona and Nearby
Games Calendar compiled by Clan Campbell Society NA

June 8 Society Gathering at the ICC
June 24-25 San Diego Highland Games (CA)
July 8 (Saturday) Follow the Piper Pub Crawl (July Gathering)
July 13 No Gathering at the ICC
July 15-16 Arizona Highland Celtic Festival (Flagstaff)
August 5-6 Monterey Highland Games (CA)
August 10 Gathering at the ICC - Genealogy Presentation
November 3-5 Tucson Celtic Festival







Saturday 8th

Mill Avenue

Follow the Piper Pub Crawl


Thursday 10th


Genealogy Presentation


Saturday 16th


Kilts on Ice Curling Bonspiel


Thursday 12th


ScotsToberfest and AGM


Thursday 9th




Sunday 12th


RAF Memorial, Mesa City Cemetery


Thursday 14th


Annual Family Christmas Party

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. Payments received in November or December of 2016 include full year membership for 2017.

It’s easy to pay by credit card at our On-Line Shopping Cart - just jump to the Membership Page

Society Gatherings
Regular membership gatherings are usually held the second Thursday of each month at the Irish Cultural Center, 1106 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ. beginning at 6:30 pm. Please check our website for further details.

Caledonian Society Officers
President: Don Finch
Immediate Past President: Mark Clark
Past President: (2010 – 2012) Jean Latimer
Vice President Administration: Mark Pelletier
Vice President Games: Paul Bell
Vice President Membership : David McBee
Secretary Ginni Caldwell
Treasurer: Vicki Phegley
Trustee 1: Ian Warrander
Trustee 2: Thom von Hapsburg
Trustee 3: Dan Miller
Newsletter Editor:

Don Finch
Statutory Agent: Dan Miller
Chief Genealogist & Historian: Robert Wilbanks

A Word from our Advertisers

Kilt Rental USA

Len Wood
Bagpiper USB

Lois Wallace


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