January 2018  

In this Issue:

 Wine & Cheese Gathering  Burns Supper 2018
 Letter From the Editor  Book Review - Brilliant!
 Hogmanay  Society Officers
 The Society 2017 in Review  Coming Events - Valley & Nearby
 Research Your Scottish Ancestry  A Word from our Advertisers

Annual Wine and Cheese Gathering
Please RSVP by email to Don Finch with the number of
people attending the Wine & Cheese event.

Letter from the Editor, Don Finch

Dear fellow Caledonians:

Don Finch Match the greeting and their home country…

  1. Bonne Annee!                              A.  Spanish
  2. ! Felice Ano Nuevo!                     B.  Italian
  3. Glevilegt Nytt Ar!                         C.  Scots Gaelic
  4. Buon Anno!                                 D.  Icelandic
  5. Bliadhna Mhath Ùr                      E.  French


It has become a tradition to celebrate Hogmanay, the last day of the year and the first day of the New Year in the Scottish manner. It is normally followed by further celebration on the morning of New Year's Day (1st January) or, in some cases, 2nd January—a Scottish bank holiday. Learn more in an article below.

For the Scots here in the Valley, January is the beginning of our own silly season with our Wine & Cheese Gathering on January 11th, the Burns Supper on February 3rd, and the Phoenix Scottish Games on March 3rd and 4th.

Games V.P. Paul Bell is looking for volunteers and promises a great experience if you can help for a couple of hours and then enjoy the rest of the day at this 54th annual Gathering. Get his contact information under the ‘About Us’ tab on our home page at www.arizonascots.com

Mark your calendars for the Burns Supper on Saturday February 3rd. We’re joining up with The Lady Claire Lodge of the D.O.S. at the American Legion in Chandler to present an authentic Burns Supper at an affordable price. Tickets are a very reasonable $35.00 p.p. and are only available on-line at shop.arizonascots.com/  No tickets will be sold at the door.

Finally, here’s a salutation you’ll probably hear in the USA… ‘Happy New Year!”  On behalf of the CSA Board of Directors, best wishes to you and your family for a healthy and happy 2018.



From metro.co.uk

What is Hogmanay? New Year’s Eve may be an important tradition for some, but for the Scots, something much bigger goes down: Hogmanay.

Photo: thesun.co.uk

The people of Scotland spend three days celebrating the biggest event in their festive calendar. Whiskey is drunk, stuff gets set on fire, and the Scots wake up on 2 January to their hangover cure of choice, Irn Bru and a steak pie.

What is it?

Hogmanay is the Scottish term for New Year’s Eve celebrations. There’s no clear origin for the word – some say it’s a corrupt version of the Greek words for ‘holy month’. Others trace the word’s roots  to 17th century French, where hoguinané translates as ‘last day of the year, new year’s gift’. The celebration itself has been around for centuries.

When did it start?

Hogmanay has Viking origins. When Norse invaders celebrated the winter solstice, they’d have wild parties in late December. The parties started including elements of the Gaelic Samhain winter festival, celebrating the start of winter, and Yule. Now the celebration is a mix of these influences.

Photo: thescottishsun.co.uk

Why is it such a massive event?

Until pretty recently, the Scots didn’t do Christmas – the Protestant Reformation effectively banned the holiday for 400 years. Christmas Day wasn’t a public holiday in Scotland until 1958, and Boxing Day wasn’t one until 1974. As a result, family get-togethers went down during Hogmanay instead.

How is it different from other New Year’s celebrations?

It’s longer The celebration begins on New Year’s Eve but carries on until 2 January, which is a public holiday in Scotland.

How is Hogmanay celebrated?

As well as partying, the Scots observe a number of traditions. The most well-known is first-footing, where the first person to enter the house brings gifts such as food or coal.

First-footing traditionally affects the household’s fortunes for the next year – ideally, the first-footer is a tall, dark man, so if your only option is a short blonde woman, you’re in trouble. Other traditions include cleaning the house before the start of Hogmanay and singing Auld Lang Syne – if you don’t know the words, they’re here.
Photo: thescottishsun.co.uk

Are there any big events?

Edinburgh’s Hogmanay is the one to be at – a massive torchlit parade on December 30 kicks off the celebration, which includes a fireworks display, music performances and a crowd from over 60 different countries.

Isn’t late December in Scotland going to bring awful weather for a party?

In short, yes. Severe weather caused parties in 2003 and 2006 to be stopped.
This year, there will be scattered showers, but it shouldn’t be too cold.

Do people have weird Hogmanay traditions?

The locals of Stonehaven, near Aberdeen, make balls of chicken wire, paper and rags, set them on fire, and swing them around. As you do.

The Stoats Loony Dook event takes place at South Queensferry – thousands of Dookers will march the length of the high street before plunging themselves into the River Forth to raise money for charity.

SStoats Loony Dookers
Photo: wikipedia.com

In Kirkwall, the ‘Ba Game’, a massive version of street football that can last anything between four minutes and five hours, takes place – and can feature as many as 350 players.

How do I celebrate Hogmanay properly?

There’s no correct way to celebrate Hogmanay, but many Scots will have a meal with family and/or friends, drink plenty of whiskey to toast the new year, then have a steak pie for dinner the following day.

Our Year 2017 in Review

Eric Wells, President of Fuil Celtic, at their Burns Supper- Jan 21, 2017
Agenda for the CSA February Gathering at the ICC
Elizabeth Reich and dancers from her Arizona Academy of Highland Dance
Heather MacDonald, ASU Professor and athlete speaks on Highland Athletics
The flags represent the 30 home states & countries of our competitors
New at the March 2017 Games -
String 'Em Bluegrass Band
Trophies for the Phoenix Open Higland Dance Championships
Door-to-door delivery service for the Pipe Band Championship trophies
Massed Pipe Bands at the Closing Ceremonies
Celebrating Tartan Day at the State Capitol with Senator Kavanagh and Representative Townsend
The April 6th Tartan Day Party continued at the George & Dragon Pub
We held our Celtic Book Fair featuring three regional authors in June
Children's author Toni Sarcinella receives her CSA member badge
Tucson-based history and mystery writer Jude Johnson
Ayrshire native and now Chandler-based author Ian Lundy
September Gathering at Lochiel Brewery in Mesa
Scotstoberfest new member installation ceremony at Haus Murphy's
Chanteuse Sarah Noble and back-up singer Flora at the Christmas Party


Book Review

Brilliant! Scottish Inventors, Innovators, Scientists and Engineers Who Changed the World
By Andrew G. Paterson

If you have a passion for, or just a passing interest in, the achievements of Scots, this book is for you! Published on 31 August 2017 by Austin Macauley, Brilliant! concisely details the accomplishments of 867 Scots and their thousands of inventions, innovations, scientific discoveries and engineering feats.

Brilliant!Covering more than 50 fields of endeavour - including electronics, medicine, health, biology, computing, robotics, banking, aeronautics, physics, construction, architecture, entertainment, sport, and lots, lots more - this book is definitely not just a mere jingoistic tea towel list. The 867 headlined names were all born in Scotland or have a confirmed Scottish-born parent or grandparent, and for readers with no Scottish connection Brilliant! includes thousands of non-Scottish pioneers from around the world who also contributed to the development of the landmark achievements noted in this book.

With more than 2,500 references, Brilliant! has been carefully researched over many years and provides a one-stop resource of Scottish achievements that positively impacted life in Britain, the United States of America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

This book is available from the publishers, Austin Macauley, as well as Amazon, Waterstones, Book Depository, Booktopia, and other physical and internet book stores.

Burns Supper - 2018

Burns Supper 2018

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

January 11 Monthly Gathering at the ICC
January 21 CSA Board Meeting - 3 PM
February 3 Burns Supper (Joint CSA and DOS)
February 8 Monthly Gathering at the ICC - TBD
February 17/18 Queen Mary Scottish Festival (Long Beach CA)
March 3/4 Phoenix Scottish Games HERE

Research Your Scottish Ancestry

RObert WilbanksUpcoming Genealogy Events for 2018

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

A few months ago, I talked about the importance of “Networking and Ongoing Learning”. As you progress in your genealogy, discovering new and interesting facets of your family history, you will find that there is always something more to learn about the research process and resources available.

Finding others with common research interests, but with more practical experience, is an important, and fun, aspect to genealogy.

Whether it is finding a distant cousin who has made more progress in the researching of your common family tree, or learning from a record type expert, or research locality expert, networking with others to learn more is just one aspect of becoming a more skilled researcher.

The other key aspect, is just straight forward genealogy education. Getting out there and learning more. Self-learning and continuing education is very low cost and readily available in a variety of formats and locations.

Even though you may not have Arizona ancestry, local genealogy societies across the state are a great place to network, learning from others, and attend meetings, and learn from great presenters on a variety of topics. With the beginning of a new year, I thought I would let you know of a variety of highly significant genealogy conferences and seminars coming up in the next few months hosted by various Arizona genealogy societies. Don’t hesitate to take the time to go out and learn more. Here are just a few events coming in January through March.

The Pinal County Genealogists (www.pinalctyazgen.com), will be hosting their annual conference, 2018 Genealogy Workshop, on Saturday, January 27th in Casa Grande. Registration is now open and the 62 page syllabus of speakers, topics and handouts, is now available as a downloadable PDF.

At a Free Event, the Tucson Family History Center will be hosting their 2018 Family History Fair on Saturday, February 3, with 35 classes. Visit their website for more details. (www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Tucson_Arizona_Family_History_Center)

The Mesa FamilySearch Library (www.mesarfhc.org), features many on-site classes, online classes and webinars. They also host the largest annual multi-track all day genealogy conference in Arizona, held every October at ASU; and it is Free. If you missed this conference, you have a chance to see the same speakers and topics in two Free mini-Conferences; one in the East Valley and one in the West Valley. The East Valley mini-Conference will be Saturday, February 10th at the ASU Polytechnic Campus LDS Institute building on Innovation Way out by the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. The West Valley location and date have not yet been set; likely a Saturday in March. Visit the website frequently to watch for announcements and registration information.

The West Valley Genealogical Society (azwvgs.org) is the largest genealogy society in Arizona and operates its own genealogy library with over 4000 square feet of books and more, plus access to a wide variety of subscription based genealogy databases. In addition to their monthly meetings, the Library provides a number of “How-to” genealogy classes on a variety of topics. Their annual seminar on February 17, 2018 will feature Cyndi Ingalls of Cyndi’s List fame (www.cyndislist.com). A website that sorts and organizes all known genealogy websites on the internet, currently with over 336 thousand web links in 220 categories.

The Green Valley Genealogical Society, south of Tucson, (azgvgs.org) will be featuring Gena Philibert-Ortega at the 2018 Seminar on February 17th. She is a world noted speaker, author and editor, on various subjects involving genealogy, women’s studies and social history.

The Pima County Genealogy Society, in Tucson, (azpimagensoc.org) is hosting a special DNA Seminar by CeCe Moore, the genetic genealogy consultant for Dr. Louis Gates Jr. and the PBS TV series “Finding Your Roots”. This seminar will be Saturday, March 10, 2018 in Tucson. Visit the website for details and registration information.

The Family History Society of Arizona (fhsa.org) has seven chapters around the valley that each meet a different day of the month. You could theoretically attend all seven meetings monthly. Their annual meeting will be March 24th and will feature highly noted Thomas W. Jones, a noted speaker and an award-winning writer, and editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, a very highly noted publication.

There are many other Arizona genealogy groups, historical and heritage societies that you can find through the Arizona Genealogical Advisory Board (AzGAB) (azgab.com), promoting genealogy and history by addressing the educational needs and interests of Arizona’s genealogical community through cooperation by the various groups and individuals. They have an impressive calendar of genealogy events around Arizona. They will be kicking off celebrating 2018 as their 30th year at their own Seminar in the afternoon of February 10th in Mesa. They will be hosting nationally known Paula Stuart Warren, author, speaker, consultant, specialist in Midwestern research, major U.S. repositories, Native American genealogy, and more.

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.

Membership Renewal Reminder

Membership Special for New Members joining for 2018:
- - $25.00 single and $40.00 Family (at the same address)

It's easy - just jump to the Membership Page for the form.
And you can pay by Credit Card at our On-Line Store descibed at the left.

Society Gatherings
Regular membership gatherings are usually held the second Thursday of each month, many at the Irish Cultural Center, 1106 N. Central Ave., Phoenix - others around the Valley - usually 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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