St. Louis Games & Festival set
Students in several school districts in the St. Louis area will
experience the sights and sounds of the Scottish Highlands before they
appear on October 8 and 9 at the 4th Annual St. Louis Scottish Games &
Cultural Festival in Forest Park, Missouri. Just days before the
event, several performers scheduled to appear at the Games will stage
workshops and presentations, free of charge, to students in the St.
Louis Public Schools, the Lindbergh School District, and the
Ferguson-Florissant School District, among others. Those performers
will be: Brian McNeill, head of Scottish music at the Royal Scottish
Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow; Scottish-born fiddler John
Taylor, who now makes his home in California; Edinburgh-born folk
singer and guitarist Ed Miller, host of Folkways, a popular and
long-running live music show in Austin, Texas; Jeff Campbell, a former
special educator and kindergarten teacher, will return as a
seanachaidh (SHAN-a-key, Gaelic for a Celtic historian, record keeper
and teller of tales). Dressed in the ancient Highland kilt, Campbell
creates a living history presentation based on his deep knowledge of
Scottish history, customs, poetry and personalities.
Archie and Ramona Mason, Native
Americans from Tulsa, Oklahoma, who perform and lecture on the
historical connections between American Indians and Scottish-Americans
will also present programs. A member of the Osage and Cherokee
tribes, Archie is a retiree of the public school system and higher
education in Oklahoma. He has served on several U.S. government
commissions on Indian education and cultural affairs. Ramona, a
member of the Muscogee Creek tribe, was designated 2003 Indian Woman
of the Year.
The non-profit event will kick off
Friday evening, October 8, with a torchlight ceremony and a Calling of
the Scottish clans, followed by a ceilidh (KAY-lee). Saturday’s
events will include ancient Scottish athletic contests, bagpipe and
Highland dance competitions, musical and other performing artists,
Scottish history and storytelling, Scottish foods and crafts, sheepdog
herding demonstrations, an exhibit of Highland cattle, birds of prey,
a British car show, and several children’s activities.
The exact location in Forest Park
will be on Lindell Boulevard at DeBaliviere, just east of the Missouri
History Museum. Admission prices will vary, with two-day packages and
special rates for families. Visitors may bring their own lawn chairs
for Friday evening’s torchlight ceremony. Pets will not be allowed on
the site. For more information, call 314-821-1286, or visit <www.stlouis-scottishgames.com>.
Reuben Oliver (R.O.) Grant, a
subscriber and admirer of The Family Tree, died April 4, 2004, at his
home in Thomasville, Georgia. He often spoke of wanting to move to
Moultrie, Georgia, a town he always enjoyed visiting. R.O. was a true
Scotsman; his mother was Helen MacKenzie and his father was Reuben
Oliver Grant, Sr. He was born in West Monroe, Louisiana, on January
12, 1914, and he worked as an accountant for many years. R.O. always
drove a comfortable car, and he loved to travel. True to his Scots
heritage, he loved seeing what was over the next hill. He lived for
many years in Texas, in the Houston area and later in Wichita Falls.
R.O. was an avid hunter and fisherman; he preferred his cabin in the
Texas Piney Woods to living in town. In later years, he moved to
Thomasville to live with his brother Ralph Gordon Grant, who survives
him, along with two nieces, Peggy and Beth, and many cousins. R.O. is
buried in Antioch Cemetery, Ouachita Parish, Louisiana, in the Grant
family plot, where his father, grandfather Reuben Henry Grant,
great-grandfather William Miles Grant, and many other family members
also are buried.
R.O. was very modest and wanted no obituaries, so this is our
remembrance of a very special member of our family. Signed Coleen
Jeffrey C. Blue, a descendent of the
River Daniel Blues and a brother of Sept of Blue member Jerry Blue,
died on March 3, 2004 and was buried in Culdee Church cemetery. Mary
Alice Blue Golby, M.D., a descendent of the River Daniel Blues and a
sister of sept member H. Nelson Blue, died at her home in Durham,
North Carolina on April 4, 2004 and was buried at Eureka Church
cemetery. Marion M. Edmonds, husband of Edith C. Edmonds, a member of
Sept of Blue, died in Greensboro, North Carolina on January 9, 2004.
Dale F. Baird, Sir, President
of Clan Baird Society Worldwide sadly announces the passing of Frances
Baird on April 29, 2004, who died quietly with dignity, which was her
usual style, after enduring a 12-year period of paralysis due to
Guilliam Barre Syndrome. Fortunately for visitors, she remained
cheerful to the very end. Frances and her husband, Byron, petitioned
the Lord Lyon of Scotland for permission to organize an association
that would honor the name of Baird. In 1976, permission was granted
and the first organizational meeting of Bairds was held at the
Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.
Clan Baird became one of the Clans
to have a stone from their ancestral lands placed in the cairn at
Grandfather Mountain honoring the founding Clans. After her husband’s
death, Frances assumed the Title of Convener and continued to lead the
membership from a humble beginning of 46 members to a vibrant
association of over 500 members from New Zealand to Nova Scotia, and
Scotland to North America. Frances was always a leader. In the July
16, 1984 issue of The Ashville Citizen, it was reported: “For the
first time in the 29-year history of the Grandfather Mountain Highland
Games, two women clan leaders officially led their clansmen here
Sunday. Thousands witnessed the break in tradition that allowed Anne
Shirey, President of Clan Hay and Mrs. Byron O. Baird, Convener of The
Baird Family Society, to march in the ceremony that always stirs
Scottish pride and brings a tear to the eye.” Frances spent the
better part of her life in being active in “All Things Scottish.” She
was vice president of the Orlando Scottish American Society, a council
member of the Orlando Scottish Highland Games, and in 1981 she was
honored as Distinguished Guest of the Games.
Frances Baird was a lovely personal
friend and a great friend of The Odom Library and The Family Tree.
She was with us at Scottish Weekend just days before she was stricken
with Guilliam Barre...and set an example of grace, dignity and courage
that will be impossible to emulate.
Madam Morag MacDougall is Chief
of Clan MacDougall
From the Court of the Lord Lyon’s Office in Edinburgh an announcement
has been made that Madam Morag MacDougall of MacDougall has been
recognized as the Chief of Clan MacDougall and is free to use that
title. The previous Chief, Madam Coline H. E. MacDougall of
MacDougall, died on May 5, 1990, at age 85 years. Her niece, who
became the 31st hereditary Chief of the Clan in 1991, has succeeded
her. The new Chief’s daughter has inherited the ancient title of Maid
Thanks to The Tartan, Clan MacDougall Society, Inc., PO Box 1279,
Frankfort, KY 40602-1279.
Check out online rumors!!!
All of us who know that from time to time stories appear on the
Internet that seem either too good to be true or is something that
can upset the apple cart. We now have help. According to the Los
Angeles Westside Genealogical Society (LAWGS) April 2004 issue,
there is a way to check out forwarded messages or online rumors.
One that has been circulating is a rumor about Family Tree Maker’s
Check it out at <http://www.truthorfiction.com/rumors/f/familytreemaker9.htm>.
The site heading reads: Family Tree Maker Version 9.0 Genealogy
Software is Spyware - Fiction! That’s the place to find for
debunking rumors. You can check out other rumors by looking in <http://www.truthorfiction.com>.
Thanks to YGGS Family Finders, Yucaipa Valley Genealogical Society,
Inc., PO Box 32, Yucaipa, CA 92399-0032.
Sleuthing done with useful
night vision tip
Try using a pair of night vision clip-on glasses when looking at
microfilm or microfilm printouts that are not clear. (I use the
kind with the yellow lens - you can also purchase them as just a
regular pair of glasses.) I tried my husband’s this morning and
found another ancestor listed on a ship list that is in very bad
Submitted by Marge Clark and reprinted from Ancestry.com, Quick Tip,
March 19, 2004. Source: WAGS Newsletter, Whittier Area Genealogical
Society, PO Box 4367, Los Angeles County, Whittier, CA 90607-4367.
MA pipe band chooses Shaw
The Boroughs Fire Brigade Pipes and Drums of Massachusetts has
chosen the Farquhar Shaw tartan for its uniforms. It also uses the
motto Fide et Fortitudine, Faith and Fortitude, fitting because
these are virtues required of firemen and policemen, apt for this
organization that includes both groups. The tartan was chosen
because it consists of red, representing the fire department; blue,
representing the police; and green, for safety.
The unit was formed in 2001, after
a group of Southborough firefighters discussed learning to play the
bagpipes. Ben Ethridge of Southborough agreed to give the small
group chanter lessons. An invitation was extended to local fire
departments, and about a dozen members of the Southborough Fire
Department, Marlborough Fire Department, Marlborough Police
Department, and the Ashland Fire Department showed interest.
Unfortunately, not all of the interested could commit to the band,
and when the bagpipes were purchased in 2002, there were some left
A call was put out to other local
fire departments, and soon several members of the Hudson Fire
Department formed the majority of the band’s drum section. Ken
McLeod began lessons for the sections in the summer of 2002 and
interest developed in other local departments. The pipes instructor
announced that he had brought them as far as he felt capable and
suggested hiring a more advanced instructor, Cindy Carrancho,
assisted by Lyn Tasso, who took on training the newer pipers. It was
then time to buy uniforms and raise funds for lessons and
equipment. That was when the decision was made to buy the Shaw
tartan. By late 2002 various members were performing solo at local
events and on Memorial Day 2003, the piping section had their first
performance in Ashland. It is anticipated that the full band will
be performing soon throughout the area. You might enjoy the band’s
web site at <http://www.boroughsfirebrigade.org.>
Thanks to An Biodag (The Dagger), Quarterly Newsletter of the Clan
Shaw Society, 3031 Appomattox Avenue #102, Olney, MD 20832.
Tax records provide aids in
Bryan L. Mulcahy, Reference Librarian, Fort Myers-Lee County
Library, 2050 Central Avenue, Fort Myers, FL 33901-3917. Tax
records allows the researcher to locate a person in a particular
place at a given time, both before census records are available and
for periods between the federal population censuses. A careful
reading of tax lists over a period of years may also reveal dates of
settlement and removal, marriages and deaths, approximate ages, and
family relationships. One of the earliest forms of taxation in
Colonial America was the quitrent. Landowners were required to pay
a quitrent to the Crown or the proprietor. In reality, this was a
tax on real property. In some instances, the quitrent was nominal
and amounted only to a token of loyalty to the colonial government.
In other instances, a substantial
tax in the form of money was due. Records known as rent rolls and
debt books were kept. Information compiled in these rolls and books
may include the name of the person, number of acres taxed, name and
location of the tract, amount of the annual rent, and date of the
most recent survey. Early colonial and state tax lists consisted of
taxes on people, on land, and taxes on personal property which was
on possessions versus land. Taxes on people were also known under
headings such as poll taxes, capitation taxes, or head taxes. The
poll tax was a fixed tax on white males and slaves. Taxes on land
were generally applied to include buildings and other improvements
although they were seldom specifically listed. The tax could be
based on the number acres or on the value of the land depending on
the circumstances existing in the jurisdiction.
Personal property taxes applied
primarily to horses, cattle, and tools of the various trades.
Sometimes luxury items such as plates, jewelry, and pleasure
vehicles were also included. Tax lists, including names of taxpayers
with their taxable property, were compiled by counties and within a
county by districts headed by militia captains, constables, or other
public officials. Older tax records can be found in state archives,
state libraries or county courthouses. Access may depend on the
time period being searched and having the exact name and time of
residence within a given jurisdiction.
The Journal of Scotch-Irish Studies presents help
From: Richard K. MacMaster
4130 NW 19th Place Gainesville FL 32605-3528
A Guide to Scotch-Irish Genealogy in Ulster and America by Linda
Merle is one of the articles in The Journal of Scotch-Irish Studies,
Fall 2003 issue, which has just been published. Her fifty-page
“Towards a Methodology of Scotch-Irish Genealogical Research”
scusses many kinds of sources for research and includes an extensive
The American branch of Dunbar McMaster and Company, staffed
entirely by emigrants from Ulster, is studied by Marilyn Cohen of
Montclair State University in “From Gilford, County Down, to
Greenwich, New York: Geographical Mobility of Labor and Capital in
the Ulster Linen Industry, 1880-1920.”
Other articles in the new issue deal with “Two Scotch-Irish Families
of Industrial California,” and “Ulster Emigrants in Early Industrial
America,” a suggestion for research on Ulster-born textile workers
in Baltimore and Philadelphia.
Joseph McClenachan traced the career of “A Controversial Cleric: The
Reverend William McClenachan,” who served churches in Maine,
Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Maryland between 1734 and 1765.
Two other articles deal with language. Michael Montgomery of the
University of South Carolina investigated letters written by
emigrants in “Emigrants from Ulster Meet the Observer’s Paradox: A
Typology of Emigrant Letter Writers” and Anita Puckett of the Center
for Ulster Migrations, Cultures, and Societies at Virginia Tech used
correspondence of the William Preston family in “Towards a
Linguistic Anthropological Understanding of Early Scotch-Irish
Copies of The Journal of Scotch-Irish Studies can be ordered from
The Center for Scotch-Irish Studies, P.O. Box 71, Glenolden, PA
19036-0071 at $22 for individuals and $15 for libraries and
educational institutions, plus $2.50 postage and handling.