Jim McKane has reworked the Scotch-Irish section of the Ulster Heritage main website. There will be a growing collection of essays found there on the Scotch-Irish. Now it will be done a little differently than other Scotch-Irish websites. We are going to include many topics outside of the typical stereotypical literature on the group commonly called the Scotch-Irish.
That term, 'Scotch-Irish' is just an older way of writing 'Scots-Irish' and the two are totally interchangeable and both are correct. One of these themes will be the large number of Highland Scots that migrated to Ulster and are part of the Scotch-Irish. Technically these families exist outside of the dictionary definition of being Scotch-Irish. The norm is to define Scotch-Irish as descendants of the Lowland Plantation Scots that settled in Ulster circa 1607 to 1700 and especially those that then migrated to the Colonial backsettlements.
Scotch-Irish history is very poorly represented, one could even say it is marginalized by many writers and historians. For example Aryshire and Gallowayshire, to districts from where many Plantation Scots originated, were also part of Gaelic Scotland. The so called Highland/Lowland divide does not really apply to the Scottish Lowland western seaboard. Gaelic and Cymreig Celts dominated in the western Lowlands of Scotland. As late as the early 1500s the leading man of letters from southern Aryshire, Walter Kennedy, wrote in Gaelic and in fact ridiculed the increasing use of English in the Lowlands.
Real history is always way more complex and interesting than the variety that makes it into the history books. One reason is the Celtic fringe of the British Isles has really never had a history written from its perspective. London and the home counties dominate the writing of British history. The people and societies of southwest Scotland rarely have their history told in any great detail.
We hope to in our own small way correct this. To see the new Scotch-Irish section of the Ulster Heritage website, just go to the site www.ulsterheritage.com
and click on the Scotch-Irish link from the left hand menu.