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Scottish Emigration to Colonial America – An Overview

by Familia Ulster Genealogical Review: No. 18, 2002


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by David Dobson

"THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY was a period of change and continuity for Scotland’s external links. The Union of the Crowns of Scotland and England in 1603 led to a development of social and economic links between the two countries and a relative decline of traditional links with countries such as France and the Netherlands.

Hitherto the main destinations of Scottish exports and emigrants had been eastwards towards Scandinavia, the Baltic and the Netherlands; hereafter the emphasis, particularly of emigration, would be westwards – initially with Ireland, specifically Ulster, and increasingly with the American colonies."

This article examines Scottish emigration to Colonial America in the 17th and 18th centuries.