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History Pre-confederation (to 1867)

Les Écossais

The Pioneer Scots of Lower Canada, 1763-1855

by (author) Lucille H. Campey

Dundurn Press
Initial publish date
Jun 2006
Pre-Confederation (to 1867), Emigration & Immigration, Genealogy & Heraldry
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    Publish Date
    Jun 2006
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    Jun 2006
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This is the first fully documented account, produced in modern times, of the migration of Scots to Lower Canada. Scots were in the forefront of the early influx of British settlers, which began in the late eighteenth century. John Nairne and Malcolm Fraser were two of the first Highlanders to make their mark on the province, arriving at La Malbaie soon after the Treaty of Paris in 1763. By the early 1800s many Scottish settlements had been formed along the north side of the Ottawa River, in the Chateauguay Valley to the southwest of Montreal, and in the Gaspe region. Then, as economic conditions in the Highlands and Islands deteriorated by the late 1820s, large numbers of Hebridean crofters settled in the Eastern Townships. The first group came from Arran and the later arrivals from Lewis.

Les Ecossais were proud of their Scottish traditions and customs, those living reminders of the old country which had been left behind. In the end they became assimilated into Quebec’s French-speaking society, but along the way they had a huge impact on the province’s early development. How were les Ecossais regarded by their French neighbours? Were they successful pioneers? In her book, Lucille H. Campey assesses their impact as she unravels their story. Drawing from a wide range of fascinating sources, she considers the process of settlement and the harsh realities of life in the New World. She explains how Quebec province came to acquire its distinctive Scottish communities and offers new insights on their experiences and achievements.

About the author

Ottawa-born Dr. Lucille Campey is a well-known writer and historian who began her career as a scientist and computer specialist, having obtained a degree in chemistry from Ottawa University. In 1967 she moved to England, where she gained a masters degree at Leeds University based on a study of English medieval settlement patterns. Inspired by interest in her Nova Scotia–born father’s Scottish roots and love of history, she studied Scottish emigration to Canada and was subsequently awarded a doctorate at Aberdeen University. Campey is the author of eight books on early Scottish emigration to Canada. More recently, Lucille has turned her attention to English emigration to Canada with her ninth book, Planters, Paupers and Pioneers. She lives near Salisbury in Wiltshire, England.

Lucille H. Campey's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"Campey's volumes are an invaluable resource for the historian or genealogist. They are accessible, with many illustrations and useful maps."

- Elizabeth Ritchie, University of Guelph, International Review of Scottish Studies

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