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Nineteenth-century emigration from Scotland to the U.S. was the continuation of a process that had its roots in the 17th century. Unlike the majority of European emigrants, who represented surplus rural workers from an agrarian society, the Scottish emigrants of the Victorian period were skilled, educated workers from urban industrial backgrounds whose expertise was in great demand in the rapidly industrializing cities of North America. Between 1825 and 1838, more than 60,000 emigrants left Scotland bound for North America; from 1840 to 1853, nearly 30,000 emigrated from there; and in 1881 alone, 38,000 left for the U.S. and 3,000 left for Canada, mostly via Greenock.
In this context, we are pleased to publish the fifth installment in David Dobson's Scots in the USA and Canada, 1825-1875, a series designed to compensate for the lack of official Scottish passenger lists to North America during the 19th century (see also Part One, Part Two, Part Three, and Part Four). Containing about 1,800 sketches not found in the prior books, Part Five brings the total number of descriptions of the Scottish men and women and their families who were part of this great exodus to about 8,000.
Dr. Dobson's findings come from primary sources in Scotland and North America. Parts One and Two derive from Scottish newspapers as well as from a handful of documents in the National Archives of Scotland. Part Three is based on the records of the Scottish Register of Sasines and Register of Deeds, as well as newspapers, found in the National Archives of Scotland in Edinburgh. Part Four is based on documents housed at the National Archives of Canada in Ottawa, the Public Archives of Nova Scotia in Halifax, and a number of libraries and archives in Scotland. The data found in Part Five derives from newspapers and other documents in the National Archives of Scotland in Edinburgh. Researchers will find a list of references at the back of each book.
Dr. Dobson has arranged these expatriates alphabetically in each Part and, while the descriptions vary, he gives the individual's full name, place of residence in North America (country, state/province, or city), an identifying date, and the source of the information. In addition, many of the entries indicate the individual's date of birth, father's name and occupation or place of residence, spouse, or the name of the vessel upon which he or she arrived.