Wednesday, May 07, 2008


First published in GENEALOGY GEMS: NEWS FROM THE FORT WAYNE LIBRARY, No. 49, March 31, 2008

Scottish Roots
by Steven W. Myers
Researchers with any hint of Scottish heritage in their background will find it useful to become familiar with the plethora of genealogical reference books produced by the indefatigable David Dobson. Over the last 25 years, he has combed unusual printed sources, newspaper archives and manuscript collections looking for records that provide linkages between the Scottish diaspora and individual Scottish
emigrants and specific places in Scotland.

Conducting an author search for David Dobson in the online catalog of Genealogy Center print publications yields 71 items that represent the fruits of these labors thus far. The wide range of titles reflects the scope of his efforts, from his "Directory of Scots Banished to the American Plantations, 1650-1775" to "The French and Indian War from Scottish Sources." Most of his work focuses on the late 16th to early 19th centuries, supplying the names of specific individuals with
links, not just to Colonial America, but to Canada, the West Indies, Latin America, Scandinavia, Poland, Russia, the Baltic States and Australasia, among others. Some volumes focus on links with specific places in America, such as "Scots on the Chesapeake, 1607-1830." Others feature linkages with specific areas in Scotland, such as his multi-volume "Scottish Highlanders on the Eve of the Great Migration,
1725-1775," each volume covering a different county. Dobson also pays significant attention to his Irish cousins with his two series "Scots-Irish Links, 1575-1725" and "Irish Emigrants in North America," each in six parts. Many, but not all, of these volumes are also searchable online at

For those not lucky enough to find their ancestor on a passenger list, Dobson has also compiled several volumes listing voyages of specific ships to America. These volumes could supply a valuable clue in researching family origins, and they include "Transatlantic Voyages, 1600-1699," "Ships from Scotland to America, 1628-1828" (3 vols.), "Ships from Scotland to North America, 1830-1860," and "Ships from Ireland to Early America, 1623-1850." In addition, Dobson recently produced an
important research guide titled "Searching for Scotch-Irish Roots in Scottish Records, 1600-1750." This valuable tool identifies source material in Scottish archives that could help genealogists of Scotch-Irish descent locate their family's place of origin in Scotland. Researchers would benefit from examining Dobson's many
existing volumes, as well as keeping an eye out for his regular additions to our online catalog (available at

Publishing Note:

This electronic newsletter is published by the Allen County Public Library's Genealogy Center, and is intended to enlighten readers about genealogical research methods as well as inform them about the vast resources of the Allen County Public Library. We welcome the wide distribution of this newsletter and encourage readers to forward it to their friends and societies. All precautions have been made to avoid errors. However, the publisher does not assume any liability to any party for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions, no matter the cause.

To subscribe to "Genealogy Gems," simply use your browser to go to the website: www.GenealogyCenter.Info. Scroll down toward the bottom of the first screen where it says, "Enter Your Email Address to Subscribe to "Genealogy Gems." Enter your email address in the yellow box and
click on "Subscribe." You will be notified with a confirmation email.

Curt Witcher, editor pro-tem

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