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Scottish Voices From the West: Oral History Project

The purpose of the Centre's oral history project, "Scottish Voices From the West," is to build a resource for the study of the Scots in British Columbia of whom little has been written despite their disproportionate influence on the  province. The interviews contain valuable material that provides information on the stories of Scots who came to British Columbia. Many of the interviews also shed light on how immigrant populations create memories of their land of origin while negotiating their way in a new environment. The project is an example of "public history": history written by the people who lived it.

The "Scottish Voices From the West" Oral History Project is currently available at: http://content.lib.sfu.ca/cdm/search/collection/soh. The project is being continually updated, so check back often.

"Scottish Voices From the West" has proceeded in two stages:

Phase I:
From 2003-2004, then Co-ordinator of Scottish Studies, Harry McGrath, and community members Ron and Eileen Sutherland embarked on a project of interviewing Scottish immigrants to British Columbia and individuals whose families emigrated to BC from Scotland some time ago. They collected interviews on cassette tapes.

Phase 2:
In 2010, the Centre for Scottish Studies obtained a grant from SFU Library's Scholarly Digitization Fund  <http://www.lib.sfu.ca/collections/digitization-fund> to digitize these interviews. When this process is complete, the interviews will be eventually form part of the Library's "Multicultural Canada" site <http://www.multiculturalcanada.ca >.

Community volunteers Ron Sutherland and Rex Davidson are currently conducting a new series of interviews. These are "born digital."

The Phase I interviews include:

Cilla Bachop, St. Andrew’s and Caledonian Society
James Bain, Chief, Sons of Scotland
James Barrie, Piping Teacher and Recording Engineer
Strachan Birney, Senior Banking Executive
Dorothy Brown, Curator, British Columbia Golf Museum
Iona Campagnolo, Lieutenant Governor, Province of British Columbia
Glen Clark, Senior Executive, Pattison Group of Companies and Former BC Premier
Edward Gibson, Cultural Geographer
Charles Humphries, Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Alma Lee, Artistic Director, Vancouver Writers Festival
Terry Lee, Pipe Major, SFU Pipe Band
Jack Lee, Piper
Murdo MacIver, Gaelic Society
Donald MacKay, Senior Executive, Empire Shipping
Marjorie MacLean, Principal, Vancouver Oral Centre
Ron MacLeod, Former Director-General of Pacific and Freshwater Fisheries
Isabel MacPherson, Various Scottish organizations
Mary Macaree, Teacher-Librarian and co-author of several books on hiking
Ian Mason, President Burns Club of Vancouver
Mary Morrison, Highland Association of Vancouver
Hamish and Isla Robertson, Moray, Nairn and Banff Association
Ian Ross, Professor Emeritus UBC, authority on Adam Smith
Lew Ross, Masters Champion, Highland Games Heavy Events
James Russell, Professor Emeritus UBC, Classical Studies scholar and archaeologist
Simon Scott, President, Arthur Erickson House and Garden Foundation
James Troy, Piping Teacher