Scots began settling in North America in the earliest colonial days. They were heavily involved in the Great Lakes region's major industries, as these evolved from fur trade to farming and lumbering to industry. From early settlement to the industrial revolution, Scots brought to the state a pioneer spirit and an extraordinary level of education. Though rendered almost invisible both by clustering under the umbrella of the British Commonwealth and by the fact that few Scottish traditions are considered whatsoever foreign, ethnic, or exotic, Scottish influences run deep in Michigan history and culture. From ice hockey to industry, much of what represents Michigan has roots that were embedded in Scotland. Although Alan T. Forrester notes that symbolic Scottish ethnicity-Highland Games, Scottish Festivals, and Burns Night Suppers-is practically the only obvious relic of Scottish heritage in Michigan, he illuminates how much more of this legacy is a part of this state.
Scots in Michigan
Michigan State University Press