How the Scots hit the New Year running . . .

Monday, Jan. 24: With Robbie Burns Day looming, Our Hero chats about Scots with Sheila Rogers on The Next Chapter, CBC One, 1 p.m.

Tuesday, Feb. 8: Toronto Reference Library. 1-3 p.m

Saturday, Feb. 12: Winnipeg, Manitoba Historical Society. Featured speaker, 46th annual Sir John A. Macdonald dinner.

Thursday, Feb. 17. Markham. U of T Lecture Series. 1 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 17. Toronto, St. Andrews Society. 8 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 19. Toronto, Royal Scottish Country Dance Society. Tartan Ball, guest of honour.

Wednesday, Feb. 23. Oakville. U of T Lecture Series. 1 p.m.

Friday, March 4. Toronto. U of T Lecture Series, 1 p.m.


  1. James Cormack on February 1, 2022 at 5:20 pm

    Just started on How the Scots Invented Canada.  I've also read Herman's book. Both are fascinating. And as you suggest, yours is more biographical, his a bit more academic. 

    My parents were married in the new Kirk in Alloway and I grew up in Thurso where my bedroom window looked over the Pentland Firth towards the Old Man of Hoy. 

    I'm not completely certain, but I rather think purists wouldn't let you get away with calling Burns' Cottage a croft (page 5). For me, a croft is pretty consistent with the Highlands and Islands, not south Ayrshire. But as I say, I'm not sure.  My great-great-grandfather is buried next to Burns' father. So rather like your wife I have "connections."

    My surname is quite distinctly Orkney and Caithness, and when I emigrated from Scotland to Canada in the 1960s, Cormacks were strung out all across northern Canada, but rarely in southern Canada, representative I suppose of the HBC's taking on Orcadians two and three hundred years ago as its ships revictualled in Kirkwall.  Now, over 40 years later, I notice that in places like Vancouver and Toronto there are scores of us!

    Let me know what you think of my croft remarks. 

    James Strathearn Cormack

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