Dear Sir; I have read different articles on
Tartan Day and frankly although many are delightful I wish to clarify
once and for all how Tartan Day started.
At a meeting of the Federation of Scottish
Clans in Nova Scotia in the courthouse rooms in the town of Antigonish,
(pronounced; Anti-go-nish) a discussion arose as to how few heroes we
have in this day and age and who should our children look to as a hero
or a person who could be held up as someone you would like to pattern
Many names of Scots who helped settle this
country were mentioned.
After much discussion it was felt that many
young people did not have much interest in their history or backgrounds.
It was felt the Scots who came to Nova Scotia to settle and all of
Canada as well showed what hard work, determination and faith in God
We felt we should have a day strictly in
remembrance of these people.
Our minutes read as follows: March 9, 1986
Motion by Bill Crowell, President of Clan Cameron and seconded by Jean
Watson, President of Clan Farquharson..."that we establish a day known
as Scot Day". Following discussion this was amended to read 'Tartan
Day'". "This to be a day chosen to promote Scottish Heritage by the most
visible means. The wearing of Scottish attire especially in places where
the kilt is not ordinarily worn, i.e.; work, play or worship....in
honour of our forebearers."
I was asked to find a date that would
start the Scottish events for the year. April 6th was chosen. Not
because it was the same date as the Declaration of Arbroath but because
this date stood for the things we felt important to all.
I was given the job to publicize the date. I
wrote to every Legislative Assembly Member across Canada individually
and to all the Scottish Societies and Clans I could find asking their
support. This was a labour of over ten years work.
In ten years Tartan Day spread from coast to
coast thanks to all the various organizations Canada-wide who got behind
this worthwhile day.
Following the establishment of the day in
Ontario word started to spread across the U.S.A. and we were delighted
to have them take up the cause.
I hope this article will straighten out any
misconceptions about it's beginning and give credit to the proper
founders of this great date. The Federation of Scottish Clans In Nova
Yours truly, Mrs. Jean L. MacKarcher Watson
Past- President F.O.S.C.N.S.
485 Cobequid Road, Lower Sackville, HRM,
Nova Scotia, Canada, B4C 3Y7
cc; Mel Baird, President, Federation of
Scottish Clans In Nova Scotia