What tartan for known Canadian ancestor but unknown Scott's ancestor?

THX1138

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Though I am in the US, my immediate heritage is Canadian and European. But my question is about my Canadian and lost Scott's heritage and related tartan's.

To start, my Canadian heritage is from the 1780's to 1947, when they moved to Connecticut. My Canadian Grandfather, from Quebec, served in the RC Army during WW2, and his army pictures are very 'Scottish' despite him being from Quebec.
His GG-grandfather was true Scott's, by way of Scotlad to Cornwall to Connecticut to Quebec. But hidden as no name on the marriage license and church records or Canadian census records for 2 censuses. So, I know he was hiding from the law. All of the Canadian fam names are in French, but every generation and family down, has at less one 'George' in it.

May question is, given all of this. What tartan or tartan's can I claim? Blackwatch due to my grandfather, possibly? If so, what brooch as well? Is there a tartan for the Canadian Army, and can I claim it?

As for my 1700's Scott's relative, not knowing his clan, is there a tartan that says, 'I'm of Scotts heritage, so deal!' and would the thistle brooch be appropriate?
Thanks to all!
 

Tirellan

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Though I am in the US, my immediate heritage is Canadian and European. But my question is about my Canadian and lost Scott's heritage and related tartan's.

To start, my Canadian heritage is from the 1780's to 1947, when they moved to Connecticut. My Canadian Grandfather, from Quebec, served in the RC Army during WW2, and his army pictures are very 'Scottish' despite him being from Quebec.
His GG-grandfather was true Scott's, by way of Scotlad to Cornwall to Connecticut to Quebec. But hidden as no name on the marriage license and church records or Canadian census records for 2 censuses. So, I know he was hiding from the law. All of the Canadian fam names are in French, but every generation and family down, has at less one 'George' in it.

May question is, given all of this. What tartan or tartan's can I claim? Blackwatch due to my grandfather, possibly? If so, what brooch as well? Is there a tartan for the Canadian Army, and can I claim it?

As for my 1700's Scott's relative, not knowing his clan, is there a tartan that says, 'I'm of Scotts heritage, so deal!' and would the thistle brooch be appropriate?
Thanks to all!
A Google search of "how to find my family tartan" bring up a list of possible resources which at least offers a start, a lot seem to start with a surname though. This might be useful Guidance - The Scottish Register of Tartans
 

CupofJoe

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This is the Plaid du Quebec
It dates from the 1960s
 

Pyan

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There's actually no legal reason why you can't wear any tartan that you like the look of, you just risk the opprobrium of actual clan members if they notice and discover you're "not entitled"...

download (1).jpg
 

Foxbat

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There's actually no legal reason why you can't wear any tartan that you like the look of, you just risk the opprobrium of actual clan members if they notice and discover you're "not entitled"...
This is quite true. Clan tartan is a fairly new development. Before that, material was simply dyed with the materials available and patterns were recognised as coming from a specific weaver rather than a clan.

Until circa 1842 there was no record of specific patterns for specific clans.
 

The Judge

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What tartan or tartan's can I claim?
My understanding is one wears the tartan of one's surname, but not every Scottish name actually has a tartan, or failing that one's district. But it's not a question of claiming it -- just because someone has a Scottish ancestor (and I'm one of those with Scots heritage dating from a GGGrandfather, with known Craig, Cowie and Balfour surnames in Angus) doesn't "entitle" one to wear a tartan.

Having said that, there is no actual law that says what tartan one may or may not wear, it's simply tradition. So if you can, if you want, wear any tartan that appeals to you. However, I'd suggest you don't attend a Burns night or similar, wearing the tartan of a clan to which you have no connection, as that might provoke some people.

Blackwatch due to my grandfather, possibly? If so, what brooch as well? Is there a tartan for the Canadian Army, and can I claim it?
Again, you could if you wanted. But I rather suspect that those who are in the military would take great offence if you were to wear their tartan, so I wouldn't recommend it.


EDIT: too slow in replying!
 

The Judge

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From the Scottish Tartans Authority:

If you think there's Scottish blood in the family then look back into the family history as far as you can, at all the surnames to which you are genetically connected. You may then find one that has a clan - and therefore a tartan - connection. If you end up with a choice, then simply pick the one you like best.​
If that process still produces nothing, then you can fall back on a District tartan. Whilst District tartans are suggested for some names, it's not possible to allocate them all or to know what area your relatives may have come from. If you can identify that area of Scotland most associated with your family, then check to see if there's a relevant District tartan.​
If even that proves unsuccessful, then you can always wear one of what we call 'Universal Tartans' that have no specific clan or district connections and are therefore suitable for anyone to wear, whether or not they're Scottish.​


So choose one of these "Universal Tartans" and you shouldn't offend anyone.
 

Venusian Broon

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From a site that sells tartans online:

"Today some tartans are seen as universal, so anyone can wear these plaids whatever their background. Most famous is Royal Stewart tartan, originally designed for Queen Victoria. Then there's Black Watch tartan, which now commemorates Scotland's most famous regiment. Other examples include Macleod Dress or 'Loud Macleod' to its fans. Lindsay which is so popular it's almost public property. Dress Stewart is much loved for womenswear. And Scotland Forever is Scotland's gift to the world. Lastly (wait for it!) there's... almost any tartan on earth."

Regarding the last point:

"...here's the big take-away: there's no rule to stop you wearing any old clan or family tartan! That idea's a myth. Scottish tradition is all about welcoming outsiders into our community. To wear someone's plaid is a sign of respect and friendship. So it's fine to choose any traditional tartan just because you like it!"

The cynic in me, thinks, well they would say that if they are trying to sell tartan products. ;)

Here's the original article with samples of all of the above: 7 universal tartans that anyone can wear (including a big surprise!)

EDIT:

The only thing I might give a few moments thought is: "Is this tartan Campbell or Macdonald?" Generally we Scots like to gently rib each other when we find what 'side' our name puts us on, if the topic comes up in conversation. (Hint, not very much at all). Although there are probably a dozen people somewhere in the land that do actually take proper umbrage if they discover you have Campbell leanings. Even by mistake.
 
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Pyan

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(and I'm one of those with Scots heritage dating from a GGGrandfather, with known Craig, Cowie and Balfour surnames in Angus)
And my family name is possibly from a wee village just south-west of Arbroath, also in Angus...
 

THX1138

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My understanding is one wears the tartan of one's surname, but not every Scottish name actually has a tartan, or failing that one's district. But it's not a question of claiming it -- just because someone has a Scottish ancestor (and I'm one of those with Scots heritage dating from a GGGrandfather, with known Craig, Cowie and Balfour surnames in Angus) doesn't "entitle" one to wear a tartan.

Having said that, there is no actual law that says what tartan one may or may not wear, it's simply tradition. So if you can, if you want, wear any tartan that appeals to you. However, I'd suggest you don't attend a Burns night or similar, wearing the tartan of a clan to which you have no connection, as that might provoke some people.


Again, you could if you wanted. But I rather suspect that those who are in the military would take great offence if you were to wear their tartan, so I wouldn't recommend it.


EDIT: too slow in replying!
Thanks! And not as slow as me.:)
I'll stay away from Blackwatch then. @Venusian Broon and @Foxbat have some excellent leads. That's the thing, when you know from DNA and little hints from records but no name or prof, it better to play it safe.
 

THX1138

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From a site that sells tartans online:

"Today some tartans are seen as universal, so anyone can wear these plaids whatever their background. Most famous is Royal Stewart tartan, originally designed for Queen Victoria. Then there's Black Watch tartan, which now commemorates Scotland's most famous regiment. Other examples include Macleod Dress or 'Loud Macleod' to its fans. Lindsay which is so popular it's almost public property. Dress Stewart is much loved for womenswear. And Scotland Forever is Scotland's gift to the world. Lastly (wait for it!) there's... almost any tartan on earth."

Regarding the last point:

"...here's the big take-away: there's no rule to stop you wearing any old clan or family tartan! That idea's a myth. Scottish tradition is all about welcoming outsiders into our community. To wear someone's plaid is a sign of respect and friendship. So it's fine to choose any traditional tartan just because you like it!"

The cynic in me, thinks, well they would say that if they are trying to sell tartan products. ;)

Here's the original article with samples of all of the above: 7 universal tartans that anyone can wear (including a big surprise!)

EDIT:

The only thing I might give a few moments thought is: "Is this tartan Campbell or Macdonald?" Generally we Scots like to gently rib each other when we find what 'side' our name puts us on, if the topic comes up in conversation. (Hint, not very much at all). Although there are probably a dozen people somewhere in the land that do actually take proper umbrage if they discover you have Campbell leanings. Even by mistake.
Thanks! Royal Stewart and Scotland Forever look like two of the best one to choose from.:)
 

Foxbat

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Thanks! Royal Stewart and Scotland Forever look like two of the best one to choose from
Just to get your Scottish blood flowing, here's the painting Scotland Forever (Elizabeth Thompson a.k.a. Lady Butler). It depicts the charge of The Scots Greys at Waterloo where the imperial eagle of the 45th French Regiment was captured by Sergeant Ewart.
Scotland_Forever.jpg
 

Pyan

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And here's the Thin Red Line, when 500 men of the 93rd (Sutherland Highlanders) stopped 2,500 Russian cavalry at the battle of Balaclava, 1854.

Robert_Gibb_-_The_Thin_Red_Line.jpg


93, an' no' deid yet!
 

THX1138

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I want to thank each and every one of you for your input and help. Greatly appreciated!
So, Royal Stewart and Scotland Forever and Plaid du Quebec look like the best choices, as long as no Canadian comes up and asks 'Parlez-vous français?' My only answer is 'Je ne parle pas français.' And that's about all I can say! (All I got from a year of French in High School :rolleyes:)

Thanks again everyone!

Time for a wee drop of Islay...
 
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