August 7 marks the 230th Anniversary of the 1789 Lighthouse Act and the role of Alexander Hamilton in the developing the lighthouses to guard American coastlines.
Prior to becoming America’s first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton also oversaw the establishment of the Lighthouse Service and Cutter Service, the basis for today’s U.S. Coast Guard Station New York.
The importance of lighthouses to ensure the safety of shipping and development of trade was clear to Hamilton.
ASF knows that our members love to hear about different places to stay in Scotland, so we are delighted to share a unique accommodation we you could stay at. Would you like to stay in a contemporary take on a traditional Scottish Brochs or Blackhouses?
VisitScotland have spotlighted this authentically Scottish experience so one can get in touch with ancestral roots – staying in an architecturally stunning modern broch or a charming (but modernized) traditional Blackhouse,
Traditional Brochs are often located in picturesque and secluded locations as we show in this image of The Brochs of Coigach. Today’s Brochs and Blackhouses but still offer modern life essentials such as hot showers, electricity and WiFi!
Unique to Scotland, historic Brochs are large drystone towers, dating from 100 BC to 100 AD (during the Roman invasion of Britain), the new generation of Brochs are warm and inviting custom-built drystone Broch, inspired by the architecture of prehistoric Brochs.
Once common throughout the Highlands and the Outer Hebrides, Blackhouses are traditional Scottish dwelling with a thatched roof, and today’s charming versions offer sympathetically renovated interior, including exposed stonework, solid fuel stove, underfloor heating and a fully fitted kitchen. The Isle of Lewis Gearrannan Village is pictured here.
When growing up in Scotland do you remember the The Sunday Post as your memories are about to flow back as leading Scottish publisher D.C. Thomson & Co. Ltd launch a podcast on June 12, of the Post’s Archives, primarily around the popular little column where readers, usually women, could write in with tips for running a household. Alongside will be a series of books as capsules of social history of the time.
The tips are funny, delightfully dated and dubious at the same time, and occasionally even useful!
WE ALSO TODAY HAVE GREAT TIPS and so DC Thomson are launching the podcast of the “Pass It On tips,” with a young, modern woman’s voice that remembers these tips in practice re-imagined.
A few of ASF’s favorite tips from the Sunday Post archives include: DENT REMOVER—Put table tennis balls that are dented into a bowl and pour boiling water over them. This takes the dents out.
A KNOTTY PROBLEM—A knot in string or laces which cannot be easily loosened should be hammered gently. Then insert the point of a thick needle and prise open.
REHEATING PIE—When reheating either meat or fruit pie, put the dish right into a paper bag, fold over, and pin in end. The pie heats all the way through without spoiling the crust.
CLOTHES PEGS—New clothes pegs should be popped into cold water and brought to the boil. Allow to cool and dry before using. They won’t snap or break so easily.
Presented by Historic Environment Scotland in association with ASF, the exhibit traces Muir’s early days in Dunbar Scotland to Yosemite CA, taking one on a journey to see the environments which Muir loved and did so much to help preserve spearheading the formation of America’s National Parks.
In 2018, the exhibit was expanded to include images from John Muir Trail in Scotland. The 134 mile route stretches coast-to-coast between Helensburgh in the west, to John Muir’s birthplace in Dunbar on the east.
On behalf of the ASF Board a thank you to everyone who worked so hard to make the Wallace Award Celebration such a memorable evening.
The evening saw Sir Moir Lockhead, Chairman of National Trust for Scotland, and Dr Andy Scott, renowned sculptor, with the Wallace Award for their contributions to Heritage, Arts and Culture.
Scotland’s National Chef, Gary Maclean, oversaw the menu, adding special touches. Glendronach Single Malt offered guests a whisky tasting of their excellent malts.
The wonderful team of Claire Mackenzie and Scott Gilmour of Noisemaker gave us musical interludes.
Silent and Live auctions helped support the ongoing work of the ASF and for an ASF Grant to the new Baird Family Hospital in Aberdeen and its Neonatal unit being overseen by the ARCHIE Foundation alongside the University of Aberdeen.
If you have questions please call the ASF Office on 212 605 0338
Smithsonian Magazine offers an instight into what was served for the first Thanksgiving Celebration shared by the Pilgrims and Wampanoag Nation at Plymouth Colony in 1621 from an account written by Edward Winslow, an English leader who attended and wrote home to a friend.
It is a full account of the meal served – where turkey was a part of the feast but not the center piece it is today.
Further insight is offered by Kathleen Wall, a “foodways culinarian” at the Wampanoag Homesite Plimoth Plantation a living history museum in Plymouth, Massachusetts who has researched recipe books and documents
Wall explains .. “Thanksgiving was a three-day celebration and … have no doubt whatsoever that birds that are roasted one day, the remains of them are all thrown in a pot and boiled up to make broth the next day. That broth thickened with grain to make a pottage.”
In addition to wildfowl and deer, the colonists and Wampanoag probably ate eels and shellfish, such as lobster, clams and mussels. “They were drying shellfish and smoking other sorts of fish,”
A Happy Thanksgiving to all from all of us at The American-Scottish Foundation® team.
Sir Moir Lockhead, Chairman, National Trust for Scotland for a lifetime journey providing transport for people to reach & enjoy Scotland’s beautiful landscapes & his current inspired leadership to conserve Scotland’s rich heritage.
Dr. Andy Scott for his outstanding contribution to Scottish Arts. Dr Scott is recognized as one of today’s foremost contemporary sculptors, world renowned for his public art. Amongst his most recognizable works are his 100 foot tall Kelpies, the largest equine sculptures in the world, located in Falkirk, Scotland.
The evening will be a celebration of Scotland with whisky from Glendronach Single Malt Scotch Distillery, Scottish food, music, dancing – and opportunities to bid on our silent and live auctions.
Scotland’s National Chef Gary Maclean, Winner of the UK MasterChef The Professionals 2016, Chef Lecturer at the City of Glasgow College, will bring “touches” to spark the menu.
The award winning team of Claire McKenzie & Scott Gilmour of Noisemaker will offer musical interludes with Mike Ogoltree and Shortbread, and will then lead the Scottish reels. Silent and Live Auctions will bring opportunities to help support the ongoing work of the ASF, and an ASF Grant to the new Baird Family Hospital in Aberdeen for its Neo Natal unit overseen by The ARCHIE Foundation alongside the University of Aberdeen.
We hope you will join us for this very special evening.
ASF is proud to have helped to bring the Kelpies to New York – we were so sorry to see them leave.
The full size 100 ft Kelpies, unveiled in 2015, are the largest equine sculptures in the world; situated in the Helix Park, Falkirk, beside the Forth of Clyde & River Carron extension. Boats traverse “through” the Kelpies; and when lit at night they become magnificent beacons.
Monday, October 1
6:00 pm Reception, 7:00 pm Lecture
The Explorers Club Headquarters, 46 E 70th Street, NYC
Member Ticket Price: $10
Guest Ticket Price: $25
Student Ticket Price: $5 with a valid student ID
John Keay, British historian, journalist, radio presenter and lecturer specializing in popular histories of India, the Far East and China, is widely seen as a pre-eminent historian of British India.
Keay will take one on a journey …
Like the travels of Marco Polo, those of Alexander Gardner clip the white line between credible adventure and creative invention. Either he is the nineteenth century’s most intrepid traveler or its most egregious fantasist, or a bit of both. Contemporaries generally believed him; posterity became more skeptical. And as with Polo, the investigation of Gardner’s story enlarged man’s understanding of the world and upped the pace of scientific and political exploration.
Before more reputable explorers notched up their own discoveries in innermost Asia, this lone Scots-American had roamed the deserts of Turkestan, ridden round the world’s most fearsome knot of mountains and fought in Afghanistan ‘for the good cause of right against wrong.’
From the Caspian to Tibet and from Kandahar to Kashgar, Gardner had seen it all. At the time, the 1820s, no other outsider had managed anything remotely comparable. When word of his feats filtered out, geographers were agog.
He witnessed the death throes of that Sikh empire at close quarters and, sparing no gruesome detail, recorded his own part in the bloodshed (the very same featuring as the exploits of ‘Alick’ Gardner in the ‘Flashman’ series).
Fame finally caught up with him during his long retirement in Kashmir. Dressed in tartan yet still living as a native, he mystified visiting dignitaries and found a ready audience for the tales of his adventurous past. But one mystery he certainly took to the grave: the whereabouts of his accumulated fortune has still to be discovered.
Using much original material, including newly discovered papers by Gardner himself, renowned historian John Keay will take us from the American West to the Asian East to unravel the greatest enigma in the history of travel.
Author of over 25 books and regularly contributor to a number of prominent publications in Britain and Asia. He began his career with The Economist as a political correspondent, and was a contributor to BBC radio.
Keay is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society & the Royal Literary Fund, and he has received several major honors including the Sir Percy Sykes Memorial Medal of the Royal Society for Asian Affairs. He read Modern History at Magdalen College, Oxford, and now lives in Argyll in the West Highlands of Scotland while traveling widely.
When next in Lower Manhattan a “must see” is the South Street Seaport Museum – and we encourage you to take time to wander around the Seaport which is one New York’s most historic areas.
The restoration and development of such historic places does not just happen and the story behind South Street Seaport Museum is just that. There would be no South Street Seaport Museum were it not for two visionaries – Jakob Isbrandtsen, founding chairman of the South Street Seaport Museum and founding president Peter Standford, together they envisioned so much of what is today’s wonderful South Street Seaport Museum.
The sad news of Isbrandsten’s passing last week brough to the ASF’s attention not only what he did for Lower Manhattan and New York – but for Scotland too.
One of Isbrandtsen’s great loves was the restoration of the windjammer Wavertree which was has deep roots to Scotland and the Jute trade.
As Captain Boulware, CEO of the South Street Seaport Museum notes… “He financed the purchase of the ship when she might have otherwise gone to scrap, bringing to New York a windjammer of the age of sail suitable for the task of representing her thousands of sisters.”.
The Wavertree was built in Southampton, England in 1885 and was one of the last large sailing ships built of wrought iron. She was built for the Liverpool company R.W. Leyland & Company, and is named after the Wavertree district of that city.
The ship was first used to carry jute between eastern India and Scotland. In 1947 Wavertree was converted into a sand barge at Buenos Aires, Argentina, This ship was discovered in 1967 by an American working on a sand barge and acquired by the South Street Seaport Museum in 1968.
After restoration at the the Arsenal Naval Buenos Aires the ship was towed to New York in 1969.
As well as being a visionary, Isbrandtsen was a tireless volunteer, inspiring others as Capt. Boulware continues …. “After his career in commercial shipping, he shifted to volunteerism and led by example, mucking bilges in the hold of Wavertree and all manner of dirty, difficult, and dangerous tasks. He was the first person aboard the ship in the morning and the last to leave. It was all for the ship and all for the people in her. His advertisement for volunteers: “Long hours, dirty work, no pay” was just the right way to engage people in the ship, and the work done under his leadership kept Wavertree afloat for decades, allowing the restoration and care that continues today.”
We take a moment here to look back at the 20th Annual New York Tartan Day Parade which took place on April 7th, the highlight to a week of events… so much to report on, so many to thank – and we have to mention how we were under the threat of snow – and it didnt happen – brisk but clear.
ASF presented several events during the week in addition to a series of lunchtime concerts at Bryant Park. A thank you to all those who helped with the programming which included
– an opportunity to learn more around the discovering of your Scottish roots with Dr Bruce Durie
– ‘A Taste of Scotland’ with a menu prepared by Scotland’s National Chef Gary MacLean, co-hosted with City of Glasgow College
– ASF Members & Friends Post Parade Reception at which we were joined by many guests from Scotland including the Archie Foundation, Clans & Castles, The Convenyor of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs Donald MacLeod of MacLeod, members of VisitScotland, the Scottish Parliament and Scottish Office.
Thank you to all who joined the The American-Scottish Foundation® contingenet and marched with us in the 20th Annual New York Tartan Day Parade – AND to all those who cheered us on.
KT Tunstall was a fabulous Grand Marshal – the first woman to lead the Parade. AND Congratulations to all the volunteers and our fellow NYC Tartan Week committee members – EVERYONE did a great
We have discovered a few highlights of Parade Day captured in a video on You Tube. – from the Pipes and Drums on the Fountain Terrace presented by The American-Scottish Foundation® at Bryant Park and onward to the Parade.
Prior to the Parade the young band of pipers from Sgoli Lionacleit had an opportunity to meet Keith Brown MSP for Clackmannanshire & Dunblane who could not resist the opportunity to try out a snare drum which he is pictured “carrying” below.
The Sgoil Lionacleit Pipe Band performed twice at Bryant Park – and for their second performance they were joined by 18 year old Lisa Kowalski who is winning recognition throughout the UK – this was her first visit to New York and the Parade. The involvement of the young performers is something ASF fully embraces within our ongoing bursary program – and reflects Scotland’s message of the Year of Young People.
Also taking part in the lunchtime concerts were Craig Weir and the multi talented Hannah Read – who left the following day for a month long tour in support of her latest album. Both Craig and Hannah have helped us in the development of the lunchtime concerts, a Thank you to everyone who took part.
Great performances from all
The Daily News carried a great report on the day which we link to below… “Scots of all ages proudly celebrated their homeland during the 2018 Tartan Day Parade in Manhattan on April 7, 2018.
The annual march, now in its 20th year, was led by Scottish singer KT Tunstall and included pipers playing traditional Scottish songs, dancers, flag twirlers, aplenty of dogs for the cheering crowd of spectators.”New York Daily News: