Scottish diaspora

A Scotswoman and her sampler

This 1830s sampler, made by a young girl in rural Scotland, eventually made its way across the globe and has been handed on down her family, together with her craft skills. The sampler and its provenance I got the history bug early, and when I was set a family history assignment at school I wrote […]

First footers and Christmas pudding

Over on the First footers and Christmas pudding page I’ve attached the text of a talk I gave at Toitū Otago Settlers Museum on the history of Christmas, New Year and Easter in nineteenth-century Dunedin. It considers how colonists from different ethnic and religious backgrounds adopted and adapted their holiday customs to fit with their […]

The quest for black bun

Will you be eating black bun this New Year? I’ll be trying this Scottish delicacy for the first time, having just done a little research on its history in New Zealand. It all started when somebody asked me if I’d be mentioning black bun in a talk I’m giving soon about seasonal festivities in nineteenth-century […]