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Scottish Highlanders, Indian Peoples: Thirty Generations of a Montana Family Paperback – January 1, 1997


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Montana Historical Society Press; 1st edition (January 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0917298527
  • ISBN-13: 978-0917298523
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #842,627 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Members of Montana's McDonald family trace their roots to the chiefs of the Nez Perce tribe and to the chiefs of Scotland's most formidable clan. On two continents, first as Highlanders, and then as Indians, the family suffered massacre and dispossession. Today the McDonalds, Indian people committed to nurturing their Indian culture, continue to honor their Scottish ancestry.
The McDonalds' story is told in Scottish Highlanders, Indian Peoples. This epic tale traces the McDonald family over a thousand years: starting with a ninth-century migration from Ireland to Scotland; taking in medieval warriors who battled for Scotland's independence from England; ending with these warriors' descendants on Montana's Flathead Reservation. This real-life family saga spans two continents, eleven centuries, and more than thirty generations to link the clans of Scotland and the native peoples of the American West.



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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 13, 1998
Format: Paperback
Dr. James Hunter, one of Scotland's most respected younger historians, recounts here the story of the MacDonalds of Western Montana -- a family whose roots run deep on two continents and among two seemingly disparate peoples: the Nez Perce of Oregon and Idaho's great inland plateau and one of the most legendary clans of the Scottish highlands. On one level, this is a first-class genealogical detective story, with plenty of local color. But it is much more than that, for what brings these two far-removed pasts together is not only the mingled blood of today's Montana MacDonalds, but the striking and, in many respects, tragic parallels in their people's histories. Just as every schoolchild in Scotland knows the dark tale of the MacDonalds' massacre at Glencoe, and their struggle to survive and maintain their identity and dignity in the aftermath, so Americans are haunted by the uprooting and dispossession of the Nez Perce and their legendary leader Chief Joseph. Those par! ! allels strike us as we readers see the MacDonalds' saga unfold, and they raise for us fundamental questions about human nature and the forces that shape history. Jim Hunter's work in both print and broadcasting, which is well-known in Britain, achieves that rare balance between sound scholarship and great popular appeal. He is a meticulous researcher, yet his interests are first and foremost human ones, and the stories he tells best are always those of common folk. The fact that this book has been a best-seller in Scotland while also earning critical acclaim shows how well he succeeds at this delicate balancing act.Read more ›
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on September 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
Scottish Highlanders, Indian Peoples is a loving undertaking to document and treasure the dual heritage of a familial group of people descended from Angus McDonald (who was Scottish) and Catherine McDonald, who was half Nez Perce and part Mohawk. The author describes his revised purpose in writing this book as follows: "This book was begun in the naive conviction that it would have an unrelievedly happy ending. Its comparisons between the modern Scottish Highlands and the modern Flathead Reservation, it was anticipated, would be such as to allow the book's closing paragraphs to contend that Highlanders and Indians, two otherwise disparate peoples linked by the McDonald family, are today overcoming the legacies of their respective pasts in ways which will allow both Highlanders and Indians to reinvigorate their cultures, their languages and much else besides. That may still happen. But to spend even a few days on the Flathead Reservation is quickly to discover that the task of linguistic renewal - to take a single example of the many such distinctions which have clearly to be made - is enormously more daunting here than in the Scottish Highlands...(p. 194)." The reality of the poverty of the inhabitants of the Flathead Reservation hits the author and the reader hard indeed. Nevertheless, after reading the history, which includes many moments of less than glorious deeds of the ancestors, one can only concur with the Salish speaker quoted by the author:"We have a saying...that as long as our songs are sung our people will remain here. And our songs are being sung today more than they have been sung for many years (p. 194)." Though the prose style of Mr. Hunter is sometimes tedious to untangle, his text is worth reading. Scottish Highlanders, Indian Peoples will appeal to special interest adult audiences both amateur and academic.
Nancy Lorraine, Reviewer
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ty M. Albright on June 16, 2008
Format: Paperback
Good resource for anyone interested in history, particularly the connection between earl Scottish settlers and their interaction with Native Americans. The book appears well documented and thorough, although a bit slow to read.
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This is a clear and concise version of the MacDonald family's emigration to America in the 19th century and their relationship with the Nez Perce Native Americans. It is also a comparison of the history of the Scottish people and their sufferings during the highland clearances in Scotland and the Native American Indians and their sufferings and clearances to the Reservations. On top of all that it also tells of the history of the Hudson Bay company of fur traders. This is a very rewarding and informative read.
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Anybody who's researching the McDonald's Clan, will want this book. Names, Families, Places, and dates that were unknown to me. Someewhere in the 30 generations, there should be a connection to almost any McDonald.
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