Vol. 47 No. 3 (1999)
Research Article

The Transfer of Scottish Placenames to Canada

Published 1999-09-01



Scottish migration to the area of present-day Canada was so intensive from the late 1700s to the early 1900s that nearly two million Canadians claimed Scottish ancestry after the middle of the twentieth century. Through their placenames the Scots were able to reinforce their presence in Canada. Settlements in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island were mainly developed by migrants from the Highlands and Western Isles in the late 1700s and early 1800s, so that most of their names recall places in those parts of Scotland. In the remaining provinces and territories (except Newfoundland, which had no direct migration from Scotland), most of the transfer names came from the Lowland parts of Scotland, principally during the 1800s. From Inverness in Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Island amd Strathgartney in Prince Edward Island to Lanark in Ontario, and Thurso in Quebec to Banff in Alberta, and Clyde River in Nunavut, Canada reveals an extensive Scottish contribution to its rich toponymy.


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