Scots-Irish Americans

Scots-Irish Americans

Captain William Ralph Davidson was my 9th great-grandfather. He was born 7/11/1609 at the Scottish enclave in Dublin, Ireland and died there 8/15/1684. His grandson was Alexander Davidson.

Alexander Davidson was born in Dingwall, Scotland and came to America by way of Ireland around 1740. Scots-Irish or Scotch-Irish Americans immigrated from Ulster, Ireland and were considered Ulster Protestants.

King James I created "Plantations" around 1606 in Ulster, Ireland to organize and colonize Northern Ireland where the local people were considered barbarous and rebellious and needed "controlling" by the King. 

Ulster Plantation had been proposed since the end of The Nine Years War to pacify his Scottish subjects after he moved court from Scotland to London. In 1608, an Irish rebellion was used as a means to get rid of Irish inheritance rights (gavelkind) and now there was plenty of Northern Irish land to grant to Scottish subjects. Veterans of the war were granted 3000 acres each and had to bring 48 males with at least 20 families from English estates to the plantation.

Scottish "undertakers", people who undertook the responsibility of plantation land owners, were banned from hiring locals and were required to import a workforce from Protestant England or Scotland. This never worked as planned and many planters hired local labor.

The Plantation was intended to control the Irish population but it created a hostile environment.

The groups created concentrations of British settlers around newly created towns and garrisons. These garrisons were small and privately funded by wealthy land owners, but supported by the King.

Tenants within the towns had to be English speaking, Protestant, and loyal to the King. These tenant planters were barred from selling any of their land to any Irish residents and were required to build defenses around their land against rebellion or invasion. 

Just about the time King James premiered his new Plantation in Ulster, the Virginia Plantation of Jamestown started in America and the Ulster financial backers began to invest in Virginia Colony instead.

Many Scotch-Irish Presbyterians decided to immigrate to Virginia Colony instead of Ulster Plantation for further religious freedoms and to express their allegiance to God as opposed to the king.

😎Now I know where my rebellious spirit comes from.