The Scottish Diaspora Tapestry is a project to involve communities around the world in the celebration of Scottish heritage and culture.
Scots have migrated to every corner of the globe and have often had a profound impact on the areas where they settled. This embroidery project will record the stories of 25 such communities worldwide.
The Scottish Diaspora Tapestry will consist of 250 individual panels, embroidered by volunteers in each community. Their Scottish links will be documented and incorporated into the panels, which will all be assembled and displayed in Scotland as part of 2014 Homecoming.
The Embroiderers’ Guild of Victoria stitched 4 panels. They are about 18″ square. The drawings and materials were supplied by the designers in Prestonpans, Scotland
The four panels we worked on are for Robert Dunsmuir, Agnes Deans Cameron, Simon Fraser, and Sir James Douglas. As a member of the Guild, I stitched the hair, face, and cravat of Robert Dunsmuir and the section showing the Arctic ice floes and mountains in the lower right hand corner of the Agnes Deans Cameron panel.
Below are the embroidered panels ready to be sent to Scotland for the final finishing and incorporating into the tapestry.
ROBERT DUNSMUIR, was a coal-miner, entrepreneur, and politician, born 31 Aug. 1825 near Kilmarnock (Strathclyde), Scotland. He was highly influential on Vancouver Island leaving the city a legacy of a castle he built for his wife that is now a major tourist attraction in the city.
AGNES DEANS CAMERON, educator, writer, lecturer, and adventurer, was born 20 Dec. 1863 in Victoria, the youngest child of successful Scots immigrant parents.
Cameron’s initial choice of a teaching career was not an unusual one for a young Canadian woman in 1880. Her distinction lies in her level of achievement in the patriarchal public school system of British Columbia and her contributions to the western Canadian debates about education.
fur-trader and explorer; was born at Mapletown (near Bennington, Vt) in 1776. He died on his farm near St Andrews, Stormont County, Canada West, 18 Aug. 1862. He was the eighth and youngest child of Simon Fraser, who was descended from the Frasers of Culbokie and Guisachan, a cadet branch of the Frasers of Lovat. The Fraser River is named after him as well as a university.
Sir JAMES DOUGLAS
Hudson Bay Company officer and governor of Vancouver Island and of the crown colony of British Columbia was born 5 June or 15 Aug. 1803. He died at Victoria, B.C., 2 Aug. 1877.
A “Scotch West Indian,” as he was known in the fur trade, James Douglas was the son of John Douglas and nephew of Lieutenant-General Sir Neill Douglas. John Douglas and his three brothers, merchants in Glasgow, held interests in sugar plantations in British Guiana.