A Hop Over the Pond

A Hop Over the Pond

Embracing My Scottish Roots

I can't believe I'm posting consecutively two days in a row. This is a new record for me, but I thought in this post I would express my general excitement for the next couple of days. Tomorrow morning at 8:00 I will be leaving for Edinburgh, Scotland. Why am I so ecstatic about this trip you may ask? Not only does Edinburgh have tremendous historical significance due to it being the home of great writers and intellectuals such as Sir Walter Scott and Adam Smith, but just stepping within Scottish borders is truly significant for me. My surname, Crawford, has ancient roots in Scotland. Through my own personal research, I have discovered that the Crawfords were cousins to the great leader of Scottish independence, William Wallace, or Braveheart. Supposedly, Wallace's mother, Margaret, was a Crawford.

Although I am not able to trace my family tree back 800 years to Wallace's fight for independence, I am able to trace my Scottish roots to my fifth great-grandfather, Sampson Crawford, who was born in Scotland in 1768. While I do not know much about Sampson's life, I am for certain that he married Nancy Campbell (obviously another Scot) and had a son, William, in Pennsylvania in 1793. So, sometime between 1768 and 1793, he made the difficult voyage across the Atlantic to seek a better life in America. Reflecting on this research, one could say that I may be the first person in my family to step foot within Scotland's borders for over 200 years. As a history buff and amateur genealogist, I would say this will be a very powerful and emotional experience for me. I would not be surprised if I shed a few tears.

I only wish I knew more about Sampson, such as where he lived and who his family was. I know Edinburgh is somewhat near the county or province in which the Crawford clan was generally situated. This experience only triggers a desire to research further into this side of my family. While I will only be in Scotland a few days, hopefully I can return to continue this journey in discovering my Scottish ancestors. It is surreal to think that I will be in my homeland sometime tomorrow.



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