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Ontario / Upper Canada
Genealogy & History Resources

BOOK - The Lanark Society Settlers
By Carol Bennett
Originally published by Juniper Books, Renfrew, 1991
New edition by Global Heritage Press, Milton (now Ottawa), 2012

Softcover... 39.95 (C$)
Book on CD... 19.95 (C$)
pdf download.....15.95 (C$)
Link emailed within 1 business day
Licensed for personal use only

Softcover Edition
8.5" X 11"

Book-on-CD Edition

In 1820 and 1821 more than forty settlement societies from the Glasgow area of Scotland organized and managed the assisted emigration of a large number of Scottish families to the New Lanark Settlement in Lanark County, Upper Canada (Ontario) under the auspices of the British government. The immigrants were granted undeveloped land in the townships of Dalhousie, Lanark, North Sherborooke and Ramsay.

Many of the settlers were unemployed/underemployed weavers who suffered years of financial hardship as a result of Britain's faltering economy and the industrialization of the textile industy in Glasgow following the Napoleonic War. Also included were a significant number of Scots with experience in other occupations.

The Lanark Society Settlers were granted land in the townships of Dalhousie, Lanark, North Sherbrooke and Ramsay in Lanark County, Upper Canada.

The author describes the conditions that existed in Scotland two decades into the 19th centruy that pushed people to emigrate away from all that was familiar to them; the way in which the group emigration was organized and managed; and what the people found when they arrived in the ancient forests of present-day Eastern Ontario.

The Lanark Society Settlers includes many family/genealogical sketches of individual families. Also included are lists of English and Irish settlers.

Contents include:
  • Preface
  • Conditions at home & abroad
  • The voyage- the great adventure
  • Trials of a pioneer
  • Making a mark on the community
  • A brief history of Dalhousie Township
  • Lanark Township
  • Ramsay Township
  • North Sherbrooke
  • The Written Word
  • Personalities
  • Moving on
  • How to use this book
  • Emigration societies [Names of societies; some of the families in each society; several copies of original signatures of the heads of household; misc details of each society]
  • Miscellaneous
  • Independents
  • Military and individual settlers, etc (Irish and English settlers)
  • Sources
  • Bibliography
  • Index (click here to view index)
The Lanark Society Settlers, after being long out-of-print, is available once again in its complete original format.

Reviews (2012 Edition)
  • "In 1820 and 1821, more than forty emigration societies sponsored the migration from Scotland of about 3000 Scottish people who were given land in Upper Canada in the townships of Dalhousie, Lanark, North Sherbrooke, and Ramsay. These settlers came to be known as the Lanark Society Settlers, even though one “Lanark Society” never existed, but the term came to represent those who settled in the New Lanark Settlement of Ontario. Ms. Bennett provides the historical context which drove the travelers to leave their homes and seek new ones across the Atlantic. The 1815 war between Britain and France had devastated the British economy, particularly depressing the Scottish weavers in the counties of Lanark and Renfrew. The author describes the voyagers’ experiences on the ships and the events following their arrivals. There are maps, photographs, biographies, genealogies, journal entries, and anecdotes depicting the societies, the families, and the townships. The author lists her sources and bibliography for those who wish to do further research. The index has over 400 entries, mostly surnames. Included are lists of some English and Irish people who arrived in the Lanark Settlement at the same time as the Society Settlers."
    - Bobbi King, Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter, October 22, 2013
232 Pages
8-1/2 x 11"
B & W Photos
Softcover - Perfectbound
Originally published by Juniper Books, Renfrew, 1991
This printing by Global Heritage Press, Milton, 2012

ISBN 978-1-926797-61-8

About the author: Carol Bennett-McCuaig
Carol Bennett-McCuaig (1938-2018) was a former weekly newspaper editor who became a prolific and respected author. She earned two degrees from the University of Waterloo, one in History and the other in Religious Studies. She wrote sixty three books, including regional histories, commissioned works and books geared to helping people who are researching their Lanark and Renfrew County (Ontario) roots, and a long list of historical novels. One of her histories, In Search of the Red Dragon: The Welsh in Canada, received the Ninnau award for its contribution to North American Welsh culture. In 1997 she received an Achievement Award from the Ontario Heritage Foundation, for her body of work in recording regional history.

Click for a list of Carol Bennett-McCuaig's books


  • BOOK - A Swarm of Bees - Lanark Society Settlers 1800-1900, A Journey from Scotland to Upper Canada and Utah By Ron W. Shaw

  • BOOK - The Lanark Society Settlers By Carol Bennett

  • BOOK - The Lanark Society Settlers: Ships Lists of the Glasgow Emigration Society of 1821 by Gerald Neville

  • BOOK - Narrative of a Voyage to Quebec and the Journey from Thence to New Lanark in Upper Canada By John McDonald, A Lanark Society Settler, 1821

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