24th Annual Rural Hill Loch Norman Scottish Festival

Clan President Russ Harper and Amy Jenkins

The Rural Hill Loch Norman Scottish Festival (NC) was held on April 8-9, 2017.  Spring has sprung, pollen fills the air, cold mornings and clear skies greeted the sixty two clan tents participating and Clan Wallace was among them.  Other participants included the SAMS (Scottish American Military Society), Council of Scottish Clans and Societies, Scottish Culture and St. Andrews Society of North Carolina, and the Scottish Society of Wilmington, North Carolina.  Russ and Marcia Harper hosted the Clan Wallace tent.  Frank Randall, Jean and Jeffrey Reece joined us for the Saturday.  Sunday we were joined by Craig and Therese Wallace.   Council member Amy Jenkins competed all weekend in the Women’s athletics. Amy will be competing in the Masters in Iceland this year.

These games are held at Rural Hill Farms in Huntersville, North Carolina.  Rural Hill, the homestead of Revolutionary War patriots Major John and Violet Wilson Davidson is located in the Catawba River Valley in northwest Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. The Davidson family is representative of the thousands of Scots and Scots-Irish who contributed to the growth of the Carolinas and put a unique cultural stamp on the American South.

The entertainment included, Ed Miller, SYR, Scooter Muse, Father Son and Friends, and John Taylor.   Eleven pipe bands took the field in piping completion.  The Games included heavy athletics, Border Collies, Highland Wrestling, Historical Folk Life Encampment, Scottish Dancing and Children events.

Saturday events included a Flag Retirement Ceremony which SAMS (Scottish American Military Society) performed.

Russ and I would like to thank all that came out and enjoy the weekend with us.  We had a wonderful time and look forward to seeing you at other games.


Contributed by Marcia Harper

Inaugural Tartan Day North Carolina

The Inaugural Tartan Day North Carolina celebration was held on April 6, 2017 at the Raleigh Museum of History. North Carolina has a rich history of Scots relocating to the new world. During troubled times, many Highlanders relocated to the Cape Fear River Valley and from the Lowlands, Ulster Scots settled throughout the Piedmont and Southern Appalachians.

Clan Wallace and Clan Donald were invited to the Museum of History to help educated folks on how important Tartan Day is in North Carolina. Along with the two clans where Wake District Pipe and Drum, weaving demonstration, and sword dancing. Dr. Bruce Durie, spoke on finding your Scottish roots.

Russ and Marcia Harper set up a display of things that related to Scotland and North Carolina. Packets were created to hand out to teachers to help their students better understand what it is to be Scottish and how it relates to North Carolina. It was estimated that 600 home school children visited us for Tartan Day.

Thanks to all that came out and enjoyed the day.

Contributed by Marcia Harper

7th Annual Tartan Day South

The 7th annual Tartan Day South (SC) was held on April 1, 2017.  Sunshine and cold temperatures on Saturday greeted the twelve clan tents participating and Clan Wallace was among them.   Russ and Marcia Harper hosted the Clan Wallace tent.

Tartan Day South is held at the Historic Columbia Speedway, where Richard Petty had is first NASCAR race.

Carolina British Classic cars and Hurling where just some of the things you could enjoy.  The festival included athletics both men and women, Scottish dancing and Irish dancing, Children’s games face painting and storytelling, and three pipe bands.

What a great weekend we had.  Thanks to all that came out to enjoy the day with us.

Contributed by Marcia Harper

2nd Annual Myrtle Beach Highland Games

Clan President Russ Harper with wife Marcia

The Inaugural Myrtle Beach Highland Games (SC) was held on March 25, 2017.  These games are held at Market Commons in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.   Overcast day created the twenty three clan tents participating and Clan Wallace was among them.  Russ and Marcia Harper hosted the Clan Wallace tent.

The entertainment included the St. Andrews Pipes and Drum, Myrtle Beach Regional Pipe and Drum, Cross Creek Pipe and Drum, and the Coastal Shields Pipe and Drum, SYR and Tuatha Dea.  The Games included heavy athletics, Children’s Highland games competition, and Border Collie Demonstration.  The vendors at the games included, Near and Far, Timeless Irish Treasures, The Gaelic Shop, Metals & Pieces, Collegiate Tartan, The Celtic Knot, The Heelan Hound.

Thanks to all that came out and enjoyed the day.

Contributed by Marcia Harper

William “Bill” Hamilton Wallace 1922 – 2017

William “Bill” Hamilton Wallace

1922 – 2017

The Clan Wallace Society has lost a good friend. William Hamilton Wallace passed away on March 3rd, nearly 95 years of age. He was born on a homestead ranch in Gilbert, Arizona. He lost his father when he was six. Sadly, they lost the ranch shortly thereafter, yet he retired at 62 financially independent.

Bill distinguished himself as an Eagle Scout, valedictorian of his senior class, and the fourth Arizonian to graduate from the United States Coast Guard Academy. He married his college sweetheart, went to war, raised a family of five, and dared himself to start his own business.

But this is not his story. He built his life on hard work, keeping his word, and showing kindness to others. He was a grand gentleman and will be remembered as a good, honest and kind man.

He is survived by Laurie Wallace Herrero, Susan Mann, Alison Swanson, Hamilton Wallace, Jim Wallace, nine grandchildren, and seven great grandchildren.

Bill attended many Scottish Games, and several Clan Wallace Society Gatherings, where many members got to meet him and witnessed his very likeable demeanor. He will be dearly missed by his family, and his Clan Wallace Society family.

A Heroine for Scotland

The National Wallace Monument reveals the result of Scotland’s Heroine project

Mary Slessor and Maggie Keswick Jencks were unveiled on April 19th, 2017 as the first women who will be commemorated in The Hall of Heroes at The National Wallace Monument in Stirling, following a campaign that has captured the hearts and minds of the public across the globe.

The historic announcement marks the start of the most significant development in The Hall of Heroes since the first busts of Robert Burns and King Robert the Bruce were installed in 1886, and is the culmination of a four-month project that began with a shortlist of 14 remarkable Scottish women followed by a public vote to choose the one woman to be inaugurated into the Hall of Heroes.

From the thousands of votes which were cast online and by visitors to the Monument, the two women emerged clearly as the frontrunners, and following scrutiny of all votes the Selection Panel took the momentous decision that both Mary Slessor and Maggie Keswick Jencks should be welcomed into the Hall of Heroes.

Zillah Jamieson, Chair of Stirling District Tourism, explained: “This has been an incredible campaign, one which has ignited passions and has stimulated an amazing response. The level of enthusiasm for women to be given recognition has been truly inspirational – and the challenge for us as a self-funding charity has been to raise the funds required to embark on this project, and to now introduce these women into The Hall of Heroes. We are proud that we have been able to do this – with the help and the support of the visitors who come to the Monument”.

Missionary Mary Slessor, and co-founder of the Maggie’s Centres, Maggie Keswick Jencks, will join the gallery alongside the existing sixteen busts of famous men from Scotland’s history.

Both women exhibited selflessness and personal commitment to social improvement, and through their efforts to help others they achieved worldwide recognition.

Mary Slessor (1848-1915) has been described as the most celebrated Scottish missionary since David Livingstone, who inspired her to a life of service. Determined to overcome the challenges of her early years, and largely self-taught, she combined her missionary zeal with a practical approach to helping those in need, and she worked tirelessly to improve the quality of life for the people of Calabar, in Nigeria – against a background of prejudice and opposition.

Described as “selfless” and “exceptionally unique”, the opportunity to see Mary Slessor recognised as a heroine prompted many voters to share their own stories of how she inspired them, with one writing how “I became a full time missionary at the age of 21, after reading her biography.”

Rev Ian Alexander, Secretary of the World Mission Council of the Church of Scotland, said: “We are thrilled and delighted that Mary Slessor has been chosen as one of the first women to be immortalised in the Hall of Heroes. She is an iconic figure in Scotland and her pioneering work in Calabar, Nigeria, remains an inspiration to this day.  Today, the Church of Scotland, internationally, nationally and locally, continues her legacy in its commitment to work with partners around the world in addressing justice, health issues, and opportunities for all people to live full and productive lives, whether male or female, whether young or old.”

A writer, gardener and designer from Dumfries, Maggie Keswick Jencks (1941-1995), with her husband Charles founded the Maggie’s Centres, which offer practical, emotional and social support to people with cancer, their family and friends. She designed the blueprint for the centres, the first of which opened in Edinburgh in 1996, while she herself was facing cancer.

Voters in their hundreds chose to show their support for the “amazing” Maggie Keswick Jencks, with many highlighting how the Maggie’s Centres positively impacted their lives. Emphasising just how much the services they provide are appreciated, and how much their founder is admired, one comment read – “Maggie’s Centre has been so vital to our family, an inspirational lady who made so many people’s lives a little easier at a terrible time.”

Maggie’s Chief Executive Laura Lee said: “It is quite incredible to think that Maggie has been chosen, by the public, to be the first Scottish woman alongside Mary Slessor to join the Hall of Heroes. All the women on the shortlisted would have been worthy of a place amongst the likes of Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott, but perhaps the result reflects how many people are affected by cancer. Maggie deserves to be honoured for her vision of a different type of cancer care, but I think she would be surprised to find herself in such illustrious company.”

Abby Richards, from Stirling District Tourism, unveils the winners – Mary Slessor and Maggie Keswick Jencks as the first women to be commemorated in the Hall of Heroes gallery at the iconic tourist attraction in Scotland



Courtesy of Katie Goodfellow at Represent and the Wallace National Monument