Optional Add on Tours

Find information below regarding add on tours on offer.Tour options and available tickets that are featured below may be chosen through the conference registration portal either by making a selection at the digital check out for credit card registrations or via the paper form.

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Historic Tour #2

Early Scots-Irish at Casco Bay, Maine

Tuesday, August 14, 2018    8:30 AM – 4:15 PM

This full-day escorted bus tour will focus on the history and places where our early Ulster-Scot ancestors first landed and made their homes in the Casco Bay area including Portland and South Portland –called Falmouth and Purpooduck in 1718.

Your tour guide will be Dr. Mary M. Drymon-DeRose, local Scotch-Irish historian, museum educator and author of “Scotch-Irish Foodways in America” and the soon to be published book “A Gossamer Layer of Plaid: the Women of the 1718 Migration”.

We’ll leave Brunswick at 8:30 am and enjoy an introductory talk as we make the half hour trip to Portland. Our first stop will be the scenic overlook of Casco Bay at FORT ALLEN PARK on Portland’s Eastern Promenade.  We will ride along the working waterfront to a brief stop in front of the McLELLAN MANSION (home of one of the Ulster-Scots most prosperous Maine families).

Our next stop will be a walking tour of the TATE HOUSE and MEANS HOUSE in the Stroudwater area of Portland. Captain George Tate served as the Senior Mast Agent for the British Royal Navy, overseeing the cutting and shipping of white pines used for ship’s mast that lead to England’s supremacy on the seas. Many of our Scots-Irish ancestors were employed by this vital industry including the Ulster-Scot Means family. Next door, we’ll also tour the small STROUDWATER BURYING GROUNDS, where several of the early Ulster families are buried.

From there we’ll go to the campus of Southern Maine Community College in South Portland, where we’ll enjoy lunch (cost not included) at the Oceanview Dining Hall overlooking SIMONTON COVE on Casco Bay (named for 1718 Ulster-Scot - Andrew Simonton). After lunch, our historic walking tour will begin by exploring the small “FIRST SETTLERS CEMETERY”, where we’ll visit the final resting place of several of the passengers of the ship “Robert” and we’ll place a thistle on the gravestone of Ann Douglas Simonton, from Strabane, Northern Ireland.  From there we’ll walk along the scenic oceanside SPRING POINT SHOREWAY TRAIL around Purpoodock Point to the small “ALL FAITHS CHURCH” that now occupies the site of the first log cabins and garrison-meeting house the early Ulster-Scots families erected for worship and protection. This walk is less than ¾ mile total with several stops planned.

The final stop of the day will be at the cove where the “ROBERT” (one of the “Five Ships”) was frozen in during the winter of 1718. On our way back to Brunswick we’ll have time for a lively questions and answers discussion and arrive by 4:15 pm.

This tour is a must for 1718 Scots-Irish Reunion attendees and folks from New England & Maine interested in learning more about the rich history of the early Scotch-Irish that settled on Casco Bay and the shores of southern Maine.

40 places available

Cost $60


Historic Tour #3


Friday, August 17, 2018 9:00 AM- 12:00 PM

This tour will focus on the places where our Ulster-Scot ancestors met together to support three major principals of their common culture: Family, Faith and Freedom.

 The tour will begin at two Brunswick graveyards that outlived their meeting houses. At the FIRST PARISH CEMETERY and former MEETING HOUSE site, we will share stories of First Family Ulster-Scots who attended to the laws of God and the laws of the Town, and visit their grave sites. Then we’ll visit nearby MAQUOIT CEMETERY, site of the former FIRST BAPTIST  CHURCH, whose congregation refused to pay taxes to support First Parish Meeting House. Your tour guide will be Barbara Desmarais, a Brunswick historian whose Ulster-Scot ancestors missed the 1718 boat by two years.

On our way to the nearby HARPSWELL CENTER, we’ll stop at the home site and memorial of MATTHEW THORNTON, signer of the Declaration of Independence.

Then at the historic HARPSWELL MEETING HOUSE and COMMON GROUND CEMETERY, you will be guided through the classic old New England  Meeting House, built in 1757-1759 where the congregation was rallied to the fight against  the tyrant, King George. You will see the church building dedicated to Maine’s celebrated writer and minister the Rev. Elijah Kellogg. You can walk through the common parade ground where local militia met to prepare for the defense of their Colony and their neighbors. You will see and hear of the artifacts still on site from the days of the American Revolution. You will walk among the grave sites of Harpswell’s first Ulster-Scot families and be guided by their descendants.  Your lead guide will be David Hackett, President of the Harpswell Historical Society, the great-great-grandson of Rev. Elijah Kellogg and descendant of other local Ulster-Scot families. Don’t miss this tour!

31 places available

Cost $30



Historic Tour #4

Friday, August 17, 2018 1:00 PM-5:00 PM

Archaeology: McFadden Site and Merry Meeting Bay

I am pleased to be able to show, and talk to you about my family’s journey into past.  On our Tour of the Somerset Site, you will see where one of the first families of the 1718 emigration settled, in hopes to establish a new and better life.

You will be able to walk about the land that has been basically left untouched for the past three centuries.  You will see remains of the original sills in the bottom of the cellar hole, as well as some of the many artifacts dating to the time of 1718-1722. I will talk a bit about how the property was  acquired , and what the future goals are for the project.

Pam Crane our Lead Archeologist will discuss aspects of her field, and her findings of our site over the past five years. Chances are you will meet and have the opportunity to talk with some of our crew, who have worked volunteering many hours to this very significant project.

31 places available  

Cost: $30