Scottish Gdańsk

14 Feb 2018

If you’ve been reading our reviews and using our maps you may have noticed that Gdansk is the home of two suburbs named Nowe Szkoty (New Scotland; Nowi Szotland in Kashubian and Neuschottland in German) and Stary Szkoty (Old Scotland; Stôri Szotland in Kashubian and Alt Schottland in German). There’s sound reasoning for this seemingly bizarre fixation with the home of tartan, as a scan through the history books reveals.

From the late 14th century onwards the Baltic region enjoyed strong trade links with Scotland, and recent evidence has confirmed that many of the timbers used in the building of Queen Mary’s House in St Andrews were shipped from the Gdańsk region some 600 years ago. Religious tolerance, an escape from poverty and famine, and the promise of adventure and riches prompted many Scots to seek a future in Gdańsk.

Many arrived as traders, and the contribution of these men to Polish, Prussian and Scottish culture cannot be underestimated. Robert Gordon made a fortune through the Aberdeen-Danzig trade route, and donated some GBP 10,000 to the foundation of a hospital in his hometown. Four hundred years on the building still stands, now better known as the Robert Gordon University. William Forbes, also known under the colourful sobriquet of Danzig Willie, built the spectacular Craigievar Castle on the back of his trading profits. Sir Robert Skene’s generous investments helped elevate Aberdeen to becoming the largest granite quarry on earth.


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Over a year ago
Gregory Martin
Shetland, Scotland
Christian-Frederick Conzendorf-Mattner - The English did not kill and expel 500,000 people in the Highland Clearances. In fact, it all had very little to do with the English. This was in general, done by the Scottish Lairds who wished to use the land for sheep farming, many were moved to poor coastal areas, others moved to industrial towns. There is far more to this sad time in our history, but please, try to be more accurate and less sweeping in your statements. Gregory Martin - Scottish Historian
Over a year ago
what is tri-city? There in no tri-city on a map. I can find only Gdansk or Sopot. And as I understand these two Scottish suburbs are in Gdansk not in "tri-city"
Over a year ago
What a shame Mr CFCM has no knowledge of history of Gdansk/Danzig and when the Scottish people actually settled in Gdansk.The independent and free town of Danzig only existed for 19 years. And I would check again who expelled the Danzigers from their homes. I would advise Mr CFCM to read the Tin Drum by G Grass as he lacks any sound historical knowledge.
Over a year ago
Christian-Frederick Conzendorf-Mattner
Great Britain/Devon,
Hi--yes most very true and correct.Iam from Danzig.My maternal Grandmother was a "Simson"--we understand from the original Simpsons from Aberdeen settling in Danzig in the 14th century.Scotland has a history with Poland as a nation --but it must be made clear the Scottish settlors in "Neuschottland" and "Altschottland" lived and worked in the independant and free Town of Danzig.When you refer to the Scottish Regiment of Danzig-- being a Polish Town -- that comment is wrong.Danzig is only Polish since it was taken by the Polish Communists in 1945.400 000+ Danzigers--including the decendents of Scottish settlors were either killed or at best forcefully expelled from their homes.This is very much on the lines of the infamous "Highland Clearances" in 1780 when the English killed and expelled approx. 500 000 Scots.
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