About Us

The Scottish Prisoners of War Society (SPOWS) is a dedicated community of descendants and researchers interested in learning more about our ancestral Scottish prisoners of war, who were exiled to Massachusetts in 1650 and 1652, from the Battle of Dunbar (3 Sep 1650) and the Battle of Worcester (3 Sep 1651). The battles took place on the same day, just one year apart, and are two of the battles fought during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms (1639-1651).

What began as a YAHOO! Email Discussion GROUP in 2007, by Eleanor Hall and Teresa Rust, grew into a large group with years of accumulated knowledge. In an effort to preserve our research, Teresa and a small group of dedicated members formally incorporated the society as a Colorado non-profit on 3 Sep 2016. We thought it only fitting that our founding be on the same day as the battles that have inspired our journey.

Our Mission

The Scottish Prisoners of War Society desires to bring together the known facts of the prisoners. By working together with other descendants and researchers, we hope to contribute to the general knowledge of our Scottish POW ancestors and the historical events surrounding their lives.

We are interested in finding out who they were, where they came from, how they came to be in the battles, and what happened to them afterwards.

We also started the Scottish Prisoners yDNA Study for the descendants of the Scottish prisoners of war. It now has 177 members and is headed by John Cleary of the Scottish DNA Project, which has over 11,365 members.

All who are descendants of, or, have an interest in the Battle of Dunbar or Battle of Worcester Scottish POW are welcome to join this effort.

Our Leadership

Webmaster and Administrator
, as of 04 September 2020
Descendant of James McCall
Descendant of John Cowan
Descendant of George Darling (possible)

Teresa Rust
Founder and Administrator, 11 April 2013 – 03 September 2020
Executive Director, 03 September 2018 – 03 September 2020
Descendant of John Hamilton
Descendant of John Magoon
Wife of Brad Rust, a descendant of Duncan Stewart

David Dunbar
Executive Board, President
Chieftain – Clan Dunbar Society, Inc.
Descendant of Robert Dunbar of Hingham Massachusetts

Margaret Curry
Executive Board, Secretary
Descendant of Henry Merrow

Sue Raymond
Board Member, Descendants and Researchers Editor
Social Media Coordinator
Descendant of Henry Merrow

Gail Watts
Board Member, Events Coordinator
Descendant of George Gray

Chip Grant
Board Member, Research Coordinator
Descendant of Peter Grant

Steven Denmark
Board Member, Resources Coordinator
Descendant of Patrick Denmark