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Today, Londonderry, New Hampshire, is one of a number of New England towns whose name reflects the settlement of migrants from Ulster in the region during the eighteenth century. Indeed, place names are today probably the most conspicuous legacy of the Scots-Irish settlement, since ‘the Derry folk who transplanted … being too few in number [to maintain their identity], were either swallowed up by the expanding Puritan colonies … or became loosely scattered through the frontiers of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.’42 Yet, the legacy of the ‘Great Migration’ of 1718 went beyond the founding of Londonderry.

Matthew Thornton, who signed the Declaration of Independence on behalf of New Hampshire, was on one of the ‘five ships’ of 1718 and worked in Londonderry as a doctor.43 And the legacy of 1718 continues to resonate down to the modern day: James McGregor’s great-great-great-great-great-great-grandson is Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts.44


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42 McCourt (1999), p. 303.
43 Ford (1915), p. 229.
44 Nashua Telegraph, 18 July 2004,