Producer | Director
Winner RTS Scotland
Best History Documentary Award May 2017
Nominated for BAFTA Scotland
Specialist Factual Award November 2017
Nominated for best history programme award at the Celtic Media Festival May 2017
The role of Scots in shaping the concept of the American Dream is a story often celebrated but could Scottish settlers have also had a hand in America’s racist nightmare?
Scotland and the Klan
1 x 60' with Matchlight for BBC
First TX BBC Scotland 4th October 2016
Also BBC4, History Channel and others
Presented by NEIL OLIVER
Camera ALAN McLAUGHLIN
Sound GARY BLACK
Assistant prod / additional camera
Exec producer ROSS WILSON
Editor CHRIS BUCKLAND
Written, directed and produced by IAN LILLEY
Throughout the 18th Century, hundreds of thousands of Scots emigrated to America. Some believe that it was their wariness and moral certainty that significantly shaped the South into an isolated, fearful society that easily took to slave-owning when the opportunity came.
After the devastating Civil War, attitudes in the South were hardened by defeat and fear of the now-freed slaves. When six bored and bitter former Confederate officers formed a fraternal society, they drew on their Scottish background. 'Clan' turned to 'Klan' and the oldest and most feared racist hate group in America – the Ku Klux Klan – was born.
Now, well over 800 hate groups stalk the United States and Neil finishes his journey by visiting the Neo-Confederate League of the South. The League advocates a return to a separate Southern society run by what they call ‘Anglo Celts’ and Neil discovers that here in the Deep South, Scottish-ness and some old attitudes still abide.
Neil Oliver travels over two thousand miles to examine links between racism today and the Scottish settlers that first occupied America's Deep South.