The mid 1700's were a time of change and upheaval. This was especially true in Scotland. The clan system was no longer the strong glue holding people to the Highlands. Changes were shifting people not just from one country to another, but from one continent to another. Opportunities were closing in one country and opening in another.
The Earl of Selkirk was a well-traveled young man. He sympathized with his countrymen. He wanted to help those who had been forced from their homes by getting them a new place to live.
Selkirk purchased a block of land in present day Manitoba from the Hudson's Bay Company (HBC). There he hoped to build a permanent settlement.
Selkirk's plan was to have farms with homes and barns already set up before the settlers arrived. He also planned to have fields and gardens planted and ready for harvest when the people got there.