Elgin heritage traced as part of Californian TV host and former Disney executive's television show
Easier access to your trusted, local news. Subscribe to a digital package and support local news publishing.
A CALIFORNIAN television show host and former Disney executive travelled to Elgin recently to film the latest episode of his show.
Pat Pattison, host of 'Best of California with Pat Pattison', travelled to Scotland to discover more about his grandfather William Stephen Davie who inmigrated to the USA from Elgin in 1881.
Pat met with Elgin Library Heritage Officer Scott Reid during his visit. There, he discovered that his great grandfather was a hotelier, veterinary surgeon and, at one stage, a convicted criminal.
Pat's journey of discovery will be featured in the latest episode of his television show and despite some startling revelations about his Scottish heritage, the former Hollywood executive said he enjoyed his visit to his ancestral home.
"This whole thing started two years ago through Facebook really because I knew that my grandfather was from Elgin," Pat said.
"We found out that my great grandfather actually got into a lot of trouble.
"For Americans anything like this before 1890 is really a big deal.
"We want to promote Elgin because we love it over here. Everybody is so friendly.
"I come from the big city, Los Angeles, where it is a lot more hustle and bustle but everyone here just seems to be more relaxed."
Pat has worked extensively as an executive, primarily in marketing, on Hollywood productions including Star Wars Episode I and the Lord of the Rings merchandising program.
However, in the latter part of his career he has spent much of his time in front of the camera including roles in various US television shows, a stint as an extra in Angels and Demons starring Tom Hanks as well as becoming the host of his own TV show.
Part of the shoot for the latest episode of the show took place at Zed Bar and Downtown USA on Elgin High Street which was formerly the Royal Hotel - owned by Pat's great grandfather Peter Davie.
As well as being an innkeeper and veterinary surgeon, Peter Davie seemed to live a tumultuous life which saw him marry twice and spend a week in jail for assaulting a 16-year-old when he was in his mid-forties.
Peter was also ordered to pay ten shillings for the incident.
He died just before Pat's grandfather, William Davie, was born in 1857.
Pat's visit was made even more special with the accompaniment of his two daughters, Jessamyn and Liza, who he said had limited knowledge of their ties to Elgin prior to the trip.
"I just got it in my head one day that I wanted to come over," Pat added.
"You know when you're younger maybe you don't care as much about these things but when you get older I think a lot of people start to.
"It was a special deal to bring my daughters with me as well. They really know nothing about this."
Pat, who describes himself as the "proud grandson of an Elgin native", says the latest episode of his show uncovering the mysteries of his Elgin heritage will air on TV in the USA next year.
However, overseas viewers can catch the episode on YouTube.