Their first leader was John MacDonald MacCormick, who resigned from the party in 1942 after failing to persuade his fellow nationalists to support devolution rather than full independence.
In 1979 a devolution referendum was held in Scotland. The electorate were offered the opportunity to vote for or against the setting up of a Scottish Assembly. The final result was a rejection of the proposal. However, in 1997, a second devolution referendum was held. On this occasion, the electorate voted in favour of devolution, and a devolved Scottish Parliament was established in 1999.
On September 18th, 2014, an independence referendum took place in Scotland. The Scottish people were given the opportunity to vote either for a fully independent Scotland or to remain as part of the United Kingdom. The final result was that 55.3% of the electorate voted to retain Scotland's union with the rest of the UK, while 44.7% voted for full independence.