Clan Mackay Society of the USA

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Magda Margaret Mackay Smith 
June 20 1914 - July 29 2010

At 96 years of age, Magda was the Matriarch of the Council body of the Clan Mackay Society of Scotland.

Introduction by Fiona, Magda's daughter. 
Mum took part in almost all the trips in Scotland and was very
active during the 1977 International Gathering of Clans, the 1988 Centenary of re-establishment of the Clan Mackay Society and the 2006 bicentenary of the original founding of the Clan Mackay Society--originally as a friendly society to support widows and orphans.

 Magda was born on 20 June 1914 in Lerwick Shetland to John Mackay, from Carloway, Isle of Lewis, and Catherine Morrison of Lerwick, Shetland. The family moved to Leith– when she was 10 months old – but shortly after their arrival, John’s brother Angus was one of the first to be gassed in World War 1 and died, and he felt he had to join up so his young family returned to Shetland. 

 John took up his Post Office Engineer work again, this time posted to Corstorphine, Edinburgh. The family thrived in Corstorphine and Magda formed lifelong friends and began her connection with St Ninian’s Church.This happy Corstorphine life was punctuated by long summer holidays in Lerwick every second year, and later, contact with the Lewis family and friends, for whom she felt an immediate bond. There were also holidays to various lighthouse locations, wherever a lighthouse keeper relative and family lived,  giving her a wide knowledge of Scotland. Hostelling holidays with school friends extended this. And at every opportunity she was off to Glasgow to spend time with family and friends there.

 She attended Corstorphine Primary School, finishing 2nd in her class and moved to Boroughmuir High School. She had a good grounding in commercial subjects at Torphichen Street Commercial College and worked happily for 10 years for a Chartered Accountant’s in Rutland Square – travelling to and from by train – knitting and chatting during the 8 minute journey, everyone dashing back and forth for lunch. She also attended ceilidhs and the Clan Mackay meetings with her father , as well as playing tennis and socialising with her Corstorphine base. 

Magda was a member of the Clan Mackay Society from at least 1930 (membership card in her papers). She was active on the social committee before and during World War 2 and an active member of 
the Council from at least her return to Edinburgh in 1952.

A good life – thoroughly lived - she died peacefully at home on 29th July 2010 with her daughters at her side.

With many special thanks to E. David McGee, Former S.E. Regional V.P. Clan Mackay Society , USA
and his wife Jana for supplying all the information and pictures in this tribute to Magda.


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