Clan Donald Magazine No13 (1995) Online
Messages From The Presidents of the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Societies.
The Clan Donald Society of Edinburgh (1891)
Since the publication of the last number of "Clan Donald Magazine"
the Edinburgh Society has celebrated its centenary and continued to
carry out a wide variety of engagements up to the present time.
The Society was honoured by the Lord Provost and Council of the City
of Edinburgh on 10th May 1991, in recognition of its centenary, with
a civic reception which was attended by four chiefs, Lord Macdonald,
Sir Ian Macdonald of Sleat, the Chief of Glengarry and the Captain
of Clanranald, and over 100 Society members and guests, including
Ellice McDonald Jr CBE Hon., Donald S. Macdonald, the Canadian High
Commissioner and Ian H. Macdonald OBE, Chairman of the Clan Donald
Lands Trust. Donald M. Macdonald, President of the Society thanked
the Lord Provost's representative, Councillor Lazarowicz for the
reception, while Ian H. Macdonald presented a quaich to the Council
to mark the occasion. A Centenary Dinner and Dance was held the
following evening in the Roxburghe Hotel.
On 2nd July 1991, the six weeks voyage of the Aileach, replica Lord
of the Isles Galley, from Ireland to the Hebrides was completed when
the vessel, with Andrew Macdonald of Boisdale, Clanranald's second
son, who had acted as sailing master throughout the voyage, arrived
On 13th February 1992, the commemoration of the 300th anniversary of
the Massacre of Glencoe began with a requiem in the church of St.
The celebrant was the Most Rev. George K.B. Henderson, Bishop of
Argyll, assisted by our member, the Rev. Kenneth E. Wigston, Rector
of St. Mary's. A congregation of around 200 took part in the
worship. The congregation proceeded to the bridge at Upper Carnoch,
from which the procession set off, in drenching rain, for the
Memorial where the wreath-laying ceremony was performed by Lord
Macdonald, High Chief of the Clan. Charles MacFarlane, Glenfinnan
played the lament: The Massacre of Glencoe on the pipes. The
attendance was estimated at around 300 including representatives of
the media. The march and ceremony were later shown on television. A
plaque to mark the restoration of the monument site was unveiled at
a special ceremony the day before by Mr Ellice McDonald, Jr CBE Hon.
In late 1993 the coat-of arms and lettering on the Memorial Cross in
Glencoe were restored by Mr Arnold Buret who had been engaged by the
Society to carry out this very necessary work of restoration. The
cost of this work was met partly by the Glencoe Memorial Maintenance
Fund, held by the Society and from private donations as a result of
a financial appeal through the Newsletter.
In the spring of 1994, members of the Society met members of the
Thome Family Association of Sweden at a joint function in the
Roxburghe Hotel. The family are descended from a common ancestor,
Thomas, son of Anders Hansson, who, according to the family
tradition, was a son of Angus Og, younger brother of Sir James
MacDonald of Dunnyveg, last chief of the Clan Donald South.
On 20th August, my wife and I, as Honorary Secretary and President
respectively, represented the Society at the Clan Donald Tent at the
Glenfinnan Games when the honorary chieftain was Mr Rory MacDonald,
Spean Bridge, son of Major Andrew MacDonald of Blarour. The tent had
been booked by the Clan Donald Society of Glasgow and was manned by
our two societies and members of the Clan Donald Visitor Centre
During the year (1994) an appeal was launched by the Society for
funds to enable a full refurbishment of the sandstone monument at
the grave of Major General Sir Hector Archibald MacDonald KCB DSO
ADC LL.D., in the Dean Cemetery, Edinburgh, to be undertaken. This
work was completed in the late autumn and we are pleased to be able
to announce that the sandstone obelisk and copper bust of Sir Hector
have been restored to their original condition and look most
impressive. We wish to thank all those who contributed to the appeal
fund and in partiuclarthc President and Directors of Clan Donald
Foundation Inc., of the USA, our member Mr Ellice McDonald Jr CBE
Hon., of Delaware, USA, the Trustees of the Gordon Highlanders
Regimental Museum, Aberdeen and the Trustees of the Invergarry
Castle Trust, without whose support the work could not have been
carried out. It is hoped that a rededication ceremony will be held
in the near future to mark the restoration of this memorial to such
a distinguished soldier and member of our clan.
With membership being maintained at a healthy level, we are
confident that our Society will continue to flourish.
Norman H. MacDonald
Clan Donald Society of Glasgow
Six years after the celebration of its beginnings with a grand
centenary dinner, Glasgow's Clan Donald Society is unfortunately not
without concern about declining membership.
Its office-bearers are encouraged, however, by the fact that such
problems have occurred in the past and have not proved fatal.
Convinced of the joy that is still to be found in Clan Donald - as
in the ancient slogan - members believe there is no reason why the
society should not go on from strength to strength.
One of the society's previous difficult times, indeed was within
Live years of its formation - exactly 100 years ago - when
enthusiasm for clan affairs was probably at a height seldom equalled
since. Whatever the particular trouble at that time, a new impetus
arose out of a "resuscitation meeting."
Within years, the society was in such good heart that it was
providing its own monthly publication circulating widely throughout
the land and demonstrating publicly every evidence of vigour and
Clan Donald, Glasgow, works towards the possibility of such
revivification - although perhaps not expecting it to be an
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