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Captain Donald MacKinnon
Celebrated Mariner Son of Tiree


Organized by local residents Mary & Angus MacLean, an evening occasion to celebrate the life and achievements of Tiree's Captain Donald MacKinnon, master mariner and captain of the Taeping that won the Great Tea Race of 1866 from China to London, was held in Tiree on 12th May 2012.

Guest speakers at the celebration included Lloyd Pitcher from Australia, an authority on Captain MacKinnon and his family, and Angus MacKinnon of Troon, Ayrshire, whose particular interests are Clyde Shipbuilders Roger Steele & Sons of Greenock, Tea Clippers, and Captain Donald MacKinnon.

The guest speakers have generously provided summaries of their presentations, which can be downloaded from the table below. The summaries are preceded by a 'setting the scene' introduction and overview by Mary & Angus MacLean that was published originally in An Tirisdeach, the fortnightly newsletter from the Isle of Tiree, and is reproduced here with permission.

Appended to proceedings of the celebration in Tiree are:

4. A copy by Robin Pitcher of the black-bordered whole-page obituary in The Times, London, published in 1867, titled In Memory of Donald MacKinnon after his untimely death in South Africa, which summarizes his life and achievements; and

5. An image of Cape Town from Table Bay painted by Lt James Henry Butt in February 1867, shortly after Captain Donald MacKinnon died on board the SS Roman anchored in Table Bay.

No. Title Author(s)/Artist
1. Introduction & Overview - Captain Donald MacKinnon of the Taeping Mary & Angus MacLean
2. Captain Donald MacKinnon - Master Mariner Lloyd Pitcher
3. The Great Tea Race of 1866 Angus MacKinnon
4. In Memory of Donald MacKinnon The Times, London
(Robin Pitcher)
5. Cape Town from Table Bay, 1867 Lt James Henry Butt