Ray MacRae Memorial

Four generations of MacRaes
Standing – Christine MacRae, Emma Wright nee MacRae, Joshua MacRae, Paul MacRae, Mary (MacRae), Ray Hynes. Front – Ewen MacRae and Keith MacRae.

[Click photo to enlarge]

Raymond Edmund MacRae 1942 - 2012

Raymond Edmund MacRae, ‘Ray’ to his family and friends, passed away at 10am on Thursday 20th December, 2012, in Orange District Hospital after a two year fight with cancer. His funeral was held on 24th December, Christmas Eve in the Catholic Church in Orange. A large number of family, friends and past workmates gathered to farewell a man who had a zest for life and dearly wanted to beat his affliction. It was not to be and Ray realised this, amazing many with his acceptance to move from this world to the next.

Whether you were a MacRae or McRae or any other way it may be spelt you were family. I first met Ray when he was doing some family history.

Ray’s nephew Mark Saddler read the eulogy at the service and much of the following information is from Mark’s eulogy.

Who was Raymond Edward MacRae and where did he come from?

Ceud Mile Failte

Ceud Mile Failte ( A Hundred Thousand Welcomes)Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland

Alan McRae
"Blue Wren Cottage"
PO Box 151
Bathurst NSW 2975

Tel. 61 02 63315404

Clan Macrae meeting

Event Date and Time: 

Thursday, 21 August 2014 - 1:00pm

Our next meeting will be held this Wednesday 21st August, 2014, on the 2nd floor Conference Room at Combined Services RSL Club, 5 – 7 Barrack Street, Sydney (not far from Wynyard Railway Station) at 1pm. Note – some members attending have lunch in the bistro at the club from 12 noon.

Meetings are held on the third Wednesday – February, May, August and November – at the location above unless notified otherwise.

It would be great to see you there. Alan McRae FAIHA President. 02 63315404 amcrae@lisp.com.au

Clan MacRae Bathurst Highland Gathering and Dinner

Event Date and Time: 

Sunday, 23 March 2014 - 10:00am

The Clan MacRae Bathurst Highland Gathering and Dinner this year will take place on Sunday 23rd March, 2014.  Please come and join the various members, relations and friends of the Clan MacRae Society of Australasia and New Zealand for this special day at the Scots School at Bathurst from 10am. Our Clan marquee will be in the main ring. Note - You don’t have to come all day, you can come after lunch and then stay for the dinner in the evening if you wish.

Mudgee 15th and 16th February

Event Date and Time: 

Saturday, 15 February 2014 - 5:00pm to Sunday, 16 February 2014 - 10:00am

Reminder - MacRae  Gathering  Mudgee

Saturday 15th & Sunday 16th February 2014

An informal get-to-gether of the MacRaes (all spellings) and /or their descendants will take place at the Waratah Hotel, 49-51 Church St, (corner Mortimer Street) Mudgee on Saturday 15th February, 2014, at 5pm for our AGM (if you want to) and afterwards from 6.30pm for dinner on the hotel’s picturesque verandah. Just order your meal (Australian or Chinese) and pay for it at the time. No need for kilts just casual dress.

We have added some other activities/suggestions you might like to participate in – Saturday morning – you can visit the Mudgee Markets and have coffee in one of the many cafes.  Saturday afternoon – visit an underground winery (just 2km out of Mudgee) which has a selection of gourmet foods and wine and tastings from some of the small local winemakers. Next door is the Fairview gallery and coffee shop for coffee/tea and scones. On Sunday morning join us for breakfast from 9am at Christine Volk’s home, 7 Oakfield Close, Mudgee NSW 2850, before you leave.

Clan MACRAE attends Scottish Highland Gathering in Canberra 2013

Reference Event: 

For the third year in a row the Clan MacRae Society of Australia and New Zealand attended the traditional Scottish Highland Gathering held on Kambah Oval in Kett Street, Kambah in Canberra, in for the first time, the most beautiful weather. This year’s event was part of the Centenary of Canberra celebrations.

This year’s Scottish Highland Gathering was again hosted by the Canberra College of Piping & Drumming.Clan ACRAE marquee Canberra 12 October 2013

Photo (left, click to enlarge)

- Clan MacRae Society of Australia and New Zealand marquee.

Clan President Alan McRae and Clan members erected the marquee on Saturday 12th October, 2013. We set up our MacRae banners, flags and a display of MacRae family and Scottish artefacts going back some 600 years.

The whole circumference of Kambah Oval was surrounded by numerous stalls selling food, Scottish and Celtic items, re-enactments groups as well as the colourful marquees of the numerous Clans. What a picture they painted their flags and banners blowing in the slight refreshing breeze.

Photo – Massed bands for the Opening Ceremony

Festivities began at 10am and went through until around 5pm under the bluest skies around for this mass celebration of Scottish and Celtic heritage. At 10.30am the various clans assembled to take part in the official opening by His Excellency Mr Michael Bryce, Chieftain of the Day, in front of a large crowd which included many children.

Photo (click to enlarge) - Federation Guard Precision Drill Team

I had the honour of being the Clan MacRae’s representative as we marched between the ranks of the massed pipes and drums as the bands criss-crossed the oval to await the opening formalities and address. Part of the opening ceremony was a superb precision drill team demonstration by the Federation Guard made up of Australian Army, R.A.A.F. and Navy personnel.

Clan MacRae gathering at Albury 2013

Event Date and Time: 

Saturday, 19 October 2013 - 10:00am to Sunday, 20 October 2013 - 5:00pm



Saturday 19th and

Sunday 20th OCTOBER, 2013

We are hoping the selection of Albury as a venue for our Clan Gathering will give members from both Victoria and New South Wales an opportunity to meet. Of course all members of our world-wide Clan are welcome should you be in the vicinity at this time.

The venue for Saturday’s Afternoon Meet & Greet with a light afternoon tea and the evening Dinner is the Best Western Hovell Tree Motel, on the corner of Hovell Street and Wodonga Place, Albury. There will be an informal, extra-ordinary meeting when members can put forward their ideas for the betterment of the Society. A member of each family will be invited to give an outline of his/her family’s history. You may find another cousin in the room! Perhaps you have old photos or documents to share. A light afternoon tea will be served. Room Hire and Afternoon Tea = $15 Time: 2.30 - 4.30 p.m.

On Saturday Evening a Dinner will be held in one of the Motel’s Conference Rooms. Time 6.30 – 10.30p.m.


Clan MacRae Society attending 2013 Canberra Scottish Highland Gathering

Event Date and Time: 

Saturday, 12 October 2013 - 10:00am to 5:00pm

Once again the Clan MacRae Society of Australia and New Zealand will have their clan marquee at the Canberra Scottish Highland Gathering taking place on Saturday 5th October, 2013. The traditional Scottish Highland Gathering is being held at Kambah Oval in Kett Street, Kambah. There is no charge to attend and it is open from 10am to 5pm.

Finding Flora

Story content by: 

Member Allan Smith like most of us has been tracing his McRae ancestry and seeks your assistance in tracing a photo of his Great Grandmother’s sister, Flora McRae.

In the book “MACRAES DOWN UNDER” page 3-1 Allan is a descendant of Flora McRae of Auchtertyre Ross and John MacRae of Sallachy Ross.


Story content by: 

John McRaePhoto – John MacRae licensee of the Sir Colin Campbell Inn.

As President of the Clan MacRae Society of Australia and New Zealand I was fascinated to find that a number of MacRaes/McRaes turned up in my recent research concerning Ben Hall and his gang and other associated bushrangers around the 1860s.

On 25th September, 1863, two events took place. Firstly, Ben Hall and his gang robbed Mr. John Loudon’s station “Grubbenbong’ which was situated some 15 miles from Carcoar, near Bathurst. Loudon had arrived in the southern colony in 1841 and later operated a flour mill at Kings Plains just out of Bathurst by 1848. The discovery of gold in 1851 increased his business and with the help of his wife Helen they were able to purchase “Grubbenbong” in 1857. Hall’s gang stayed for a meal with their captives and talked till the early hours.

The other event started when two men who had been arrested at the same time as Thomas Frederick Lowry, another bushranger, were set free from the court in Goulburn. Tom Lowry had held up the Mudgee Mail Coach on the 29th August, 1861, and stole a haul of bank notes.

John MacRae’s name was also associated with the Mudgee Mail Coach holdup. Some time after the holdup one of the stolen Australian Joint Stock Bank’s notes from the robbery turned up in Goulburn and an investigation found it had been paid to James Ross by John MacRae, who was the licensee of either the Buck’s Head Inn or the Sir Colin Campbell Inn at the time. Ross had then paid the note on to James Marsden who had banked it in Goulburn.

Clan Macrae meeting -- November

Event Date and Time: 

Wednesday, 20 November 2013 - 12:00pm


November meeting -  

Our November 2013 meeting will be held Wednesday 20th November, 2013, on the 2nd floor Conference Room at Combined Services RSL Club, 5 – 7 Barrack Street, Sydney (not far from Wynyard Railway Station) at 1pm. Note – some members attending have lunch in the bistro at the club from 12 noon.

Clan MacRae Meeting - August

Event Date and Time: 

Wednesday, 21 August 2013 - 12:00pm






Our next meeting will be held this Wednesday 21st August 2013, on the 2nd floor Conference Room at Combined Services RSL Club, 5 – 7 Barrack Street, Sydney (not far from Wynyard Railway Station) at 1pm. Note – some members attending have lunch in the bistro at the club from 12 noon.

Clan MacRae Meeting

Event Date and Time: 

Wednesday, 15 May 2013 - 12:00pm




Our next meeting will be held this Wednesday 15th May, 2013, on the 2nd floor Conference Room at Combined Services RSL Club, 5 – 7 Barrack Street, Sydney (not far from Wynyard Railway Station) at 1pm. Note – some members attending have lunch in the bistro at the club from 12 noon.

Gordon Charles McRae 20 Dec 1935 - 31 January 2013

Gordon Charles McRae was born on the 20th of December 1935 to David and Alice Elizabeth McRae in the Quairading hospital. December in Quairading (Western Australia) is always hot and December 20th would have been no exception, but Dave and Allie, who they became fondly known as, wouldn’t have noticed, because for them, Christmas this year had come early.

Gordon was their 5th child – John was the eldest, followed by Mary, Cynthia (dec), Brian, then Gordon and Pattie. At the time, the family were living at North Yoting and before long, schooling commenced at the North Yoting Primary School. He has many memories of traveling to and from school with his siblings on a horse and sulky as well as by bike. He recalled few memories of schooling – maybe it just didn’t matter because the farm was his classroom. One morning he left his brother Brian to catch the bus on his own, deciding to wag school for the day. He thought he would wait the day out at the bus stop, so he sat in the shade of a strainer post. Unbeknownst to him, his mother saw him and wondered how long he would last. When the sun reached its midday zenith, the strainer post was unforgiving and the shade had gone….and so was he…back home to mum with his tail firmly between his legs. Later on, he moved to the Quairading School where he made many friends. There he developed his lifelong love of sport, which stayed with him for the rest of his life. Those were the days of steel sprigs on football boots, bitumen wickets and sand greens….and at that time of his life he never knew any different as he was having the time of his life.

Flight Sergeant Keith McRae Smith RAAF, 226 SQUADRON RAF

Story content by: 

Keith McRae SmithA number of years ago upon visiting the Australian War Memorial in Canberra I made enquiries as to the circumstances surrounding the death of my great-uncle Keith McRae Smith. All that they could tell me was that he was a Flight Sergeant in the RAAF and as a pilot was serving with 226 Squadron RAF. As to his death all they could say was that he was killed in an air battle over France on the 8th November 1943 and that was that.

Since then I have researched defence archives and after receiving immeasurable help from members of the 2nd Tactical Air Force and Medium Bombers Association I have been able to piece together this story of my late great-uncle.

On the 16th of November 1943 Colin Smith Jr of Coonamble, New South Wales, Australia received a telegram advising him that his brother, Flight Sergeant Keith McRae Smith RAAF then serving with 226 Squadron RAF was listed as ‘missing on air operations’.

Keith was born on the 21st of July 1922 the 13th child of Colin and Mary Smith at ‘Flodden Field’, a sheep station near Coonamble, New South Wales. Keith’s mother, Mary Isabella Smith nee Hall was the daughter of James Hall and Christina Mary McRae. Christina McRae was the daughter of Christopher and Catherine McRae and a member of the large McRae family of Merriwa, New South Wales.

After failing to complete his Intermediate examinations Keith left school at age 15 and lying about his age applied to join the RAAF. He was however rejected for service and soon found work as a general labourer and station hand in the local district. In the years preceding the outbreak of the war first Keith’s mother and later father died from illness and when war was declared in September 1939 he was working as a mechanic in a sawmill at Gwabegar, New South Wales.


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