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William Austin Macveigh Esquire

Born in Ireland William rose to Senior Partner in his merchant company in Dundee which specialised in the Spanish yarn trade. After settling in Dundee he became well known with a long and honourable reputation in commercial circles in Dundee.

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Personal details and history

Full name

William Austin Macveigh

Date of birth


Place of birth

Co Monaghan, Ireland[1]



Marital status


Name of spouse

Margaret Toner[2]


Twin daughters Mary Vinancia[3] and Theresa Easter[4]; William Joseph[5]; Beatrice Augusta[6]; Grace Josephine[7]; Margaret Baptista [8]

Home address

Mid Street
Dundee 1861-1864

44 Forebank
Dundee 1864-1865

44 Bucklemaker Wynd
Dundee 1865-1868

Tayview Terrace
Fife 1869-1881

West Ferry
Dundee 1882-1886

Age at death:

47 years[10]

Place of death:

Dunella, West Ferry[10]

Date of death:



Western Cemetery, Dundee[11]

Affiliations, clubs, offices and related subscribers

Religious affiliation

Roman Catholic[2]

Political affiliation


Clubs / societies

The Edinburgh Angus Club[12] Sponsored the Macveigh prize for the greatest number of trout caught by members of the Dundee Angling Club in 1879 and 1880[13][14]

Public offices

• Member of the Bonnet Maker Trade[15] • Candidate for Municipal Elections[16] • Member of The Nine Trades[17] • Croupier at the Glamis Club[18] • A seat on The Property and Esplanade Committee of The Town Council[19] • An Assessor in the Dundee Guildry Incorporation[20]

Related subscribers

Career and worklife


Flax and Yarn Merchant;[9] Senior Partner in company[21]


Part owner/shareholder[22]

Place of work

William started work as a clerk at the offices of Charles Thiebalt 1864-1868; Keenan & Macveigh 1869 to death in 1885; Macveigh, Macintyre & Co[21]

Work address

Keenan & Macveigh, merchants
27 Cowgate
Dundee 1864 to 1865

Keenan & Macveigh, flax and yarn merchants
Dundee 1866 to 1868

Macveigh, Macintyre & Co, merchants
21 Meadowside
Dundee 1869 to 1870

Macveigh, Macintyre & Co, merchants
21 Albert Square
Dundee 1871 to 1879

Macveigh, Macintyre & Co, merchants
104 Commercial Street
Dundee 1880 to 1888[9]

Career to date:

William started work in Dundee as a clerk in the office of Charles Thiebault. Thereafter he started a business with Thomas Keenan under the name of Keenan and Macveigh, which changed its name about 1869 to Macveigh, McIntyre & Co.[9][21] Local newspapers of the time show that William conducted very successful export businesses, mainly in the Spanish yarn trade, also importers of casks of red wine and bales of jute. At the time of his death[22] William held shares in o Dundee Gem Line Steam Shipping Company o East Coast Salvage Company Limited o Dundee Corn Exchange and Public Hall Association Limited o Dundee Theatre and Opera House Company Limited o Victoria Jute Company Limited

More information

William’s Life

William Austin Macveigh was born in Co Monaghan, Ireland circa 1837/8[23] [1] to Hugh Macveigh, a farmer, and Rose nee Murphy.[2]

William’s birth in Irish records has not yet been located.

The 1881 census has not yet been located, probably hiding under a “creative” transcription/enumeration of  Macveigh! (note that in the 1871 census the family have been recorded as McLeish!)

William, a philanthropist, in addition to subscribing £50 to the Albert Institute also gave generously to worthy causes in his own name and from his company, such as the Dundee Royal Infirmary,[24] Tay Bridge Disaster Relief Fund,[25] the Widows and Children of the Seamen of the Culzean.[26]

William died on 19th November 1885, aged, 47, from erysipelas at his home, Dunella, West Ferry,[10] leaving a widow and 3 daughters.[22]

See attached image for rent of property of Dunella. Presume Dunella Lodge, 35 Albany Terrace, Dundee may have been his house, thus giving an insight into his wealth and living standards.

William’s Grave

Martin Allan from Dundee City Archives has been in pursuit of William Macveigh’s burial but unfortunately without success.

The Burials Department have been unable to find any record of a corresponding burial in either Barnhill, Eastern, Western or Balgay cemeteries. Martin also checked the archive registers for the New Howff, St Andrew’s and St Peter’s burial grounds, Broughty Ferry St Aidan’s and Roodyards without success.

We eventually located William’s place of burial through his wife’s maiden name, Toner.

Lair Number 5 a,b,c. Western Cemetery, Dundee.[11]

Inscription reads:-

Erected by William Austin MacVeigh & Margaret Toner in memory of their beloved children Teresa Easter eldest twin daughter 4.4.1861 – 10.7.1862. Margaret Baptista 24.6.1866 – 6.8.1969. William Joseph 8.5.1862 – 10.8.1869. Of your charity pray for the souls of the above William Austin MacVeigh d. at Dunella, West Ferry 19.12.1885 aged 47y. Requiescant in pace.

William’s month of death seems to be an error on the headstone.

Lair and Headstone–see attached images

Family Tree

The Halpin Family Tree provides further information on the family.[27]

William’s daughter Grace married James Connolly in Ireland on 19-02-1889. They had 7 children in 15 years – the first 5 having been born in Ireland and the remaining 2 in Canada. Grace and her family arrived in Canada in 1901. She died on 03-07-1948 in Vancouver, British Columbia at the of 83 years.[27]





  1. 1871 Census Scotland. Dundee. 431/4/14. ScotlandsPeople website.
  2. Statutory Record. Dundee. Marriage. 2 July 1860. 282/1204. ScotlandsPeople website.
  3. Statutory Record. Dundee. Birth. 4 April 1861. Family Search website.
  4. Statutory Record. Dundee. Birth. 4 April 1861. Family Search website.
  5. Statutory Record. Dundee. Birth. 8 May 1862. Family Search website.
  6. Statutory Record. Dundee. Birth. 20 August 1863. Family Search website.
  7. Statutory Record. Dundee. Birth. 9 March 1865. Family Search website.
  8. Statutory Record. Dundee. Birth. 27 June 1866. Family Search website.
  9. Post Office Directories Dundee, 1861-1888. National Library of Scotland.
  10. Statutory Register. Montrose. Death. 19 November 1885. 282/4 969. ScotlandsPeople website.
  11. Western Cemetery Burial Lair Records. Dundee. Toner and Macveigh. Friends of Dundee City Archives Website.
  12. Dundee Courier, Wednesday 18 October 1865. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  13. Dundee Advertiser, Tuesday 26 August 1879. Article.British Newspaper Archive.
  14. Dundee People’s Journal, Saturday 28 August 1880. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  15. Dundee Courier, Saturday 17 October 1863. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  16. Dundee Advertiser, Monday 29 October 1866. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  17. Dundee Advertiser, Tuesday 4 August 1868. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  18. Dundee Evening Telegraph, Wednesday 29 January 1879. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  19. Dundee Courier, Friday 23 November 1883. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  20. Dundee Courier, Tuesday 27 October 1885. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  21. Dundee Evening Telegraph, Friday 20 November 1885. Obituary. British Newspaper Archive.
  22. Wills and Testaments. Dundee Sheriff Court. 1886. SC45/31/36. ScotlandsPeople website.
  23. 1861 Census Scotland. Dundee. 282/1 16/29. ScotlandsPeople website.
  24. Dundee Courier, Friday 27 April 1866. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  25. Dundee Courier, Tuesday 13 January 1880. British Newspaper Archive.
  26. Dundee Advertiser, Tuesday 20 December 1881. Article. British Newspaper Archive.
  27. Ancestry Website, Halpin Family Tree.


Thanks to team leaders, Larry & Tom whose guidance, expertise and vast knowledge of Dundee made this research a success. Thanks also to Martin Allan from Dundee City Archives who searched for William McVeigh's burial.

The information above about William Austin Macveigh has been collated from a range of digital and hard copy sources. To the best of our knowledge it is correct but if you are relying on any information from our website for the purpose of your own research we would advise you to follow up the sources to your own satisfaction. If you are aware of an inaccuracy in our text please do not hesitate to notify us through our Contact page.