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Scrapbook in honor of John William Mackay

 Collection
Identifier: AC 0511
A scrapbook presented to the University of Nevada by Clarence Hungerford Mackay on October 23, 1909. Includes an 1878 portrait of John W. Mackay by Alex Cabanel, three illuminated pages about the dedication ceremony for the Mackay Mines Building and the Gutzon Borglum Mackay Statue at the University on June 10, 1908, commencement programs, photographs, newspaper articles, and a poem by Katherine Duer Mackay, the wife of Clarence Mackay. With a customized wooden Tiffany container.

Dates

  • 1908

Restrictions on Access

There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.

Extent

0.5 Cubic Feet (1 scrapbook of 95 pages housed in a wooden container)

Abstract

A scrapbook presented to the University of Nevada by Clarence Hungerford Mackay on October 23, 1909. Includes an 1878 portrait of John W. Mackay by Alex Cabanel, three illuminated pages about the dedication ceremony for the Mackay Mines Building and the Gutzon Borglum Mackay Statue at the University on June 10, 1908, commencement programs, photographs, newspaper articles, and a poem by Katherine Duer Mackay, the wife of Clarence Mackay. With a customized wooden Tiffany container.

Biographical Note

John W. Mackay was born in Dublin, Ireland, on November 28, 1831. He came to New York with his family when he was nine. His formal education ended when he went to work at age eleven after the death of his father. After completing an apprenticeship as a shipbuilder, he went to California in 1851. After eight years as a placer miner in the Sierra region, he went to Virginia City in the Nevada Territory with Jack O'Brien in 1859. By 1863 he was part owner in four small claims. His bonanza firm partners included James Graham Fair, James Clair Flood and William Shoney O'Brien. His part-ownership of the Kentuck mine marked the beginning of his great success as a silver miner of the Comstock Lode. A significant amount of silver was struck in 1874 in their Consolidated Virginia mine. The partners, who became known as the Bonanza Kings, diversified their business interests by establishing the Pacific Mill and Mining Company, the Pacific Wood, Lumber and Flume Company, and the Virginia & Gold Hill Water Company. Later Mackay was president of the Commercial Cable Company, the Postal Telegraph Company, and the Pacific Commercial Cable Company, director of the Canadian Pacific and Southern Pacific Railroads and of the Nevada Bank in San Francisco.

In 1866, John W. Mackay married the widow Marie-Louise Antoinette Hungerford Bryant and later adopted Eva, the surviving daughter of her first marriage. The Mackays had two sons: John William (Willie, 1870-1895), and Clarence Hungerford (1874-1938). When John W. Mackay died in London on July 20, 1902, it was speculated that his estate was worth somewhere between thirty to sixty million dollars. After spending most of her married life in Europe, Marie Mackay died on Long Island, New York, in 1928. Although brought up in Europe, Clarence Mackay took a lifelong interest in northern Nevada, becoming the first major philanthropist for the University of Nevada. The Mackay School of Mines and the statue of John Mackay by sculptor Gutzon Borglum are among the Mackay gifts to the University. June 10, 1908, the day of the unveiling of the Mackay statue on campus, was proclaimed a public holiday in Nevada by D. S. Dickerson, Lieutenant and Acting Governor.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Clarence H. Mackay, Received: October 23, 1909.
Title
Scrapbook in honor of John William Mackay
Status
completed
Description rules
dacs

Repository Details

Part of the University of Nevada, Reno. University Archives Repository

Contact:
Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center
1664 N. Virginia St.
University of Nevada, Reno
Reno NV 89557-0322 USA
775-682-5665
775-682-5724 (Fax)