172nd St. Andrew's Ball Celebrates One of Montreal's Greatest Scots

    MONTREAL, Nov. 15 /CNW Telbec/ - This year the St-Andrew's Society has
invited the great-great grandson of Lord Strathcona as the guest of honour for
the 172nd St. Andrew's Ball, to be held Saturday, November 24. The Hon. Andrew
B. Howard, son of the 4th Baron Strathcona, and his wife Mrs. Kate Howard (née
Oldfield) will be joining us for this celebration of Montreal's Scottish
    The Stratchona line's fortunes are inextricably linked with the history
of Canada and of Montreal. Andrew's great-great grandfather, Sir Donald A.
Smith left Scotland in 1838 to come to Montreal, the financial centre of Lower
Canada and first worked as a clerk's apprentice for the Hudson's Bay Company
in Lachine. Although Smith's association with the HBC lasted 75 years, he is
much better known as a railway pioneer. As one of the visionaries and founders
of the Canadian Pacific Railway, his steadfast persistence, along with that of
his cousin George Stephen, is in no small part responsible for the completion
and success of the railway that is credited with making Canada the nation it
is today - stretching form sea-to-sea. When Smith drove the "last spike" at
Craiglachie, B.C. on November 7, 1885 he sealed his enduring place in Canadian
    In 1886, Queen Victoria knighted Donald Smith, who took the title Lord
Strathcona. His connection to Montreal continued, serving as an MP for
Montreal West and becoming a major benefactor of the growing city's
institutions. In 1833, Lord Strathcona gifted more than $1,000,000 to buy the
land for and found the Royal Victoria Hospital. In 1886 he helped found the
Royal Victoria College for Women. He was also a major patron of McGill
University, Trafalgar School and the YMCA as well as other worthy projects
that still play an important role in the fabric of our modern city.
    "The participation of a Strathcona descendant in the St. Andrew's Ball is
even more appropriate given that the first Lord Strathcona was a life member
of the St. Andrew's society - serving as Vice President, President, and as
past president on the finance committee up to his death in 1914," explains the
Society's First Vice President and ball chairperson Peter McAuslan.
    Tickets for the St. Andrew's ball can be purchased by contacting
Ms. Norma King at the Society office (514-842-2030 or nking@standrews.qc.ca).
Attire for the evening is Highland formal or formal evening dress.

    The St. Andrew's Society of Montreal was founded in 1835. The Society's
central focus over the years has been to preserve and celebrate Scottish
culture, traditions and customs through events such as the St. Andrew's Ball,
the Robbie Burns Supper, Highland Games and numerous other events. The Society
has always had a charitable vocation as well - assisting persons of Scottish
birth or descent who are in need, and also to grant educational aid to
qualified students of Scottish ancestry by means of bursaries and
scholarships. In the present day the Society is an active supporter of the Old
Brewery Mission, The Black Watch and 78th Fraser Regiments, as well as
providing scholarships to deserving students. The Society welcomes new members
whether you are a Scot or a lover of things Scottish. To find out more about
the Society or to become a member, visit our web site at www.standrews.qc.ca
or call us at (514) 842-2030.

For further information:

For further information: Margo Pollock, (514) 939-3060,

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