Lives of the fellows

James Robertson Monro Mackie

b.21 September 1909 d.19 December 1982
MB ChB Aberd(1932) MD(1934) MRCP(1935) DPM(1949)

James Mackie graduated in medicine at the University of Aberdeen, the town in which he was born. He was the son of John Mackie (Mackie of Glenmillan), a mechanical engineer and director of John M Henderson & Sons Limited, and his wife Isabella, daughter of James Munro of the Merchant Navy.

James Mackie’s first postgraduate interest was in neurology, which was the subject of his MD thesis and won him the Fulton prize, but after various house posts at the Royal Sick Children’s Hospital, Aberdeen, the West End Hospital for Nervous Diseases, London, the Maida Vale Hospital for Epilepsy and Paralysis and the King George Hospital, Ilford, he became senior registrar to the professor of psychiatry at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary in 1947, and switched his allegiance to this field of medicine. In 1949 he was appointed deputy medical superintendent at the Dundee and District Mental Hospital, becoming a consultant psychiatrist at High Royds Hospital, Menston in Wharfedale, in 1951, where he remained until his retirement. He encouraged the trend to unlocked doors in mental hospitals, and the return of patients to the community as soon as possible.

He was a frail man and slight of stature; a man of independent means who was, however, devoted to his work and with high ethical standards. Under a rather dour exterior there was a dry sense of humour and a real generosity towards friends and colleagues. He was also fond of animals, and devoted to his cat ‘Tiberius’.

Outside medicine, his main interest lay in the study of medieval ecclesiastical architecture and Byzantine painting and sculpture. He also enjoyed Latin prose and verse of the post Augustine period. In 1947 he married Elizabeth, daughter of John Noble Cruickshank, a master tailor; she was devoted to him. They had no children.

PC Reynell
Sir Gordon Wolstenholme
Valérie Luniewska

(Volume VII, page 362)

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