Isaac MacDonald is the third eldest of four sons of Donald and Hannah (Doyle) MacDonald, all of whom have followed in the footsteps of their father and attained prominence in marine circles.
Isaac MacDonald was born near St. Catharines, Ontario, November 5, 1868 and there he attended school. At an early age he started life's work in a confectionery establishment, and learned the business thoroughly, being employed at the same for nine years, six in his native town, and three in Buffalo, N. Y., to which city he removed with his parents in 1886. He started steamboating as lookout on the Vanderbilt, on which boat he remained two months, finishing his first season on the Tioga, and the following one serving as wheelsman of the Commodore. In 1891 he went into the Idaho, wheeling her two seasons and acting as her second mate for three more, when he was transferred to second mate's birth on the Commodore. He continued thus for one season and part of another, and in 1897 was promoted to the position of first mate on her. It is only necessary to say that he is "one of the MacDonald brothers," this being accepted as a first-class recommendation by all masters and vessel owners.
Mr. MacDonald was united in marriage with Miss Carrie Phelps, of Buffalo, December 29, 1891, and this union has been blessed with two children. They reside at No. 561 South Division street, Buffalo, N.Y. Socially he is a member of Red Jacket Lodge, Royal Arcanum.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.