Strathcona Scholarship. Established in Montreal in 1895 by Donald Alexander Smith, statesman, financier, and philanthropist (b Forres, Moray, Scotland, 6 Aug 1820, d London 21 or 29 Jan 1914), who became Baron of Strathcona and Mount Royal in 1897. A prominent figure in Canadian history, Lord Strathcona contributed considerable sums of money to musicians, societies, and teaching establishments during his career in Canada.
With his cousin Lord Mount Stephen, Lord Strathcona created in 1885 the Montreal Scholarship of the RCM. This award, granted first to Ella Walker ca 1886-91, then to a Miss Russell ca 1891-4, became in 1895 the Strathcona Scholarship with Lord Strathcona as sole donor. It allowed the winners free tuition at the RCM for three years (with a possible two-year extension) as well as an annual living allowance of 50 guineas. Béatrice La Palme (1895), the singer Ada Moylan (1898), Lynnwood Farnam (1900), Pauline Donalda (1902), Arthur Egerton (1911), Sarah Fischer (1917), Rose Goldblatt (1930), and Alexander Brott (1939) were among the recipients, as were also Christina Barrie-Dickson and Jules Lamontagne.
Lord Strathcona was honorary president and a member of numerous music societies and was associated with McGill University as governor, chancellor, and special benefactor over a considerable period of time. Between 1896 and 1913 he continued to help young Canadian artists, including Éviola Gauthier and Kathleen Parlow, while holding the post of Canadian High Commissioner in London. The Strathcona Music Building of McGill University was named in his honour in 1971.