Posted by: Jim Bell | March 4, 2011

Matthew Craig MacGuffie

The book “History of Passaic and its environs – historical-biographical, 1922” has the following passage.

ROBERT NICHOL MacGUFFIE, M. D., is a successful representative of the medical profession in Passaic, New Jersey. Like a great many physicians who have been engaged in practice during the past few years, he served his country during the World War, and, coming to Passaic in 1912 as he did, he has since that time devoted only a small part of the intervening years to private work.

Dr. MacGuffie was born in Waverly, New York, March 15, 1888, the son of Matthew Craig and Martha (Morgan) Mac Guffie. Matthew C. MacGuffie was born in Castle Douglas, Galloway, Scotland, and came to this country when a young man, locating first in California, but later removing to New York City, where, at the time” of the Civil War, he enlisted in the navy and served on the United States Ship “Chicopee,” under Admiral Farragut. He was severely injured in service. Following his discharge from the navy at the close of the war he returned to the northwest, where, as a professional musician, he had an adventurous career. He died in 1907, at the age of sixty years. To Mr. and Mrs. MacGuffie were born three children : Frank, a civil engineer; Robert Nichol, of whom further; and Lois.

Having attended the public schools of his native place and finished his studies there with graduation in the local high school, Robert Nichol MacGuffie then matriculated at the New York Medical College and Flower Hospital, graduating in the class of 1912 with the degree of Doctor of Medicine. In October, 1912, he came to Passaic as resident physician and surgeon of St. Mary’s Hospital, serving until October, 1915, when he established himself in the practice of his chosen profession. Two years later, in July, 1917, he enlisted in the medical corps of the United States Army, and on September 17 was commissioned first lieutenant and sent to the Army Medical College at Washington, D. C, where he remained until February, 1918, when he sailed for England, and upon landing was .assigned to the Second Northern General Hospital at Leeds. He then served as attending surgeon at the Seaforth Military Hospital at North Liverpool until June, when he was transferred to the Royal Army Medical Headquarters at Blackpool for military training. From here he was sent to France to the 54th British Base Hospital at Wimereaux, a suburb of Boulogne. Then followed a short experience with the South Midland Field Ambulance at Molinghem, after which he was sent to the advance dressing station of the Sixty-first South Midland division at St. Verrant. Three days later, through a sudden vacancy, Lieutenant MacGuffie was ordered into the line as regimental medical officer of the Second Seventh Royal Warwickshire Regiment, then holding a section of trenches on the right of Kemmel Hill In Flanders. He served with his regiment until November 1, 1918, when he was wounded at Valenciennes by a shell in both thighs and sent to the 59th Casualty Clearing Station at Cambral. After two operations in France he was sent to the Third London General Hospital in London, where he remained for seven months. He was then transferred back to the American army and sent to American Base Hospital, No. 40, at Knotty Ash, Liverpool, England, After three weeks he sailed for this country and upon landing was taken to the Polyclinic Hospital, New York City, and subsequently transferred to the base hospital at Fort McHenry, Baltimore, Maryland, where he remained from June until December 16, 1919, when he was honorably discharged. He was decorated with the British Military Cross by the King of England at Buckingham Palace, in March, 1919, and cited by Sir Douglas Haig for devotion to duty at Maresches during the Battle of the Salle River, in October, 1918. Dr. MacGuffie is a member of the New Jersey State Medical Association; of the Passaic County Medical Society; and of the Passaic Practitioners Club. He is also affiliated with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and with Alpha Sigma fraternity of New York College. He is also a member of Passaic City Club, Japan Society of New York City, and of the Lyons Club.

On October 14, 1915, at Brooklyn, New York, Dr. MacGuffie married F. Jessie Smith, of New York City, and they are the parents of one child, Jane Lois.


  1. I was delighted to find your ‘Stewartry Snippet’ on Matthew Craig MacGuffie & his son Robert. Robert eventually had 3 daughters ; Martha Morgan b. 22 Jan 1924 d. 7 March 2011 and Ann Craig MacGuffie born a year later.

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