Mary Winifred Wishart, Lady Warren (1900 – 1994)

Wishart Tree WIS0020

Born: 1900 – Glasgow, Lanarkshire
Died: 1994 – Glasgow, Lanarkshire

Mary Winifred was mainly noted for the successful men in her life, her husband, father and maternal grandfather all had interesting and successful lives. When her father John was six, his Scottish father, Archibald, died while working in Ireland, leaving a widow with three children under six.

John became the mainstay of the family as he worked his way to near the pinnacle of the Scottish Shale oil industry. He was then described as a wealthy oil and rubber magnate.

In 1927 Mary Winifred married Victor Dunn Warren, an explosives manufacturer, later Sir Victor Warren, MBE, LlB, CStJ, TD, the Lord Provost of Glasgow from 1949 – 1952. In 1929 Victor was Chairman of Hunter and Warren, Explosives Manufacturers, the family business. Although initially prominent for the exquisite or elegant gowns she wore to large charity events, the usual role for the wife of a successful business man and politician, she was sufficiently astute to be appointed as a director of the company. In addition, as Mrs Victor Warren (before her husband was knighted in 1951), she became the first woman ever to hold the title of Lady Provost of Glasgow. She received this honorary title at the instigation of the Standing Conference of the Women’s Organisations of Glasgow, causes in which she had had a long interest and involvement.

In 1951, when Victor was knighted she became Lady Warren for life. Sadly Victor died the following year. In 1959 she was recognised for her charitable work by her appointment as Dame Commander of the Order of Knights Hospitaller of St John of Jerusalem.

Lady Winifred lived on in the West End of Glasgow until her death in 1994. It does seem that she had a strength and determination lurking under her elegant clothing.