Smith was born in Carnoustie, Scotland in 1892 and raised in a golfing family. He moved to America with his two brothers, Alex and Willie, to seek his place in golf history. Smith went on to win seven times between 1910 and 1916 before leaving to serve in World War I.
He returned from the war in 1923 and began his run of success at the L.A Open. His first win there came in 1928 against the likes of Tommy Armour and Harry Cooper at the Wilshire Country Club.
Smith defended his title in 1929 at Riviera and again in 1932 at Hillcrest. His final win came at the 1934 L.A. Open at the Los Angeles Country Club. He beat the field by eight strokes.
MacDonald Smith won more than 30 titles in his career. He died in 1949 at age 57.