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Charlotte MacGillivray-Amar

MacGillivray Pipe Band

Charlotte MacGillivray in a photograph with members of the MacGillivray Pipe Band.

Date of birth: Sept. 30, 1917

Date of death: April 25, 2015

Accomplishments Related to: Business, Philanthropy Major affiliations: MacGillivray Pipe Band, Fort William Times Journal, James Murphy Coal and Oil Company, St. Patrick's Cathedral.

Charlotte was born on Sept. 30, 1917 in Port Arthur, Ontario, she was the only daughter of the late Doctor and Mrs. Thomas Dow MacGillivray of Port Arthur, Ontario and granddaughter of the late Very Reverend Malcolm MacGillivray, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Canada.

Charlotte was the Honorary Chief and Patron of the MacGillivray Pipe Band. The band was a gift to her from her loving father on the occasion of her birth in 1917. After finishing her formal schooling, Charlotte began a modeling career in London. She was among the earliest models to be photographed rather than sketched, and appeared in ads in magazines such as Mayfair, Town & Country and Vogue. She ended her modeling career soon after meeting Francis X. Murphy, whom she married in 1940 at Saint Patrick's Rectory on July 17, 1940. Upon the death of Mr. Murphy in 1958, Charlotte was the first woman member of the Canadian Press for many years. Charlotte was President and owner of the Fort William Times Journal and also President and owner of the James Murphy Coal and Oil Company.

Charlotte Macgillivray retained ownership of the designated heritage property known as the Murphy Mansion until 1986. Charlotte was well known for her many charitable works, among them: Saint Joseph's Orphanage, The Thunder Bay Historical Museum, McKellar Hospital, Port Arthur General Hospital, Saint Andrew's Presbyterian Church, and the Frank Murphy Recreational Centre.  St. Patrick's Cathedral has a beautiful, large stained glass window dedicated in loving memory of Frank X. Murphy and his family. In the early 1950's, Charlotte was instrumental in having cerebral palsy children recognized and started a school for them which was in the Baptist Church at Brodie and Donald Streets.

MacGillivray-Amar passed away at the age 97 at her residence in Palm Beach, Fla., on April 25. She is survived by her husband Leon Amar.

Charlotte Murphy newsclipping

Newspaper clipping featuring Charlotte MacGillivray announcing marriage to Mr. Frank Murphy.

Suggested by Larry Hebert