Gray, Margaret

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Gray, Margaret

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1922-2017

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Margaret Miller Gray (née Blair) was a Scottish-born Canadian writer. Born in Glasgow in 1922, she immigrated with her family to Canada in 1925, where they settled in Toronto. After graduating from St. Clement’s School in 1939, she worked for a stockbroker before enlisting and serving in the Royal Canadian Navy, where she met her future husband, Don Gray. In 1945 she left the Navy and married Don Gray. They had two children, Ann and Ian.

While her husband’s job moved the family back and forth between Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, Gray remained at home to care for their children, although she was active in community activities, taking art classes and performing in local theatre. In 1967, Gray began her Art History Degree at Sir George Williams University (now Concordia University) in Montreal, however her studies were briefly interrupted when the family was transferred to Toronto. She continued her studies at the University of Toronto and completed her B.F.A. in 1974.

Gray is the author of three books: A.J. Casson (1976); Charles Comfort (1976); and Carl Schaefer (1977), all published by Gage Publishing. Co-written with her friend Margaret Rand and photographed by Lois Steen, the books were part of the Canadian Artists series, a project dedicated to highlighting younger contemporaries of the better-known Group of Seven. Gray arranged and conducted interviews and wrote the artist biographies, while Rand carried out background research on the technical aspects of their work. A fourth book on Yvonne McKague Housser was also planned and written, however due to production issues, underwhelming sales, and a change in the editorial staff at Gage Publishing, it was never published and all subsequent books in the series were cancelled. Gray continued to edit books in the 1980s and 1990s. She was a docent for several years at the Royal Ontario Museum and she also wrote numerous unpublished stories for her grandchildren.

After her husband's death, Gray moved west in 2011 to be close to her family in Calgary. She passed away in 2017.

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