Francis Margaret McGuire was born in Glenelg, South Australia, on the 20th May 1900.

Margaret, as she was commonly known, was born into a wealthy Protestant family of Scottish-English parentage in 1900 at Glenelg. After a childhood of home tutoring and European travels she attended Adelaide University where she graduated with an Honours degree in Science. As a biochemist Margaret worked in the Adelaide University laboratories at the time when Adelaide was a world leader in insulin research.

In the late 1920's Margaret converted to Catholicism and in 1927 married Dominic Paul McGuire.

The McGuire's were actively involved in the Catholic Evidence Guild and the Catholic Literary Movement in England. Mrs McGuire gave up her career as a biochemist for the life of travel, diplomacy and work as a Catholic layperson.

This work continued on their return to Adelaide in the early 1930's.

The McGuire's regularly travelled to Europe & America where they were involved in Catholic Action and for a time Paul McGuire was the Australian Ambassador to Italy.

Margaret was decorated for public service by the Australian and Italian Governments, she was the author of 10 books, including an autobiography of the first 14 years of her life, a detective novel, two officially commissioned Australian Navy histories and she was actively involved in many associations and societies.

Margaret McGuire's interests included a passion for social justice. Her life was packed with interests, events and achievements.

She founded the Friends in 1981 following a bequest to the State Library of South Australia to establish the Paul McGuire Maritime Library.

Even in her advancing years she attended every meeting of the friends almost to the time of her death on the 14th August 1995.

The complete version is available here.

Some reflections by Margaret McGuire on the collection.

Paul McGuire