Margaret Gilkison

Margaret Gilkison (b Geddes). Organist, pianist, b Aberdeen, d Ontario. She moved to Canada in 1834 and married David Gilkison the following year.

Gilkison, Margaret

Margaret Gilkison (b Geddes). Organist, pianist, b Aberdeen, d Ontario. She moved to Canada in 1834 and married David Gilkison the following year. The Gilkison and Geddes families, early settlers in Elora, Upper Canada (Ontario), 'brought from Scotland not only means, but education and talents of a very high order... they have left a mark of refinement in every place they lived' (Connon, p 123). One of Canada's first woman organists, Gilkison played at St James' Cathedral in Toronto as early as April 1842. During her tenure a new organ was acquired, but her salary, £100 in 1846, was reduced twice until it was £50 in 1848, at which time she resigned. She also appeared in Toronto concerts as a piano accompanist. 'She was a good musician but a lady of such an extremely nervous temperament that it was no unusual thing for her to faint and have to be carried out when her portion of the service was concluded' (F.E. Dixon, 'Music in Toronto,' Daily Mail and Empire, 7 Nov 1896).


Further Reading

  • Connon, J. Elora (Fergus, Ont 1930)

    St James' Cathedral, Toronto. Churchwardens Register and Minute Book, 1842-1908