Marion MacWilliam

October 19, 1926 ~ August 6, 2022 (age 95)


Marion D. MacWilliam, 95, of Hancock, passed away on Saturday, August 6, 2022, at Summerhill Assisted Living in Peterborough, NH. She was born in Boston, MA, on October 19, 1926, the daughter of George and Hilda (Gebhardt) Dowling.

Marion was raised in Hyde Park, MA.  As an only child, she turned to books to fill the hours and became an avid reader very early in her life, which led to a lifelong passion and career. 

Marion attended Hyde Park High School, graduating in 1944.  Following her other passion, art, she attended Massachusetts College of Art and Design from which she graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.  While painting, first in oils and then in watercolors, was a lifelong passion and hobby, she decided early on that she needed a more practical education, so she attended Simmons College and received a Master’s in Library Science. 

She met her future husband, William A. MacWilliam, at a community dance where Bill immediately impressed her with his ability to “cut a rug”.  They were married on June 10, 1950, and settled in Quincy, MA. 

She spent many happy years working at the Boston Public Library as a librarian in the art department.  In 1960, after moving to Norwood, MA, she went to work for Nortronics, a government contractor, for which she was required to have a “secret” government clearance.  Later, she held a position in the library at Regis College in Weston, MA and subsequently served as a research librarian at the Babson College Library in Wellesley, MA. 

In 1972, she and Bill moved their family to New Hampshire where Bill started a position as the Comptroller at Franklin Pierce College.  Marion worked for a short time at Conant High School, before moving to Hillsborough-Deering High School where she worked happily as the head librarian for the remainder of her career, retiring in 1994.

Marion was a loving, caring soul to all she knew.  She constantly impressed her family and friends with her encyclopedic knowledge on every subject.  She remained interested in history, politics, and sports her entire life.  Her great joys included spending time with family and friends (including her cat, Tripod), trips to the family home on Cape Cod, and watching the Red Sox and the Patriots. 

Marion’s independent, curious and creative spirit will be remembered always and missed by all.   

Marion is survived by her children: Andrew MacWilliam of Windham, NH; Rae MacWilliam and his wife Kristiana of Manchester, NH, and Janet Sweeney and her husband Sean of Hancock; her grandchildren, Alex MacWilliam and his wife Chelsea of Hendersonville, TN; Allison Grimm of Lancaster, MA, Donovan Sweeney of Hancock, and Meredith MacWilliam of Manchester; and a great-granddaughter, the light of Marion’s life, Guinevere MacWilliam, of Hendersonville, TN.

Marion was predeceased by her husband, Bill, in 2003.

Visiting hours will be held on Monday, August 15, 2022, from 5:00-7:00PM at Jellison Funeral Home, 25 Concord Street, Peterborough NH. Burial services will be held privately at the family plot in Hancock, NH.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Marion’s name to the Monadnock Humane Society, 101 W. Swanzey Road, Swanzey NH 03446, or at



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August 15, 2022

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Jellison Funeral Home and Cremation Services
25 Concord Street
Peterborough, NH 03458

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