We remember fondly Mary’s participation in the Archaeology Workshops at Ghost Ranch with Florence Hawley Ellis. Both she and her husband Rev. Jack Purdy served Ghost Ranch as original members of the original National Ghost Ranch Society, serving to share the Ghost Ranch story wherever they went.
Read more about Mary through the legacy obituary as posted in the Santa Fe New Mexican.
MARY MARGARET CORPE PURDY Mary Margaret Corpe Purdy passed away on January 8, 2018. Mary Margaret Corpe was born on April 9, 1929 in Walworth, Wisconsin, the third and youngest child of the Reverend John Franklin Corpe and Doris Healy Corpe. She attended Englewood High School in Chicago and Doane College in Nebraska before transferring to the University of Wisconsin, where she took her M.A. in Speech and went on to become an English teacher. She and the Reverend John C. (Jack) Purdy were married in 1954. They and their three children moved to Pennsylvania in 1963 when Jack joined the Board of Christian Education in Philadelphia. The Purdys’ love affair with New Mexico began in the late 1960s with family vacations at Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu. Mary also became interested in Southwestern archeology; she and Jack participated in many of the archeological digs sponsored by Ghost Ranch, led by the late Florence Hawley Ellis. Meanwhile, the family moved to New Jersey when Jack took up a position at the Interchurch Center in New York City. There Mary’s interests led her to volunteer at the Museum of the American Indian, where she was soon taken on as a paid employee and eventually became Assistant Registrar. Her experiences at the MAI included a trip to China (another longtime interest), traveling with an MAI show from Beijing to Shanghai. Mary and Jack retired to Santa Fe in 1993, where Mary did volunteer work at the Institute of American Indian Arts and at the Wheelwright Museum. Mary also had a lifelong love of music; for years she and Jack had season tickets to the Santa Fe Opera, and also attended the HD performances from the Metropolitan Opera at the Lensic. Mary Corpe Purdy was predeceased by her husband, the Reverend John C. Purdy, and by her siblings, Carol Corpe (Mrs. Henry) DeBruyne and Dr. William A. Corpe. She is survived by her three children, Margaret Purdy Dean, David J. Purdy and Thomas C. Purdy, and her three grandchildren, Norman T. Dean, William S. Dean, and Mariella J. Purdy. A memorial service will be held at First Presbyterian Church of Santa Fe on January 27, 2018 at 1:30 p.m. Those wishing to honor Mary Purdy with charitable contributions are encouraged to donate to Doctors Without Borders, to the Santa Fe Opera, and to the music program at FPC Santa Fe.