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First Miss America Dies In Nursing Home

Tue., Oct. 3, 1995

Margaret Gorman Cahill, who was crowned the first Miss America in 1921, has died of cardiac arrest and pneumonia. She was 90 years old.

Cahill died Sunday at a nursing home in Bowie, Md.

Cahill was a Washington teenager when she was chosen from among more than a half dozen women and girls as winner of the “Inter-City Beauty Contest” on the beach in Atlantic City, N.J., on Sept. 14, 1921.

“I never cared to be Miss America. It wasn’t my idea. I am so bored by it all. I really want to forget the whole thing,” she said in a 1980 interview.

Her parents entered her photograph in a contest which led to Atlantic City.

Cahill later married a Washington real estate developer.

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