He was born in Baie Verte, New Brunswick, the son of Thomas and Olive (née Oulton) Magee, both of Irish descent. He was educated in Baie Verte, Saint John and Fredericton and went on to study at the University of New Brunswick. Following the family tradition, Fred, at age 22, opened a general store in Port Elgin. He was elected to and served on the Westmorland County council from 1908-10. He was a member of the province's Executive Council, first as minister without portfolio in 1921 and then president. Magee later operated produce and fish processing plants in Port Elgin, selling lobster under the Mephisto label. He died in 1952, shortly before his 77th birthday. He had been married to Myrtle R. McLeod in 1899.
His former home on Main Street in Port Elgin is now a senior's residence and the neighbouring building, his former offices, house the municipal office, fire department and library. In his will he left a large endowment to the University of New Brunswick.
- Genealogy, picture of headstone
- Bill Hamilton, "The Man Behind Mephisto: Fred magee - An Extraordinary Entrepreneur", Tantramar Flashback, 2002
- Village of Port Elgin History
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