For Posterity's Sake         

A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project


In memory of those who have Crossed the Bar


Charles Anthony Francis (Tony) Law, D.S.C., C.D.




Commander, O-40840, RCN


Born: 15 Oct 1916, London, England


Died: 15 Oct 1996


Well-known artist and naval officer Cdr. C. Anthony Law

Law, Cdr, C. Anthony, D.SC., C.D., RCN (Ret'd), D.Lit (Hon) - October 15, 1916 to October 15, 1996. Son of Major A.A.S. Law (Toronto) and Maude Audette (Ottawa), predecease by his brother, Stuart Law and in 1995 by his uncle Louis Audette Esq., Commander Law is mourned by his loving wife, the artist Jane (Shaw) Law and a niece, Moira Law in England and relatives both in Canada and England. Commander Law, Tony to his many friends was known and esteemed as an artist and as a naval officer. Born in London, England, he lived in Toronto and Quebec where he studied with noted Canadian artists including Brownell, Varley and Tudor-Hart and attended the Ecole des Beaux-Arts where he met Jane. His first exhibition in Quebec in 1937 was a gret success and shortly thereafter a paining was accepted by the Royal Canadian Academy. He served in the RCNVR 1940-1945 and commanded the 29th Canadian Motor Torpedo Boat flotilla in the English Channel. He received the Distinguished Service Cross and was trice mentioned in dispatches. He was appointed official naval war artist in 1943 and also from 1945-1946. he later documented these experiences in his book, White Plumes Astern. After the war he remained in the Navy until 1966 and had a distinguished career with commands on both coasts and lengthy service in the Arctic. An unusually interesting command was HMCS Cape Scott with the Canadian Medical and Scientific Expedition to Easter Island in 1963-1964. From 1973 to 1975 he was a governor of the Canadian Conference of the Arts and since 1968 was a board member of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and chairman from 1977 to 1979. He was appointed artist -in-residence at Saint Mary's University in Halifax in 1967, where he established the Art Gallery and served until 1980. In 1981 he was awarded the honorary degree of doctor of letters by the Senate of Saint Mary's University. His painting hang in galleries and museums across the county and in Canada House in London and numerous  exhibitions have taken place including a major retrospective exhibition at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia in 1989, and culminating in a joint exhibition with Jane Shaw at Saint Mary's University Art Gallery in May of 1996. His paintings depict his wide travels throughout the world. While he is known primarily as a landscape painter, he has also recorded history and human experiences. Tony always made time to help young artists and also to entertain and instruct young children. He and Jane opened their home and yacht to these young people. Tony died peacefully at home after a long illness. A funeral service will be held at St. Augustine's Church, 290 Purcells Cove Rd., Halifax, at 2 p.m., Friday, October 18. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Canadian Cancer Society would be appreciated.


C. Anthony Law and ‘an Artist’s Paradise’- Thesis by Pat Jessup, MMM, CD, LCdr, RCN.  Published here with permission of LCdr Pat Jessup


Ships served in:

* Listed as an A/SLt, RCNVR (seniority 30 Mar 1940) (Navy List Apr 1940)

* Passage in Duchess of Athlone for Transport to the UK in 1940 (The Nauticapedia)

* Listed as a A/SLt, RCNVR, Serving or Training in the Royal Navy (Navy List Apr 1940)

HMS KING ALFRED - Served in King Alfred, Officer Training Establishment RN - 1940 (The Nauticapedia)

HMS WOLFE - Served in Wolfe for Sea Training (The Nauticapedia)

HM MGB-53 - Served in MGB-53 as 1st Lt and NavO in 1941 (The Nauticapedia)

MTB-629 - Served in MTB 629 as CO (The Nauticapedia)

MTB-459 - Served in MTB 459 as CO 26 Jan 1944 - 04 Aug 1944 as a Lt, RCNVR (Macpherson-Burgess - Ships of Canada's Naval Forces 1910-1981) (Navy List Sep 1944)


MTB-486 - Appointed to MTB 486 05 Aug 1944 as an A/LCdr, RCNVR, CO (Navy List Sep1944)  Served as CO until 24 Feb 1945 (Macpherson-Burgess - Ships of Canada's Naval Forces 1910-1981). Note: the Mar 1945 Navy List has A/LCdr Law on MTB-but no longer as CO.  Lt Charles Duffey took command on 25 Feb 1945)

NAVAL SERVICE HEADQUARTERS OTTAWA - Appointed to NSHQ Ottawa, Staff of Director Naval Historical Section, 05 Jun 1945 as a LCdr, RCN(R) (S.B.) (Navy List Apr 1946)

HMCS UGANDA - Appointed to Uganda 20 Aug 1946 as a Lt, RCN (seniority 01 Jan 1940) (Navy List Oct 1946)

HMCS ANTIGONISH - Appointed to Antigonish 01 Aug 1947 as a LCdr, RCN, CO (seniority 01 Jan 1948) (Navy List Jan 1948)

HMCS NADEN (wears Flag of Flag Officer Pacific Coast)- Appointed to Naden, Staff of FOPC 04 Dec 1948 as a LCdr, RCN (Navy List Jan 1949)

* Listed as serving with RN as a LCdr, RCN (Navy List Jul 1949

NAVAL HEADQUARTERS OTTAWA - Appointed to NHQ Ottawa, For Duty with Defence Secretary 05 Oct 1949 as a LCdr, RCN (Navy List Jan 1950)

HMCS MAGNIFICENT - Appointed to Magnificent 04 Feb 1952 as a LCdr, RCN, First Lieutenant-Commander (Navy List Apr 1952)

RCN BARRACKS HALIFAX - Appointed to RCN Barracks Halifax, OIC Junior Officer' Technical and Leadership Courses 23 Jul 1953 Cdr, RCN (01 Jun 1953) (Navy List Oct 1953)

HMCS LABRADOR - Appointed to Labrador 23 Jan 1956 as Cdr, RCN, XO (Navy List Jul 1956).  Served a CO 04 Nov 1957 until commencement of Labrador's refit on 22 Nov 1957.

RCN BARRACKS HALIFAX - Appointed to RCN Barracks Halifax 22 Nov 1957 as a Cdr, RCN, Add'l (Navy List Jan 1958)

HMCS NIAGARA - Appointed to Niagara, On Staff of Commander Military Sea Transport Service Atlantic Area as a Cdr, RCN (Navy List Jul 1958)

NAVAL HEADQUARTERS OTTAWA - Appointed to NHQ Ottawa, Staff of Chief of Naval Personnel 01 Feb 1960 (Navy List Jul 1960)

HMCS SIOUX - Appointed to Sioux 20 Sep 1961 as Cdr, RCN, CO (Navy List Oct 1962) Appointed to Sioux 01 Oct 1962 as a CO - Commander Third Canadian Escort Squadron - Senior Officer in Command (Navy List Oct 1962)

FLAG OFFICER ATLANTIC COAST  - Appointed to FOAC, Staff of Commodore Personnel, Atlantic Coast 16 Oct 1963 as a Cdr, RCN (Navy List Apr 1964)

HMCS CAPE SCOTT - Appointed to Cape Scott 11 May 1964 as a Cdr, RCN, CO (Navy List Oct 1964). Served as CO 11 May 1964 - 10 Apr 1966 (Macpherson-Burgess - Ships of Canada's Naval Forces 1910-1981)


Lt Tony Law, RCNVR - England 1943

Portrait by Edwin Dean McNally

Source: Canadian War Museum

Lt Tony Law - 1943

Portrait by Winston H. Elliott


Painting by Tony Law

Courtesy of Vivian McAlister, LCol, RCMS, ret'd


written on the back of the frame of the above painting



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