Box 12-119 TO REV. CALVIN MCQUESTEN, B.A. from his mother, Mary Baker McQuesten
Mar 11 1913 [approximate date]
To: Calvin McQuesten Bracebridge, Ontario
From: 'Whitehern' Hamilton
It really was most trying to have that wretched furnace smoking on communion Sabbath. After the careful preparation you would make and your sermon arranged to have to postpone the communion was very upsetting. I am sure Beggs did not light the fire in time; if he had the smoking time should have been over. Dr. Hanson was preaching in St. Paul's, some of us went in the morning and some in the evening. His preaching is excellent and he is just a type of the fine old country minister, he just preaches the Bible and has a very tender, gracious manner. Fine account, beautiful reader.
Mr. Ketchen is taking two weeks holiday, he looks worn out. I really feel sorry for him, I am afraid he has no real depth.1 Dr. McTavish called to-day but we were out, he is assisting Mr. McGillivrey at St. John's with some special services. I think Mr. McG. is making a special effort to rouse that congregation.
Mary is visiting Marion Glassco. Mrs. G. and Marjorie are in New York. Hilda came home on Thursday, after a strenuous time of visiting. Went out to see Helen Luces, and was so frozen, she came home not at all enamoured of married life with limited means, altho' I believe the reason was Helen had been out and the fires had got down. She lunched with Mrs. Whittemore, who is very comfortable in her flat and also with Mrs. Frank W. whom she thought very nice. She also lunched with Mary Trigge and saw Helen Locke. Mary T. has a lovely house beautifully furnished and Helen is nursing for Dr. Bruce and getting on finely. The weather has been lovely to-day, quite mild.
I received your kind letter of sympathy on the 7, it is so good of you always to remember. You need not think I suffered in wearing cotton gloves, we called them taffeta and I always enjoyed wearing them because I could get them on much more quickly than kid. I could not be sad on the 7th, for really there is nothing but mercy and kindness to remember and the wonderful goodness of God, in placing me in such comfort, in my declining years. It is all just wonderful to me. I was sorry to think you had some trouble about the money for your homestead. Do you need my help? Tom has tried to explain it, but I am rather dense about banking matters.
I have again to renovate the halls, bath-room and some rooms at Bold St. When Mrs. Boyd went in I promised by degrees I would put it all in good shape, so I have to do it and it will cost not less than $150 by the time I am through. Tom's two stores and flats are about ready, he has them all rented. They look very nice indeed, a very good size inside and the bow windows outside looks so well and make the rooms so light and cheerful inside.
I suppose you are not thinking of coming down at Easter. It is so far for you to come for a short time, and then the season is so early. I was looking at the calendar and see that Queen's Birthday comes on a Saturday. That is not a good day either and I suppose you will be wanting to come to Toronto for the next conference. I was just thinking, the congregations ought to arrange to do without ministers at that time. If all the ministers are to take holidays, why that is the only thing for them to do. They can all take a change very well and go to the other churches for once or twice. I believe the conference is to begin on last Saturday of May, and Massey Hall is engaged for two weeks. All the college residences are to be used for the visitors. W.F.M.S. & W.H.[M.S.] to be there too. A great time! Fancy! I hear our brilliant elders are arranging for us to have McKeith of Paris for our anniversary. Must close, with much love. Do hope you are getting some decent food, if you are not do speak, because you are paying well for it!
Your loving mother
[P.S.] One of my expenses is putting on inscriptions at cemetery but if you think it would be a pity not to have the second walnut bed-stead just say so.
[Enclosure, Newspaper clipping, no date]: "His Last Hurdle" "Judge Cronin Jumped Stone Wall to Death." "M. Stafford of Montreal had Just Bought It." "This morning at 9 o'clock Judge Cronin, the famous hurdle horse, broke loose from the blacksmith shop on Jackson street east, where he and a mate were tied. And made his last dash at record time. His course lay westward on Jackson street, but his stretch was short. Many narrow escapes were recorded as he, together with the other animal attached to the same ring, and bearing the scantling that they pulled from the wall in the shop, dashed up the street. At James street they became separated, but the scantling remained with the Judge, and urged him on. As he neared the corner of MacNab he sighted the low stone fence surrounding Mrs. McQuesten's residence, and true to his professional training he headed for it. For a moment he poised, then raised and plunged. But the halter and scantling held him down, and he fell heavily over the fence, tearing the strong masonry with him, and landing in a tangled heap inside. After an investigation it was found that his right shoulder was mashed to a pulp, and the leg hung loosely and useless. He was cut and bruised in many places, and it was decided to end his misery, which was done. The animal had just been purchased by M. Stafford, of Montreal, and was about to be shipped to that place."
1 Mary usually favours Rev. B. Ketchen and his preaching, however, for more on Mary's criticism of his sermons, see Box 12-631, Box 12-145, Box 12-112. For more on Rev. B. Ketchen, see W5359.