[Note at top] You need not return Mrs. T.'s letter.Box 12-388 TO REV. CALVIN MCQUESTEN, B.A. from his mother, Mary Baker McQuesten
Jan 12 1911
To: Calvin McQuesten 449, Ninth St. Edmonton, Altberta.
My dearest Calvin,
I was glad to hear you had been replenishing your wardrobe, and glad to think you had such a good income at your disposal, it is a great comfort to be able to buy what one needs. Tom knows the cap you described, they had them Elk Lake, but he could not use one in our climate. We have scarcely had even freezing weather, such a mild winter! I hope you will not wait till Sydney Little's present reaches you before thanking him, it will seem so long. As I told you before there are half-a-dozen handkerchiefs lovely quality, 3 pairs of socks, (they will be nice for spring) and two neck ties. Will send them when I hear from you, if you wear black and grey ties, there was one dark red amongst them and three grey and black.
This morning Miss Fraser (the daughter of Monjo) called to see, if I could find out from you any thing about the new girl's college which is to be started at Red Deer. She is very anxious to be made Principal and I believe has already written Dr. McQueen and Mr. Brown. She is anxious to know, if they have any other lady in view or if she has any chance. Tho' she is not exactly one's idea of a Lady Principal, she is very warm hearted and sympathetic, a very earnest Christian and most enthusiastic about missionary work. She does not wish to teach, but as Lady Principal to "mother the girls" for whom she has real sympathy and instil into them from the beginning a love for Christian work. She is a graduate of Queen's. It is an awkward thing to take the responsibility of recommending anyone for such a responsible position and perhaps those in charge would not be willing at the start to engage a Lady Principal who would not teach or be a house-keeper, she does not wish to do either, so perhaps you could find out, what the Lady would be expected to do, and that might settle the question.
You must tell me too how your prayer-meetings keep up. Did you get any Xmas remembrances from any of the congregation? You would scarcely be known enough for that. Did the sock of musical instruments come from Lorna and Jim?
We heard from your church; she said you were a very easy visitor to entertain and a good housekeeper, as you helped her dry dishes.
There is a great deal of sickness and death in our congregation this winter. I suppose you saw in "The Globe" the deaths of Mr. Dingwall, Angus Sutherland and last Sunday of Kate Turner Ferrie in Vancouver. John (Jack) Osborne is very ill, with two trained nurses. Then poor old Mrs. Kennedy was taken to the hospital between Christmas and New Year's to be operated on for Cancer, and came through wonderfully for 78 years. She was brought home on Monday, and the night before Miss Kennedy ran out to post a letter and fell and broke her leg. Wasn't it hard? So both sisters have to stop their teaching. We seem to hear nothing but woes. Mr. Chisholm is wild because we have a deficit at the church of over $400, we thought those days were over. He rages at choir expense, detests the McCoys. But you see $4000 of the old debt have been paid off, then they collected $400 out of our church for Dr. Fletcher, and with so many salaries to pay, it is just terrible the amount of money to be collected.
I cannot remember, what I write from one letter to another. I had kept a turkey from Xmas time so we took it up to the mountain and had dinner on Monday so as to give Ruby a treat. She has the same trouble still with her wretched stomach. Friends send her so many nice things, Edna took dinner up there to-day and kept house for the afternoon, almost afflicted with visitors, no one comes to see us, all run to the mountain. H. cannot get any thing done scarcely. With much love your mother.
[Enclosure (Box 12-394) letter to Mrs. McQuesten from Mrs. A. Lawrence Thomson, December 22, 1910, from Bexhill-on-Sea. England. Not transcribed].