[Note at top of p."2":] Mrs. Sadleir died last week. Tom was a pall-bearer.Box 12-646 TO REV. CALVIN MCQUESTEN, B.A. from his mother, Mary Baker McQuesten
May 20 1913
To: Calvin McQuesten 'The Manse' Bracebridge, Ontario
My dear Calvin,
Your letter last week came just as I was starting off for Strabane. The day before (Tuesday) I had gone to Toronto to a Board meeting, at which principal Gandier presented the Basis of Union for W.F.M.S. & W.H.M.S. He certainly put the whole case very well, but just as we knew it. We had wanted things more defined especially our proportion of the funds, but he assured us, if we stood out for this, it would block the union, which would be a calamity, so we agreed tho' with considerable discussing.
Going to Strabane went by new C.P.R. road to Flamboro, where the minister Mr. Ross met me and we had an hour's ride to the Manse. Mrs. Ross was a kind little woman and I stayed with them over night and had a very comfortable night's rest, after the afternoon meeting. Strabane is a small congregation and has never been a nice one, a poor style of people and the minister preaches also at Kilbride a much better people tho' few Leckie told me. The minister only preaches once at each place and rests himself in the evening just as Mr. Fisher does at Flamboro. They think you have far too much, but I would be sorry to see you in any of these places, just deadly. Well, Thursday morning I was driven to Kirkwall about 7 miles. Was very cordially received by the Leckies. He himself was laid up with Sciatica and it quite surprised me, for I had been hearing that he was "a notorious walker." He keeps no horse and thought nothing of walking even to Hamilton.
Well, we had a good meeting there, the ladies had a tea and they are a much better people. Leckie says he has six elders, any one of whom could take a service for him, but there are now so few of them that they were glad to bring in the "United Brethren" down at Sheffield. Poor Leckie is certainly shut off in a very quiet place, the nearest station is ten miles and they were very anxious I should stay all night and were thoroughly cordially. Mrs. Leckie is a very pleasant bright girl and there are two little girls. But I thought I would like to go home it would have meant either a very early morning start or wait till afternoon and 'visiting' tires me very much. So after the meeting Mrs. Stewart took me home with her and her son was to drive me to Shaw Station, but when we came to make inquiries we found train did not stop there, so I had to go 14 miles to Dundas. It was a cold windy day, and I dreaded the drive but I did not suffer as much as expected to reach Dundas just in time to escape a violent thunderstorm.
When I reached home I found "Bobby" Baird from Zealandia. He says your name is held in most affectionate remembrance and highest esteem by numbers of people there. You seem to have been the only one who ever made any impression or for whom they had any regard. Of course this pleased me very much, but I can quite believe it.
That was a fine wedding fee. Saw Miss Crombie at Board meeting, she had noticed your name in the Globe. Mrs. McGillivray as asking for you too, she feels lonely without her mother. The poor Miss Parsons are left without anything & Mrs. P. has gone to her sister, they are living in some poor apartments. Knox Church thought it would not do to establish a precedent by continuing the allowance. By some accident, the life assurance had lapsed.
I was very sad about Alice McKenzie, Mrs. Thomson told me, she had seen Dr. Abraham who told her it was heart trouble from the rheumatism and he had been asked to break news to Georgie but he had got Mrs. Abraham to do it. It will be a great loss to the family they will hardly be able to keep Staney Brae going.
You did not say, if the Hughes have left you, if you do not feel able to stand the going out for meals, let us know right away. Mary could go up. What day are you going to Toronto? Now answer these questions. Is there any of your student friends who could wear Tom's Prince Albert, he has to get another suit. "Morning coats" are worn now. With much love from all.
Your loving mother
M. B. McQuesten