Box 14-119 TO MISS LEONA BEANE MCQUISTEN [sic] from Thomas Baker McQuesten
Sep 25 1930 estimated date
To: Leona Beane McQuisten Hotel Trenton, 427 So Olive Los Angeles, California
From: Whitehern Hamilton, Ontario
I have your letter of September 11th. My grandfather, Calvin McQuesten came from New Hampshire in 1837 1 and established the business of McQuesten & Fisher, with his cousin John Fisher who also came from New Hampshire. This was the pioneer manufacturer of harvesting machinery and implements in this province. The business later became the Sawyer-Massey Company who still exist manufacturing road making and agricultural machinery at Hamilton.
Calvin McQuesten graduated in medicine from Bowdoin College in 1829 and received his degree from that College. Prior to coming to Canada he practised medicine in Lockport, New York. He died in Hamilton, Ontario, and was buried in Hamilton cemetery in 1885. His sons were David McQuesten who died in infancy, Calvin Brooks McQuesten who was the son of Calvin McQuesten and Margaret Learned, daughter of Dr. Learned of Hopkin Town, New Hampshire.2 Calvin McQuesten's other son was my father, Isaac Baldwin McQuesten who was born in 1848 and died on March 7th, 1888. My father was the son of Calvin McQuesten and Estimate Ruth Esther Baldwin who died about 1855.3 Calvin Brooks McQuesten graduated from Dartmouth, New Hampshire, and saw service in the Revolutionary War as a surgeon. He later practised in New York from the expiration of the war until 1908 when he returned to Hamilton and died here in 1913.4
My father, Issac Baldwin McQuesten married Mary Jane Baker in 1872 5 and had the following children: - Mary B. McQuesten, Calvin McQuesten, Hilda B. McQuesten, Ruby B. McQuesten, Muriel McQuesten, Thomas Baker McQuesten and Margarette Edna McQuesten, all of whom survive except Muriel McQuesten who died in infancy and Ruby B. McQuesten who died on the 2nd of April 1911.6 The remainder are unmarried. My brother, Calvin McQuesten is a Minister having graduated from Toronto University. I practise law having graduated from Toronto University in 1904 and from Osgoode Hall in 1907.
I do not know anything about Sir Hugh McQuiston or about Patrick MacQuisten. Strangely enough the day before yesterday a McQuiston came into my office who stated he formerly lived in Glasgow and his father was a cousin of the present M.P. for Argyleshire to whom you refer. He stated a branch of his family came out about the middle of the last century and a number of them are in and around Boston, lumber merchants. The two McQuistons7 you mention may be connected with that bunch.
[Thomas B. McQuesten]
JEY [Miss Yorston Tom's Secretary]
1 There are several discrepancies in this letter: The "McQuesten & Co." foundry was established in approximately 1835, and John Fisher ran the foundry while Dr. Calvin stayed in Brockville N.Y. and Fisher reported to him frequently. Calvin finally moved to Hamilton, Ontario in 1839, after the Rebellion was over, and it was safe for an American to do so. Dr. Calvin McQuesten received his Degree of Doctor of Medicine in September 1830. He died October 20, 1885 in Hamilton Ontario and is buried in the Hamilton Cemetery.
2 In our records, Learned is Lerned, and it is the latter spelling that Margarette Lerned and the Lerned family use in their own personal correspondence. See W-MCP4-6.233 and many others. Isaac Baldwin McQuesten was born in 1847 and died in 1888.
3 According to our records, Estimate Baldwin died in 1851, (1816-1851). In 1853 Dr. Calvin married Elizabeth Fuller, his third wife. See the McQuesten Family Tree.
4 Dr. Calvin Brooks McQuesten died in 1912 (1837-1912).
5 Mary Jane Baker and Isaac Baldwin McQuesten were married on June 18th, 1873.
6 Ruby Baker McQuesten died on April 9, 1911, of consumption (tuberculosis).
7 Note the many different spellings of the name, which occur here, some of which Leona Beane McQuiston uses in her book: The McQuiston McCuiston and McQuesten Families 1620-1937