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Dec 15 1882
To: Rev. Thomas Baker 3 Bold Street, Hamilton, Ontario
From: Portrush, Ireland

My dear Brother [in law],

I received your kind explanatory letter of the 3 Oct. just yesterday- it was forwarded to me where I had been stopping for some little time on a visit, but leaving for my home on the 15th Nov. I put down the same address as usual- The enclosed order came all right- I am not got to Portrush to have it paid but I am sure there will not be any mistake on account of the Dollard. I do sincerely thank you my dear brother, for your kind and generous gift- as also for the affection & kindness you still entertain and express for me- It is a source of great comfort and consolation to me under my sore trial & bereavement the loving manner in which both you and your dear daughter has written to me, giving me to know that our correspondence will not cease on account of the death of my dear loved Sister. I was very much affected by your letter everything about the sad event was so clearly and so touchingly described by you though so sad!- it was so gratifying to know that even the mortal Remains of my beloved sister were so tenderly, and carefully deposited, in such a lovely spot, where you & yours will also be laid beside her, when God pleases to call you. I could entertain no other feeling, nor any one belonging to my loved Sister but that both in life and in death you have acted the part of one of the best and kindest of husbands, as also that of a refined exteem gentleman in every act of life towards her and every letter she wrote home there was some praise of your kindnefs [sic] and thoughtfulnefs [sic] about her. I myself was a witnefs [sic] of all this.

I can well understand your feelings of desolation- no one on earth could ever make up her loss to you, you were one in every thought & feeling your life, blended together in to perfect harmony of Companionship, you can only look forward of having all this renewed in a happier world where death can never part.. My prayers, will ever be for you to be [??] freed, under your [??] 2nd Dear Mr. Baker you will please excuse this letter and see that I have not got black edged paper nor envelopes as I am writing at a place where there is neither- not being yet at my own home but on the way to it- I wished as soon as possible to answer your questions, as also to acknowledge the receipt of the enclosed order. Whc [sic][which] I do with many thanks by return of postmark. My dear late Sister was born on the date and year you Mention [viz??] 18.9. in the county of Donegall, not Tyrone. I think this is all you asked me- she was the favourite daughter of my beloved Father, out of eight to give you one proof of the love in which her memory is still held by her relatives in Ireland. The son who lives with our only brother at Dunmore, got married about a year since, and when his first child was born a little girl my brother requested that its first name should be Mary, and after its baptism he blessed it and said may you grow up to be a Gem and such a woman as my dead Sister Mary was! This happened only a few weeks ago- dear brother I know well your tears will often flow at the remembrance of her but surely it is a source of great consolation to you, to me & all who loved her that she is gone from all suffering & sorrow to be for ever with the Lord. And now with the fondest love to my dear Niece & Isaac- and all her little ones and praying that the blessing and comfort whc [sic] the God of all consolation alone can bestow.

I remain my dear brother yr. affec'te Sister,

C. McIlwaine

1 Catherine uses the archaic 'fs' and the more modern 'ss' interchangeably in this letter.

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The development of this website was directed by Mary Anderson, Ph.D. and Janelle Baldwin, M.A.
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