W4592 TO [REV.] CALVIN MCQUESTEN from his brother Thomas B. McQuesten
Jul 2 1902 Wednesday
My dear Cal,
Rec'd your letter on my birthday1 all right and was very glad to get it altho' I hardly expected after you letter to Niagara.
We got back here on Saturday and I was glad enough to get altho' I can't complain of my treatment down there.
About the canoe scheme don't know whether it is possible or not. It will cost me about $11 altogether made up as follows for repairs $7, cartage $1, freight on the boat to Hamilton $1 and keeping it for the season $2. Now I have $6 myself and that is all. Possibly I can raise the rest. Massey's of course does not need to paid right away. It seems rather a shame to let a canoe go for the sake of $5. If you think the scheme is good right [sic] to mamma as soon as possible dwelling upon the advantages and especially the fun you will get out of it when you are up and will be some fun too. If mamma thinks that you will get some fun out of it, the scheme will go right away so write as soon as possible as the boat is waiting at a boat builders in Toronto till he hears from me. Mamma comes home on Friday.
I have just got the class lists and I made first class honours in Economics and and [sic] History our two most important subjects, coming 3rd in the first and 7th in the second. I can still [?] on the course.
Yours in Haste
1 Tom was born June 30, 1882.
2 Tom and Calvin were hoping to convince their mother to allow them to purchase a canoe, but she refused, claiming that "the anxiety is more than I can stand, your time at home will be very brief and the girls want to have all the fun with you possible," and says to Calvin "I know you need all your money" (W4601).
Money was tight for the family at this time, and Calvin was working hard writing for the Montreal Herald for little pay and Ruby had taken a teaching job in Ottawa to help pay for Tom's university education, see Ruby's biography. Additionally, Calvin had a disability that weakened his left hand, his mother would have worried about his ability to handle a canoe and it appears that Calvin did in fact need some help handling a canoe. This did not stop him from canoeing later in life, however, and he greatly enjoyed the activity.