Saturday, January 29, 2011

Letter 7: So Bloomingly Poor

June 28, 1911
Richmond Quebec

Dear Father,

Your will see by the heading where I am. I only got here Monday evening for I went to Hudson with the Fields' and had a fine time. They have a cottage by the lakeside and they also have a motor boat where I spent most of my time.

Then one of the men there had a yacht and he took us for a sail from Hudson to Ste. Anne's and back and after all I find Richmond quite a nice place although it looks queer without a station.

Did I tell you that we really have got an increase of salary for next year so that I will be getting $650 next year and they have given me the next class on my way to the top so that my work I hope will be easier.

The next time you see me you will find me sporting a pair of glasses. I had Dr. Byers examine my eyes and he said that I should wear them all the time but I find that very hard to do and a great deal of the time they stay in their case.

Mother, Edith and Flora have gone to our opera house to hear the famous Lorne Elwyn and I am keeping house with Floss for protection from the tramps. Last night Dr. Skinner took us for a ride from Corris nearly to Trenholmville. It was great and the first time I have been cool for a week.

Since I have not been here very long I have not any Richmond news so will close for this time.



Hudson is a picturesque town on the Lake of Two Mountains, 20 miles off the western tip of the island of Montreal. In 1910 the place would have been a rather remote vacation site. Ste Anne de Bellevue is a town right at the Western tip of the island. In 1911 the site of Macdonald Agricultural College and School of Domestic Science as well as Macdonald Teachers School. The campus now houses John Abbott CEGEP (Junior and Technical College) as well as McGill Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences.

On May 1, 1911, while still at work at her school in Montreal, Marion sent this important letter to her Mother.

Tower Street,
May 1, 1911
Dear Mother,

This is just to let you know that I am still alive and as homely as ever. Got your letter with news of the dance in it and had it not been that I was so bloomingly poor, I might have called on you and perhaps stayed over night. Edith will soon be going home - in about two weeks I think.

There is not much doing now but the Horse Show which as I have not a beau I am not going. Mrs. Ellis (boarding house matron)had two tickets sent to her for tonight so she is taking Edith with her.

I was up at the Cleveland's Wednesday evening to play bridge and last Friday Mrs. Wylie phoned and asked me to tea to meet a nice man. Of course, I went on the jump. The man turned out to be a Mr. Blair from Three Rivers, a brother of Margaret McLeod's husband.

I have had my white coat cleaned and am getting a new skirt to go with it and last Saturday I got busy and washed and ironed my linen one. It is time for me to go out and eat so will say adieu for the present.

Lovingly, M A Nicholson ESQ (Men only wrote esquire after their name so this is a joke)

The Horse Show was a yearly event. A special multi-page feature in the 1910 Montreal Star about the year's Horse Show lead with this rather ironic statement:"The automobile shall never replace the horse in man's affections." Whoops!

Young women in 1910 in the city, especially, were still introduced to eligible men through mutual friends and not through chance meetings.

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