W-MCP3-5.077 TO THOMAS BAKER MCQUESTEN from Miss Isabel Elliot
Mar 29 1907 Good Friday
To: Thomas B. McQuesten Jackson St. [Whitehern] Hamilton, Ontario
From: Toronto, Ontario [Postmark]
You would laugh, Timmy dear, if you could see how I have tried to dodge the little lady this [evening?] to write a line to you without letting her see me. I have given it up and she is about two feet from me & will ask me in two [minutes?] to whom I am writing. I may dodge but I shan't get ahead in the end. It does not matter, in the least--I am not ashamed or shy or any thing of that sort--just a wee delight in keeping things to myself sometime. I shall tell you why I was so stupid at the telephone yesterday when I see you.
This has been the busy morning for me--The other work & baking these days. Good Mrs. E. went to service so I must have lunch ready when she returns.1
I don't know whether Billy will be up for dinner this evening or not. If he had a telephone I would write him, as it is, we shall not expect him till we see him. If he does not come today I shall get the [?] to him some way tomorrow.
That was something I wanted to congratulate you on. I have only read half the essay, but think you may feel very proud of it. It may be not quite so smoothly connected as possible, but I think it particularly well worded. All your good reading must help you in your way of expressing yourself and I was quite filled with admiration--quite puffed with pride, in fact. I think it very ["g" crossed out] clever. It is much ahead of Alex Hill's. I hope Bill will bring his effort up and I shall be able to give you some more nice speeches.3
You are probably up to your eyes in packing the treasures you want & every one else would throw out [sic]. They will all [?] with you at home & let you have your [own?] [?] way & you will have the joy of unpacking the things in a few months.
Yesterday [Elsie?] & I went out to Jack [Uscher's?] home in Eglinton. Such a pretty house as he has! He has three horses, two cows, & an Irish terrier, besides a wife & two babies. The house is very English & is pretty and the garden will be lovely. You must walk out with me some day--when you are dying for a tramp. I must tell you of a funny experience we had out there. It is too long to write. I had no idea, how far out the Gartshores to be or I would have thrown a glance in for you.
[Now?] I tell you see how beautifully I shall address this letter in a business envelope, in a masculine hand.2
This afternoon I want to go over & see Mrs. Taylor & her new baby & take a giftie to it.
The town is very lonely without you. It always is Tom the sky is overly dull & dreary over your absence. It looks as if it might weep.--If it does, I shall not. It is enough for me to blush (is that correct?).
Be sure you come home Monday, and telephone to me. [I will?] run out after lunch about two so don't call me then. It will be the joyous moment after being away so long.
[In the meantime?] I am [?]
Believe me dear old boy
I. E. [Isabel Elliott]
P.S. There are great woes at our house. The dearly beloved could not come for Easter. Poor [?] is most disappointed. It is too bad for the child.
1 This suggests that Miss Isabel Elliot may have been a daughter, a relative, a servant, or a fellow student in the boarding house.
Miss Isabel Elliot was the young woman to whom Tom was rumoured to have been engaged, however, they did not marry. Tom's mother did not approve. See W5868, W6012, and the four letters in Isabel's own hand,
W-MCP3-5.076, W-MCP3-5.074, W-MCP3-5.077, W-MCP3-5.075.
Miss Elliot enclosed a photo of herself in W-MCP3-5.074, which is attached to that letter here on this site. She is shown seated on the steps and is holding a dog, and on the reverse side of the photo are the words "Love me, love my dog," IMG232.
Another photo of Isabel Elliot (a similar likeness) appears in the yearbook of University of Toronto, Class of '05 and that photo appears here at the head of this letter, IMG235. The yearbook states: "A countenance in which did meet,/Sweet records, promises so sweet."
"Although born in Brampton, Isabel Elliot graduated from the Parkdale Collegiate and entered the English and History Courses of '05. One of the sweetest and most charming of the many charming girls in the year, her unfailing sympathy and evenness of disposition have made her deservedly popular, as may be seen from the fact that she has held office in the Class Executive, the Woman's Lit., and the Woman's Athletic Association. Isabel will have the best wishes of all her fellow students in whatever career she may elect to follow."
Note: If anyone has any further information about Miss Elliot, please contact this site.
2 This letter indicates that attempts were being made to keep the the relationship secret.
3 "Billy" may have been William Elliot, and he may have been Isabel's brother. There was a William Elliot in Tom's graduating class of 1907. (Information from: Ginny Lowes
University of Toronto
Assistant Manager, Alumni + Donor Records. Lowes also states that further information can be found at the Robarts Library in the class yearbooks.