W3236 TO REV. THOMAS BAKER from his daughter-in-law Maria [Mudge] Baker
Jul 3 1878
To: Rev. Thomas Baker 3 Bold Street, Hamilton, Ontario
From: Paris, Ontario
[The following is written vertically under the date:] if you can do any thing for me I do hope you will
Dear Mr. Baker,
necesity1 compells me to do this I have tried very hard to get along my self I have no earthy way to pay what I owe and to have my things sold would not do but little towards paying for them I shall [be] very sorry to have I my poverty exposed but it must be done if I can get no help I am quite
willing to be turned out peniless, but I want to pay those debts and if you will be kind enough to help me I will be so thankfull and never trouble you again [.]2 [T]he children were well clothed William had three good suits Maud four
Hariette four and lottie about the same good underclose all made up well you can speek to the children about them [.] [T]he last money you sent and what I got of John I paid all I could share of it I got myself a print dress and a pair of
boots which I could not do with out I do not know what I am to do my helth is so bad I can work well for a day or two and then I am down again sick [.] Nellie3 is only twelve years old to young to earn anything but I will do the best I can Minnie told me that if her father had not have maried me they would each been worth a thousand dollars more [.] I am sorry for them they need it [.] I am not sorry I maried him he was worth having I did not expect a perfect man nor he did not expect perfection in me we were satisfied with each
other and I think if it had not been for our children we
would have been better off time will prove all your as ever
Mrs. James A. Baker [Maria (Mudge) Baker]
1 Spelling and punctuation errors have been preserved during transcription. Any changes to punctuation are indicated by [ ]. For ease of reading, we have omitted the usual [sic] indications for errors.
2 Rev. Baker had been providing financial support for Maria as she was still caring for several of the seven dependent stepchildren she had "inherited" after the death of her husband, James Alfred Baker. However, in 1878, her eldest stepchild, John P. Baker, reported to Rev. Baker a rumour that Maria was keeping gentlemen callers for undue lengths of time and, as a result, the Reverend removed the children from Maria's care (see W3155).
Thomas Hampson Baker, Maria's brother-in-law, had also pleaded with Rev. Baker to help Maria pay down her debts as she had spent all of the money on the children and very little on herself (W3232).
3 Nellie was Maria's daughter, presumably from a previous marriage although we have yet to confirm that Maria had been previously married and, if so, to whom.