W4810 TO [REV.] CALVIN MCQUESTEN from his mother, Mary Baker McQuesten
Feb 26 1903
To: Calvin McQuesten Montreal Quebec
My dear dear boy,
Well, Well! To think of my son going Fox-hunting! What next! I am thankful the fox escaped, that his death is not on your head1. I fancy you would have a good afternoon outing, but I should think you would be pretty tired. We renewed Mary Baldwin's [daughter] subscription, a dollar seemed so little and it might encourage the Herald a little. From Ruby's letter you must have had a pleasant out-time in Ottawa, only so very short. Those wretched trains are never on time. R.[Ruby] seemed to think you made yourself very entertaining, it was a pity the Robinsons lived so far out, it took up more time.
After I wrote you last week I think I had a touch of Grip and hurried along up to the Caroline St. mission to take the Mother's meeting on Friday, I tumbled down and between the two my poor old bones ached so much that I have not felt very smart. Was so provoked people will think I am always tumbling about. However it was well it was no worse.
Was reading in the Herald, the article on Mr. Steen I did not think you wrote it, for the writer (who was he?) got mixed up in his sentences quite badly. Just reading the article, I should think Mr. Steen had been advanced too rapidly, that he either lost his head, perhaps he was not conceited, but sometimes when men have got a little learning they take up new notions and lose themselves.
In Tom's letter to-day he tells of the Zetes' banquet on Saturday night some of the old members were present from Montreal, New York, and Condon, Governor of the Yukon, who was a nice chap, very fine looking in his evening clothes and made a very interesting speech on Alaskan boundary and told many interesting things. Tom thought the banquet better than Varsity dinner2.
Yes it was quite encouraging to make that extra share in Bk. of Montreal and selling the old Lodge property got back $100. of old interest. It all comes at a very opportune time. Hilda is off to Puritan Fair at Y.M.C.A., she is a puritan maiden dressed in grey lining dress with white fichu cap & cuffs. The Old Boys Carnival in August is to be great affair, they say you must try & get your holidays then. Have you got any one in City Editor's place that you like? Is Ken Trigge away or what is he doing now3? Hope to write a more interesting letter next time, but very stupid to-day. With much love.
Your loving Mother
1 This is likely a reference to an article Calvin had written about fox-hunting on snowshoes: "Snow-Shoers Follow the Hounds" (W8108). It is typewritten and dated Montreal, Quebec, February 25 . It describes the sporting event as a "novel idea" which occurred at Le Montagnard Snow-Shoe Club "last Saturday." He claimed that "it is by no means extraordinary" that good snow-shoers could cover five miles in thirty-seven minutes, and in soft snow conditions could "hold their own in a race with a pack of hounds." Fifty members participated and kept up for a time, but after eight or ten miles of plunging over rail fences and into creeks, the scent was lost. Then the hunstmen started on the run home to the Canadian Hunt Club where they were hosted and "over the bounteous supper congratulated each other upon the discovery of so fascinating a sport and plotted the outwitting of Brer fox." I have been unable to find the published article, it may have appeared elsewhere than in The Montreal Herald (W4810, W8160, W4821). Mary commented in her letter of March 12, 1903: "Tom is daring me that the next thing you will do is 'to play the races.' The Sporting spirit will seize you before I know where you are" (W4821).
2 Tom was president of the Zetes (Zeta Psi) fraternity (Best 8).
3 For Kenelm Trigge and family, see W4635.