Author of Letter: Ethel Isabell Nelson, age 21
Dated: March 26th, 1911
Addressed to: Mr N. C. Draper, Grand Coulee
Mailed from: Belhaven, Ontario
Profession: Farmer's Daughter
Writing instrument: Fine point pen, Black ink
Written on: Slightly thick, textured linen-like paper, 9 inches x 6.5 inches. Once again, Ethel has written page 2 and 3 lengthwise so you have to turn the letter after the first page and then turn it back for the final page.
People mentioned in this letter:
- Maud Bruels - friend of Ethel, I'll add a post card from her soon
- Frank Tomilson and Bessie Chapman*
- Stanley Mahoney and May Anderson*
- Elgin Barker and Ada Boadway*
- Veda - (Veda Perrault, daughter of Noah's sister, Eva & Joseph Perault)
- Jim Barker*
- Update on the Draper move west posted below under Genealogical Notes*
Belhaven Mar 26th 1911
Mr. N.C. Draper,
My Dear Noah. --
I have just come
home from Church, and I am
very thankful . I am here . for it
is raining quilt hard. There were
not many out, I guess it was
Maud Bruels came
home with us from Sunday
School and stayed for tea. Say. she
is quilt a girl. She is talking of
going out to British Columbia in about
Do you remember Frank Tomilson!
He is engaged to Bessie Chapman.
They say she is only sixteen. I think
She is to young. (just like myself.) dont you?
They are to be married in June.
Stanley Mahoney and May Anderson.
are also engaged, and Elgin Barker and
Ada Boadway Suppose there are lots
Will you soon be starting seeding?
I don't think it will be long before they
get started here. Pa has hired a foreigner
for a while, He is quilt a musician.
Well Noah I wish you did not
live so far away. I think if you were
nearer here time would pass or seem to
pass much quicker. for me anyway.
Hope you are having a good
time all these days.
Suppose Veda is studying hard
ready to try for her Entrance.
Was reading a story in one of
your magazines last night
"River Robers." I think it was fine.
Am reading Uncle Tom's Cabin now.
It is quite nice.
Jim Barker starts for the West
next Monday. I dont know just what
post he is going to. I think I have
did some poor writing to night,
as you say all blots & blurs & blunders
are kisses. I think there are a good
many of them.
I can't think of any thing
much more that I can write. But
if you were only here. Guess I could
talk awhile. If I was'nt to overjoyed,
Will be looking for your letter.
and waiting for the time when it will
be you I am looking to see come. Good-Bye
xxx x x x from Yours. Ethel
included a 1911 census. The census was taken in June of that year and lists Bessie as being 17 yrs old with a birthday in Dec.
Yet another suggested relevant record was Bessie's marriage certificate to Frank Tomilson. I pulled it up and guess what? It shows that Frank married Bessie on Aug 16, 1911 except it lists Bessie's age as 19 yrs old...
*Stanley Mahoney and May Anderson: The Mahoney's have been mentioned twice in these letters so far:
- Mar 12, Dear Noah - a brief mention about Mr. Mahoney's buggy
- Mar 20, Dear Ethel - an explanation of the Mahoney Family
According to the 1911 census, 22 yr old Stanley Mahoney is one of Della's younger brothers. When I clicked on Stanley, suggested relevant records showed up in the sidebar of his census record and one of them was a marriage record which showed that Stanley Mahoney and Edith Mae Anderson would marry in Belhaven on June 17th, 1912. According to Voters Lists, the Stanley Mahoney family would stay in the area for many years.
*Elgin Barker and Ada Boadway: I searched for Elgin Barker with a spouse named Ada and their location as Gwillimbury Township, York County, Ontario, Canada - the same location as Ethel - and the first thing that popped up was their marriage certificate. Here's their story... In Oct of 1912, 28 yr old Elgin and 22 yr old Ada would marry in nearby Sutton. There is no mention of Elgin and Ada in the 1916 Census for the Canadian NorthWest Territories (now Saskatchewan), so we don't know if they ever made it to the West. However, in Nov of 1919, Elgin Barker, his wife, Ada, and their 4 children crossed the international border at Niagara Falls with a destination of New York. While searching the newspaper for info on Elgin Barker, this showed up:
However, while checking the newspaper to see if Jim Barker ever went west, I came upon this notice:
According to other reports in this Newmarket newspaper, the sound of bells is used when there's a rumour of impending marriage but it hasn't officially been announced. I assume this is the rumour of engagement between Elgin and Ada.