Dated: July 30 (1911)
Addressed to: Mr. N.C.Draper, Grand Coulee, Sask - My Dearest Noah
Mailed from: Huntsville, Ont.
Profession: Farmer's Daughter
Writing instrument: Fine point pen, black ink
Written on: Off-white, beautifully textured, linen-like paper, 9 inches x 7 inches, folded in half with a blue forget-me-not motif. This is standard early 20th century notepaper, pre-folded in booklet form. Ethel has written on the pages in booklet form numbering 1-4.
People/places mentioned in this letter:
Mother (usually called Ma) - *Ida Amelia Glover Nelson
- *Elva Mitchell - Ethel's cousin in Indian Head, Sask
- Aunt Sarah - *Sarah Elizabeth Glover, sister of Ethel's mother
- Ernie - Aunt Sarah's 9 yr old son
- Uncle *Emanuel Nelson - Ethel's Pa's paternal uncle
- Percy - Noah's brother in Saskatchewan
Mr Bradley's - the whole family as shown by use of the apostrophe
Mr Mays - no apostophe - unsure if him alone or family as well
Mrs. Wallace Youngs' mother
Places/things mentioned in this letter:
**The Lyceum Show
* Look under the Categories/Labels in the right side column for more posts on this
person/place/thing. If you don't see a label, use the search box at the top of page.
** see Genealogy Notes below
Mr N. C. Draper.
My Dearest Noah; -
I rec'd your letter
last week & was glad I'm sure to
get it. and to know you were still
able to be hard at work. & have a good
time. You must'nt work too hard
for that is what is killing me. So
take warning! 'ha ha'. Had a letter
from Mother on Sat Morning. they are
well, & have got the barn nearly done.
Poor Old mother working & me up here.
I was out for a row on Friday evening
Mr Bradley's took me & Mr Mays out
& say we certainly did enjoy ourselves.
We are going to have a private picnic.
Some of these days before I go home. I
just do wish you were here to go out
for a row. Say you don't want to get
to nce a girl. or I am afraid you
may. think she the only one. 'he'
I had a letter from Elva. asking me
to come & see her when I went west.
She has been made wise, "eh. Every body
even here in Huntsville seems to be.
Ernie here the other night, we had
company. Aunt Sarah was sort of
joking & Ernie shouted to the top of
his voice, She's going to get married.
I felt like saying. "You little rat".
Aunt Sarah & I were down town last
night to the Lyceum Show 1 play was
The shadow of the Past
Young man married a very extravagant
wife. she wanted a diamond necklace
but could'nt afford it, so her husband
stole it. So of course he had to go to jail
He returned after 30 yrs. all in rags &
his wife about the same. He did'nt
want to be friends & she did. finally
he pushed her over & she died. Oh
is'nt it awful to watch them
sometimes. & yet I enjoyed myself.
Mrs. Harman, Mrs Wallace Youngs' mother
is here this afternoon. My it is lonesome
on Sunday's. As you say, you're certainly
not far from me in my mind, but I
wish you were nearer. Well I have had my
tea & been to church & home again. it is
just a lonely evening. Uncle Emmanuel
Nelson isvery low I guess. the Doctor says
he cannot live long. & I would like
awfully well to be home to see him, but
dont know whether I will get there in time
or not. I expect to stay about 2 weeks
longer if it is so I can. I suppose there
isnt another boy in all the West like Percy's.
Your country surely isnt so forsaken
that the people here are all afraid to go
up there. No I dont know of anyone going up
Just at that time. "Wish I were". I guess I
have scribbled enough foolishness for this timew. So Bye Bye with love & kisses
from youre Sweetheart faraway. x x x x
x x x x x x x x x x x
When I googled "Lyceum Show" a list of Lyceum Theatres in the UK, US, and Canada appeared. My first thought was that it was a theatre chain such as the Odeon, Famous Players, and Strand theatres, among others. It wasn't.
My dictionary.com app shows the following definitions for lyceum:
1. an institution for popular education providing discussions, lectures, concerts, etc.
2. a building for such activities.
3. (cap.) the gymnasium where Aristotle taught, in ancient Athens.
4. a lycee.
Although many public speakers used the lyceum approach to promote their cause, the movement branched out into drama clubs, literary societies, Chautauqua, and vaudeville. Although some lyceums were traveling shows, many were permanent venues that still stand today.
For more information, check out these sites:
To get back to Ethel's letter, she attended a Lyceum Show with at least 2 plays. She doesn't say if it was a travelling Lyceum show, or a weekly or monthly event in a play or opera house. My research in Huntsville history hasn't overturned any information, and the local newspaper, The Huntsville Forester, isn't online.
However, I find her statement, "Oh is'nt it awful to watch them sometimes. & yet I enjoyed myself" a fascinating study of human nature.