Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bellamy Letters #5

722 Dufferin St.

My Dear Gerty,

I was very pleased indeed to receive your nice long letter as I have often wondered if you had forgotten all about us. Of course we understand how hard it must have been for you to write after losing your dear sister. Poor Dorothy! She must have suffered dreadfully and although it was hard indeed to lose her, you must be thankful to think she is at last with your dear mother & free from her pain.

You will be lonely dear & I too wish you were nearer to us, or that we were nearer to you so that we could visit one another & be the chums that we naturally would have been, had we stayed in England. Now that the ice is broken through, you must write to me often & promise I will answer promptly & we will soon seem to know one another better.

Do you ever write to Aunt Eliza at Holbeach? I think you would like to go & stay with them sometimes for holidays. We used to love going to Holbeach when were children, we don't hear from them very often now. I don't know whether any of the girls are married but John was married a year or two ago.

Well dear, I will try to tell you all about your relations here. We have four uncles.
Uncle Sam, the eldest (next to your mother in age) is married & has five children. The eldest girl is about 15 years old & there are two girls & two boys younger than her. We don't see much of them as they don't live near to us & I don't like Aunt Maggie & so don't care to go there.

Next is Uncle Will, he has three girls & two boys. They are dear little children, just like steps in ages, the eldest little girl is about 10 years old. They live out at Toronto Junction & so will not be far from the friends whose address you sent in your letter.

Uncle Ben is next & he is a widower, his wife died about two years after they were married since we have been here & left one little girl,now about six years old. Grandma has berought her up entirely & she is a dear little girlie. May is her name. Then there is Uncle Charlie, who is only half brother to my mother & yours. He is not married & so of course lives at home with Grandpa.

Then you know all about our family. Harry, Jack, Gladys & I. Harry, I am sorry to say has been practically an invalid for the last five years. He had a hemmorage of the brain as the result of a sunstroke, & never got over it altogether Jack is away from home just now & we miss him so much. He has got a position in Welland, Ont. He only went last Monday & so we don't know yet how he will get along.

Gladys of course is still at school & I am still in the same office as when I wrote you last.

Now I think I have told you about your cousins & Uncles - Aunts except mother - you have none, because I am quite sure you wouldn't like either of our Uncles' wives, none of us can get along with them.

I certainly think you had better persuade your Father to let you come over here for a trip - just to see us all. It is not very expensive nowadays & it certainly would do you good. I'll guarantee you would not worry about your lungs any more after you had had a few months of our really beautiful climate. It would entirely remove any trace of consumption if you have it. Of course you would be quite run down after nursing poor Dorothy for so long & it is no wonder you felt the effects of it. I guess you'll be strong enough though with proper care & so don't take any notice of those kind (?) friends who try to frighten you. I do hope you will try to persuade your Father to let you come & stay with us for a few months. I quite understand that he would not like the thought of your coming for good, but he might let you come for a holiday. It would be better than paying doctor's bills & would be more lasting good. You might be a strong woman all your life with such a change as this.

Mother says she thinks Grandpa would die happy if he could see you, but he has a very great desire to see you. He is pretty well just now but, as you know, he is getting old & of course his health is very uncertain. He is well one day & ill the next. I suppose Grandma has answered your letter, or will very soon. Write to them oftener dearie, they are so delighted to hear from you.

I am indeed sorry t hear what a very unpleasant person your step-mother is. She must have a horrible disposition to be so mean to you when you had so much trouble too.

Oh Gerty, if you were only here we could comfort you a little bit surely. It does seem hard to think you are so much alone when we would be so glad to have you here. Of course you have good friends but they are never quite like your own people & you must be very lonely sometimes.

I have a very dear friend in England. I have corresponded with her ever since we left Kirton. We write to each other nearly every week, so you can guess what chums we are. Maybe you will remember Dorothy Dickinson. She has two brothers who came out here a couple of years ago & they have taken a farm out in Saskatchewan. She is hoping to join them next year & keep house for them in their log shanty. You must save up your pennies & come out when she does & see this beautiful country of ours. I wouldn't live in England again for anything. I would very much like to go over for a holiday & hope to do so some day but I don't think I would want to stay very long.

There are lots of people who are building their homes & digging wells etc, as your friends tell you they are doing. Most of the English people I know who have come here are quite happy & wouldn't go back to live on any account.

When you write again, tell me if your are collecting Post Cards, if so, I will send you some so that you can see what this place is like.

Don't forget so send the photos as we are very anxious to see them & I will send you mine & also the others as soon as we get some. We are not very good at getting photos taken & so haven't any around the house which I can send just now.

Well Gerty, I think I must close now. Please write to me again soon, I shall be very disappointed if I have to wait so long again for a letter from you.

We all send our fondest love to you dearie in kind regards to your father

Your loving cousin

You will notice we have moved again since I wrote you last.


  1. More work to do..who is Aunt Eliza in Holbeach?

  2. Thanks to Ruairidh, I now have page 5 of the original hand-written letter and I am editing the transcription to add it. The addition continues to talk about our family in Canada and was a very important piece to me because it mentions my grandfather, Jack Bellamy.

    The missing page starts with Uncle Charlie.

  3. Aunt Eliza in Holbeach was Eliza Smith, sister to Elizabeth Rason's mother, Mary Creak Smith. Eliza married Josiah Triffitt and the family lived in Holbeach.