Victoria, B.C. 26 Dec 1872 4-page Marcus Smith Letter to his wife
Lot 89 in our auction Saturday 20th June 2020

Victoria B.C. 26th Dec. 1872

My dear Nannie,

As the newspapers are so careful in chronicaling my movements I need say no more than that I have been working my way lately down the east side of Vancouver island from Seymour narrows to Esquimalt some 160 miles I have got it all done but about 30 to 40 miles at this end I get a canoe (made out of a large cedar tree) and 3 or 4 Indians and paddle down the straits where the land is level and where the country is hilly I walk over it-the canoe following along shore- The weather has been rather fine- damp but not cold snow on the mountains but none in the valleys and camping out has not been disagreeable but on Sunday evening- 22 inches a heavy storm set in I was camped near the beach and in the morning I was buried in fully 1 ½ feet of snow and was still falling fast at nine in the morning we started along shore in the canoe- there was a very heavy swell on the sea. But at eleven o’clock we reached Horseshoe bay and I took shelter in the house of a settler such nice people (English) paid off my Indians staid all day and one night there- on Tuesday morning the coasting steamer “Maude” came along and I came down here just in time for xmas which I spent very quickly but pleasantly- dinner with Mr. Watt chief commissioner officer of the CPR surveys and brother in law to hon. Peter Mitchell- I am engaged almost every other day to dine out somewhere on Saturday I dine at doctor Helmken’s son in law of Sir J.A. Douglas- on new years day with Mr. Buckley engineer of the dry docks- he and his wife are English- very nice people and such pretty children. They spent six or seven years in India- today a steamer started to bring the last of the surveying parties home from Valdes Island- the plans and profiles of all the other parties are rapidly approaching completion- a steamer starts for San Francisco tomorrow and the next one a fortnight after about 9th or 10th Jany 1873. I shall send home by the latter all those of the surveying parties who live on the east side of the rocky mountains and may possibly come myself- but I am waiting instructions from Mr.Fleming – I hear there is a block on the Northern pacific Railway on this coast- by which the mails now come- so there have been no letters lately-

I hope you all spent a pleasant xmas and that Santi Claus did not forget to come and that the children had all been so good that he filled their stockings well- I am in excellent health and have been these last two months. I hope you have now got a servant- though they all seem to have vanished not only from Canada but from everywhere else-

Yours ever,

M. Smith

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