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Date: April 21st 1917
William & Georgina Mercer
Reverend G.M. Joyce

[transcription and footnotes have been provided by the collection donor]

The Woodrow[70]
April 21, 1917

My dear Wm. Mercer

I am sorry I have not written before to thank you for your Easter Card. You must be thinking I do not care to hear from you, but it is not so at all, in fact I have been thinking more about Theodore & my friends there, the last few days than ever as we have had Wm. Spicer[71] to see us for 4 days & so it has brought it all back quite fresh. I am very busy now & have not much time for writing letters, I am working on a farm 9 hours a day & keep on most of my parish work as well so I don't have many spare minutes. Bread has gone up again here this week & is now 11p - 1/- in London and by all accounts this p[rices] will be much worse soon. I do hope you have good accounts of Dick[72], you must feel terribly anxious about him with all this terrible fighting[73] going on. It was very nice to have Wm. Spicer here, I almost envy him going back. He says with high prices for grain it has put people on their legs, so I hope you have got in some of those long outstanding debts & do not have to take quite so much "Barter"[74]! I hope you had some nice Easter services with all the sorrow & anxiety of the world to-day, the knowledge of the fact of the Resurrection is the only thing which can bring any joy into our lives, & perhaps all our sorrow & anxiety into quiet confidence. I must now stop & hope you & Mr. Mercer are both very well. I never had much opinion of the Doc[75]: I have less now, since I have heard!!

Remember me please to your John Smith's[76].

Yours ever
G.M. Joyce

[70] Details on this address are still being researched, it is assumed it is in a rural area and associated with some sort of Anglican Church.
[71] Wm. Spicer was likely an Anglican missionary with the "English Church Missionaries who came to Saskatchewan prior to 1913 to minister in the Theodore-Sheho district. Rev. G.M. Joyce was another minister with the Anglican Church in Saskatchewan. William Mercer was involved with the organization of the first Anglican Church in Theodore on or about 1909. Rev. Joyce attempts to join the British Army in 1918 but is refused permission by his Anglican bishop.
[72] "Dick" is Pte. Richard Mercer.
[73] This is the Battle of Arras and the major Canadian offensive at Vimy Ridge. Casualties would have been high during this offensive. Pte. Richard Mercer was held in reserve at Camiers, France while training with the Machine Gun Corps. Had the battle gone badly, he would have been moved forward as a replacement for heavier than expected casualties.
[74] This comment provides some insight into the financial state of the millinery store Georgina Mercer operated in Theodore. This store occupied the site currently in use by the Theodore Town Office and library. Theodore is a small village and the demand for fancier clothes may have been limited. At this time it is not known what level of investment income William Mercer received while in Canada.
[75] "Doc" is possibly Dr. Eakins from Theodore. Georgina Mercer was known to have suffered from eye problems and diabetes in the early 1920's based on other letters not included in this work.. At this time we are not sure what medical incident this comment is referring to.  There is also a photograph of Georgina Mercer with her husband and son; in this photograph she is wearing some loose-fitting, unfashionable shoes. There could be a further indication of foot and circulation problems that is common with diabetes. More research is required on this item.
[76] John Smith came to Theodore from Warwichshire, England in 1906, married Rose Marie Lestrange (Leicester) in 1908 and operated a general goods store . He appears to have had a significant influence on the business affairs in the Theodore.  This could have extended to the Anglican Church.