Item 0011 - Letter from Eric, approximately 1881

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Letter from Eric, approximately 1881

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CA MUA MG 1022-4-048-0011

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  • approximately 1881 (Creation)
    Creator
    Harrington, Eric, 1877-1895
    Place
    Métis-sur-Mer (Québec)

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(1877-1895)

Biographical history

Sir William Dawson’s grandson, John Eric Harrington (always known as Eric), was the oldest of the Harrington children. Born in 1877 in Pictou, Nova Scotia, he was a sickly child who suffered from a number of ailments, but it was probably tuberculosis that unfortunately killed him January 24, 1895, at the early age of 17, in the opinion of his physician uncle Rankine Dawson. Much of his mother, Anna Dawson Harrington’s time, especially during the early 1890s, was spent organizing the house in Montreal at 293 University (now 3641) around his needs, and traveling various place in hopes of healing him. He and his mother spent two months at Saranac Lake in the fall of 1894, but Edward Livingston Trudeau, the expert on tuberculosis at the time, declared his case “hopeless.” During his final months at home, the other children in the Harrington family were sent next door to their grandmother’s house when they became ill, so as not to expose Eric. Nevertheless, Eric seems to have been active in photography and sketching when he was feeling well. He also liked reading science journals, of which there were plenty at his grandfather’s home as well as his own. Some of the photographs in the McGill archives, mostly from an album with his name on it, were taken by Eric.

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Letter from Eric, with illustrations of fish and bonfire.

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Accession no.

1584/26

Reference number

33

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  • Box: M-1022-63