Government for the People

I am reading  CANADA – A PORTRAIT IN LETTERS.  It’s a series of selected letters over the last 200 years from the National Archives and other collections.  I found it misfiled in the Biography section of the library and it looked interesting.

On page 347,  Mrs Thomas Perkins writes to the Prime Minister R.B Bennett in Ottawa.  She and her husband are impoverished prairie farmers in their 60’s.  Ailing, isolated and working desperately through freezing conditions on their failing farm, she asks the Prime Minister to send her husband a pair of new Eatons’ ‘underware’.  Her husband’s long johns are finally  unmendable and they can’t afford new ones.  Her man spends his days out in the cold  and if he can just get a new pair, they can somehow carry on. 

The Prime Minister’s office replied that, despite being inundated with such requests – and in view of Mr. Perkin’s health- an order had been forwarded to the T. Eaton Co. for a pair of high grade, heavyweight, Wolsey underwear which “I trust you will receive in due course.”


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