Marjorie G. Jones* In the summer of 1887, when she was twenty-seven, Philadelphia Quaker Mary Morris Vaux, along with her father and two brothers, trekked 10,000 miles by rail, carriage, stagecoach, ferry, horseback and on foot through the American West and Canada. Although it wasn't the first trip west for the prominent Quaker family, it was their introduction to the Canadian Rockies, and it changed their lives. In box 69 of the Morris-Shinn-Maier family papers at the Quaker Collection at Haverford College, there is a remarkable 120-page travelogue, documenting the trip and written in letter form by Mary Morris Vaux to Hannah Morris.1 Much of the correspondence regarding their yearly travels to Canada has been deposited by Vaux family members at the Whyte Museum in Banff, British Columbia, and two albums of photos taken by the family on the 1887 trip are held at The Library Company in Philadelphia; but the charming and informative travelogue, found among the Morris papers at Haverford, stands by itself as a daily record of nearly four months of ambitious, informed and intense travel. The chronicle illuminates the extraordinary natural beauty of the developing but still rustic American and Canadian West, while providing
Quaker History – Friends Historical Association
Published: May 19, 2011
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