By Mary Savigny

Bon Echo: The Denison Years files the period while well-known artists, intellectuals and theatrical personalities visited the strikingly attractive Lake Mazinaw sector in Ontario's rugged Land O' Lakes district, to either play and paintings. From the development of Bon Echo resort via American Dr. Weston cost to the construction of trendy Bon Echo Provincial Park, the writer has been aware of the "inside" tale. The struggles and beliefs of the early Toronto feminist flowers MacDonald Denison and her author-playwright son, Merrill, are good recorded during this very important ebook. the writer, a very good storyteller, evidently discovered lots from the previous grasp in the course of her a long time as his manuscript typist, a dating that ended with Merrill Denison's dying in 1975.

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She became associated with Emiline Pankhurst, the famous English leader of the International Women's Suffrage Union. She discovered the writings of Walt Whitman, whose ideals of democracy and equality of the sexes matched her own. Expecting her baby and at odds with the Canadian political climate, Flora refused to bear her child in Canada and, with her sister Effa, departed for Detroit where Merrill was born on the 23rd of June, 1893. S. citizenship because his father also was American born. Merrill presented me with his mother's copy of Whitman's Poetical Works in which she had written: "As long as a flag waves over a person disenfranchised on account of sex, that flag is not big enough for me—so long as 47 BON ECHG a church refuses absolute equality to women with men, so long as it closes its pulpits to the natural teachers and preachers of our race, just so long is that church too small for me.

The estimated loss was $25,000, only partly covered by Merrill's insurance. In the ensuing years the Denisons followed their set pattern of winters in the city and summers at Bon Echo. Driving north from New York, their routine was to break the journey at Perth to stay a couple of days with their old friends, Winnie and Cyril Inderwick, who lived in the beautiful old house, "Inge-Va," on Craig Street. It is famous as the site of the last duel fought in Canada and now is one of Perth's tourist attractions.

He was not interested in fishing, hunting or even bird watching. He once told me he had been given a BB gun when he was a youngster. Taking aim at a robin it fell to the ground and Merrill realized he had killed for no good reason. Never again would he hold a gun with intent to kill. One would suppose that his main interest in owning Bon Echo would have been the opportunities to hunt, fish and ramble over the countryside. But not so. Upon arrival at Bon Echo, usually in May, he would park the car between Dollywood and Greystones.

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