We Get to See Maud’s Wedding Trousseau

In June 1911 L.M. Montgomery was married Ewan Macdonald, to whom she’d been secretly engaged for five years. The engagement was long and secret because Montgomery was obligated to live with and look after her grandmother in their little house in Cavendish, PEI. Maud’s grandmother — her mother’s mother, born Lucy Anne Woolner — died, after suffering from “grippe” in March 1911.

After she came to Leaskdale, Maud wrote an account of the months after her grandmother’s death:

“Now that poor grandmother had gone there was no longer any reason for delaying my already long-deferred marriage and it was arranged that Ewan and I should be married early in July. A little over a year previously he had left P.E. Island and taken a congregation in Leaskdale, Ont. I felt badly over the prospect of leaving the Island. But since I had left Cavendish it did not matter so much…

“I had a very busy spring, preparing for my marriage and new home — so busy that most of my ordinary pursuits were dropped for the time being….

“…My trousseau, which I had made mainly in Toronto and Montreal, began to arrive and we were all interested in that. My things were pretty. I had worn black for grandmother all the spring but I laid it aside when I was married, My wedding dress was of white-silk crepe de soie with tunic of chiffon and pearl bead trimming — and of course the tulle veil and orange blossom wreath.” Selected Journals Volume 2, page 61

Volume 2 of the Selected Journals of L.M. Montgomery contains photographs of Maud modelling six of the outfits she had made for her trousseau ( page 65). For the 100th anniversary of Maud’s marriage and move to Ontario, reproductions of the outfits have been commissioned by Tourism PEI. The new garments have been completed with attention to authentic details like colour, fabric, trim, and closings (no zippers!).

Now we are delighted to announce that the reproduced dresses will arrive in Leaskdale in early June, on loan  to the Lucy Maud Montgomery Society. The trousseau will be displayed during the summer and fall in the master bedroom of the manse.

That’s one other reason to put the Historic Leaskdale Sites on your list of places to visit in the coming months.

Barb Pratt




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~ Lucy Maud Montgomery

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