The correspondence series contains letters from various senders about the MacDonald Collection and/or special collections in general at the Mount. The bulk of the correspondence is between William MacDonald and Sister Francis de Sales and were written in the 1950s. These letters, which are predominantly written by MacDonald to Sister de Sales, usually accompanied shipments of books to the College or were sent separately at roughly the same time as a package of books. In these letters, Mr. MacDonald typically sends greetings and brief life updates. More significantly however, these letters also highlight or comment on a few books within a particular shipment, noting interesting physical details about the books, commenting on the topics of the books or its authors, their origin and their price. It is interesting to note that while these mentioned books may represent the personal literary tastes of MacDonald, he approaches many of his descriptions from an economic lens, reflecting his profession as an accountant and investor.
There are also letters written by and received by William MacDonald from various persons. These include correspondence with booksellers, mainly informing William of requested books that have already sold, or offering the first selection on new acquisitions. There is also correspondence with and about the author George Bernard Shaw, in regards to an Engles book Shaw had inscribed and signed. William MacDonald’s family are also within the correspondence which includes a letter to his sister Teresa (also known as Sister Mary Aquinas), and letters from his sisters Katherine and Minnie written to the librarians of the Mount thanking them for their condolences on the occasion of William’s death. The original death notice via telegram is also within the records.
The series also includes two letters from Katherine McLennan to Sister Francis de Sales regarding two books she donated to the Mount to be included in the Special Collections (i.e. the MacDonald Collection). One of these books is a handwritten manuscript of prayers written in Mi’kmaq ideograms which is currently housed in the MacDonald Room pending repatriation.
Other letters include more modern correspondence from Mount librarians on topics related to the MacDonald collection, such as research inquiries or research conducted about the collection.