The McDonald family arrived in New York on 6 July 1866 via the ship Arkwright. The Thompson company records show that Edward purchased 6 1/2 adult food rations for the overland journey, which would be consistent with the traveling group on the ship, which consisted of 2 parents, and 8 children, about 5 of whom would need either no food rations or only 1/2 of an adult portion. The ship roster shows two babies, both under the age of 12 months. It is uncertain whether both made the overland trip. The baby, Elizabeth, is not seen on the 1870 census with the rest of the family. It is unknown whether she died before or after the family started with the Thompson company.