Monday, December 22, 2014

Canadian Week in Review - 22 December 2014

I have come across the following Canadian websites, social media websites, and newspaper articles this past week that were of interest to me, and I thought you might be interested in them, too.

1856 - Street Lights in Ottawa
   The city of Ottawa has had an interesting history of street lighting. In 1856, the first gas street lights were turned on at Sparks, Rideau, Sussex, York, and Nicholas Streets in Ottawa, They still had to be lit by a lamplighter each night. Streets were first lit by whale oil lamps, and electric arc lights were established in 1885.

1883 - Bridge over Niagara Falls
   In 1883, a cantilever bridge was opened between the United States and Canada at Niagara Falls. The 150-metre bridge was the first to be called a cantilever.

Social Media

(Tweet) Winter on Hollis Street, Halifax, ca. 1947

(Blog) Elgin County Virtual Tour Link - Thomas Talbot
   Go to and read about Colonel Thomas Talbot.

(Video) Historic Pinkston forge moved to new location in Brigus
   A 125-year-old building took a short trip in Brigus on Monday.
   The Pinkston forge was recently donated to the local heritage society by the family that owned it.



From Newfoundland and Labrador to Beaumont-Hamel

   The 774 Air Cadet Squadron will visit the site where Newfoundland Regiment’s somber engagement at Beaumont-Hamel took place on July 1, 1916, during the Battle of the Somme. It will mark the 100th anniversary of the battle.
Saint John's oldest church up for sale for $134,900
   St. George's Anglican Church, built in 1821, has been put on the market for $134,900, including its hall and three city lots.

Nova Scotia

Pictou paintings offer a glimpse into its industrial history
   Stephanie Robertson has a 20-painting exhibition at Stone Soup Cafe and Catering on Water Street in her hometown of Pictou. About half the show is about the railroad, only a memory in today's world.

Ottawa to fund $35.7-million in Quebec City historical projects
   Prime Minister Stephen Harper has announced $35.7-million in funding for historical and archeological projects in Quebec City, while opening the door to further federal funding for a tall-ships regatta that will stop in the city in 2017.


Royal Ontario Museum to host exhibits from Franklin expedition
   This fall a team made up of specialists with Parks Canada and National Defence found a wreck submerged in 11 metres of water complete with a bell will all the identifying markers of the Erebus - and it has been found, and now is the centre of a exhabit at the Royal Ontario Museum.
Blackwell & Beddoe Lawrence: The maple leaf has symbolized Canada for 50 years, but its origins are still misunderstood
   When a committee began lobbying to have the city of Brockville designated as "the birthplace of the Canadian flag" and John Matheson, their MP in the 1960s, as "the father of the flag." Both claims are unfounded, and have recently ignited heated controversy.

Tour for Humantiy aims to make the connection: Lessons of past can apply to today, Westland students learn
   Grade 9 and 10 students at Westlane Secondary School were the first in Niagara to witness a mobile presentation at the Friends for the Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies Tour for Humanity. The tour was invited to the school by Westlane’s Me to We Club.


Royal Proclamation to 'kitchen accord;' Canada's history on display in Winnipeg
   The collection of 11 documents, on loan from Library and Archives Canada, includes some of the most important original records in the country's history, spanning The Royal Proclamation of 1763 to more recent Constitution Act of 1982 created on made-in-Manitoba flax paper.

Unravelling the Riel family’s history
   Of all the historic figures in Manitoba, the most convoluted stories surround Louis Riel, the man who steered Manitoba in Confederation.

Genealogy Stories of the Week

Some stories which have passed over this desk this past week -

The Government of Canada has announced that they want young Canadians to be involved in developing a logo for the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017. If you have a creative spirit and would like to make history, this logo design contest is for you!
   The contest is open to Canadian citizens residing in Canada or permanent residents living in Canada, 18 years and older, registered at a Canadian post-secondary institution in December 2014 and/or January 2015.
   You can submit your design online at Click on sections below for more details on the contest and how to enter. The contest will end at 11:59 p.m. EST on January 23, 2015.

The Ontario Genealogical Society (OGS) has announced that Families (their journal) will be delivered to its members electronically, starting with the February 2015 issue.
   They give the following reasons - 
  • Ability to click on any URLs and immediately check out the websites noted
  • No need to find storage space for a paper copy; instead, you will have easy storage on your computer hard drive, in the cloud, or on your mobile device
  • Ability to read Families on your tablet
  • Having the luxury of a backup copy in the Members-Only section of the OGS website
  • Helping OGS to go green
   Members with email addresses will automatically be placed on our list for the new version, while members without email addresses will continue to receive paper copies.
   Members wanting to receive a paper copy of Families must let Marsha Brown, Membership Coordinator, know by Jan. 9, 2015. Contact Marsha at 416-489-0734 or

Library and Archives Canada has the William Lyon Mackenzie King collection and has digitized his personal diary. The full text search offers unparalleled access to the document, one of the most remarkable sources of information on Canadian political history in the first half of the 20th century.
   Their Internet partner,, recently added more digitized microfilms to the site called Héritage , and they have recently released more Digitized Copies of the Canadian Expeditionary Force Personnel Service Files on their site at

The National Institute for Genealogical Studies (NIGS), based in Ontario, is celebrating 15 Years of Online Genealogy Education.
   With hundreds of courses being offered today, it all started with a single course called 'Methodology-Part 1: Getting Started'.
   With hundreds of courses being offered today, they are giving away presents!
   Now's the time to sign-up for those courses you always wanted to take. Go to and sign up today. As a student in the Professional Development Certificate Program (I am halfway through), I can attest that the courses are current and challenging, and are a great test of your genealogy knowledge.

After a week of making calls and hard work, the Quebec Family History Society (QFHS) has their modem working again, and you can go back on the Member's only site once again.
   December 19th was the last day the library was open before the Christmas recess. It will stay closed until Monday, January 5th, 2015.

And talk about Christmas and the holiday season, may I wish each and everyone of you, my loyal readers, the best for the holiday season, and my thanks for making this blog popular and successful.
   As genealogy waits for no man (or woman), I will be working on my research projects this week, and like most good genealogists, I'll be too busy to see Santa drop down my chimney, eat the cookies, drink all the milk (and leave the fridge door open) before I realize he was here and left me something (nice, I hope)!

Reminder: Check the Canadian Week in Review next Monday for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada. It’s the ONLY news blog of its kind in country!

The next post will be on 29 December 2014. 
(These links were accessed 21 December 2014)