Over the past number of years, Elgin County Archives has been digitizing the Tweedsmuir Histories of Elgin County.
When they first started at the Archives, there were 27 Tweedsmuir History volumes containing about 5000 pages. As they continued, the number of volumes increased to 50, covering over 7000 pages.
The people of the individual Women’s Institutes became the “unofficial archivists” of Ontario counties and districts. They constructed “scrapbooks”, and they present information about oral histories and photographs.
Looking at these books, there are “Family Trees”, “Pioneer Histories”, the history of schools, churches, businesses, and individual family histories. I don’t think that there are any such histories in the rest of Canada that can come up to this level of history written by ordinary people. It is, as their website says, “an outstanding resource on the history of rural Ontario”.
The counties covered are - Aldborough, Dunwich, Southwold, Yarmouth, Malahide, South Dorchester, Bayham, East Elgin, and West Elgin.
You can read them at www.elgin.ca/ElginCounty/CulturalServices/Archives/tweedsmuir/index.html.
There is also a Photo Gallery at www.elgin.ca/ElginCounty/CulturalServices/Archives/tweedsmuir/aldborough2.html
It was announced early in November that the Elgin County Archives received a donation of $6,000 from the Elgin County Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society. This donation will help complete the project, which is expected to be completed between January and May of 2012.
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