Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Ottawa Genealogist

The Spring/Summer edition of The Ottawa Genealogist came in the mail today, and it has some interesting articles in it for those who have ancestors in the Ottawa Valley area.

The "Ottawa Ladies College and the 1961 Address Book" by Ken Godfrey gives a brief history of the Ladies College that was established in 1869, and the address book which was made as a yearbook for Rose Gammons around 1904. There are places for 50 names and addresses in the book. A typical name/address is "Fern Kerr - Farraus (?) Point, Ontario. Be sure and write."

Another article is from Lynn Mathison entitled, "Letter Written 1916 by Military Bandsman: Describing Arnprior, Carleton Place, and Pakerham".

Her grandfather - Jack Cookson - described the three settlements as he travelled the countryside during WW I as a member of a military band.

Two smaller articles are also in the issue, and they are a description of "The Township Papers - Osgoode Township" by Guylaine Pétrin, and "Ontario Vital Statistics 1869" by Diane Walker Burnett in which she reprints an article found in the Toronto Globe (1869) which talks about the problem encountered in researching the BMDs.

If you wish further information, please contact the Branch at, or the editor at

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Call For Speakers


Jusr received this press release from the Toronto Branch of the OGS -

"Saturday, November 5, 2011
North York Central Library Auditorium
5120 Yonge Street, Toronto

The Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch and the Canadiana Department of the North York Central Library will be co-hosting a one-day workshop for family historians with English ancestors.

This workshop was originally planned to feature popular speakers, John D. Reid and Lesley Anderson from Ottawa. John and Lesley developed a very interesting plenary-style program for us and we were all set to announce it when it became necessary to reschedule the event. In so doing we have acquired a larger venue, making it possible to expand upon John and Lesley’s program.

You are invited to submit proposals for lectures on any aspect of English genealogical or social history research. Workshop attendees will be most interested in lectures emphasizing sources and research techniques that might prove useful in their own research.

Each session will be one hour long, including five or ten minutes for questions. Presentations should be illustrated—we can provide a computer projector or an overhead projector. Speakers will also be expected to provide a handout of supporting material (up to four pages) which we will photocopy for all registrants.

Speakers will be paid an honorarium of $100 per lecture, plus $25 to cover incidental expenses.

Please submit your lecture proposals by e-mail. Before you start developing your proposals we recommend that you request a copy of the outline of John and Lesley’s program so that you can avoid duplicating their presentations. Please keep your proposals brief and informal, at this point. (We may ask for more details later.) Be sure to include your mailing address, phone number, and a brief bio.


For more information about the Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch, please see: CALL FOR SPEAKERS.

To submit proposals or ask a question about the event, please contact the Education Committee, c/o Chair, Diana Thomson at".

Monday, April 18, 2011

Destination Canada

One of the best books published in 2010—and which I use as my "go to" book on immigration, citizenship, and naturalization—is Dave Obee's book, Destination Canada: A Genealogical Guide to Immigration Records.

It's made up of 15 chapters -

Chapter 1 - The immigration experience
Chapter 2 - Four centuries of immigration
Chapter 3 - A timetable of migration to Canada
Chapter 4 - The key resources
Chapter 5 - The early years
Chapter 6 - Atlantic ports 1865-1935
Chapter 7 - Pacific ports 1858-1935
Chapter 8 - Through the United States
Chapter 9 - Arrivals since 1935
Chapter 10 - Outbound records
Chapter 11 - Immigration Branch (RG76)
Chapter 12 - Naturalization and citizenship
Chapter 13 - Just passing through?
Chapter 14 - Migration museums
Chapter 15 - Additional sources

I have found the book to be inclusive of all of the records, and where they can be found. There are very helpful maps which explain where the people have come from, and where they were going. And there is a very good chapter on migration museums around the world.

For any questions that I am asked about immigration, I always include Obee's book in my searching for the answer because I want to make sure that I am aware of all of the facts surrounding immigration to Canada.

For example, a question recently arose concerning immigration to Canada from Britain in 1927 - Is a passenger list the same as Immigration Records? Where did this person land? What port did he leave from in England? How did he get from the port to Central Canada?

By reading this book, and looking at the records at the Library and Archives Canada (LAC), as well as the records at, I was able to answer these questions.

To order a book, visit Dave's website at

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The British Columbia Genealogical Society is 40 Years Old!

Happy birthday, BCGS! Congratulations to the Society, and to its President, M. Diane Rogers, and members, for this landmark anniversary. Here's to many more!

The March edition of their newsletter, The British Columbia Genealogist, is a hefty one (it's 50 pages long), with articles including "Documents Reunited With A Family - Bridges, Rauly, Slidders, Stenhouse, Stevens', "Vancouver, BC Post Office War Memorial Plaque", and "BC Roll of Honour, World War I - From The Gold Stripe".

The article, "Impressive Ceremonies Mark Unveiling of Two Langley War Memorials' - Headline from The British Columbian - Monday September 13, 1920", also gives a brief bio of 41 men whose names are on the Landley Memorial from the First World War -

Eugene Lawrence Allard, Edward Weldon Berry, William Elton Berry, Sidney Boundy, Hew McKenzie Bradshaw, T. Brand, Henry (Harry) Brawn, Carleton Hust Brown, Brian Harper Butler, John (Jack) Bertram Carvolth, G. H. Davis, Valentine Davies (Davis), Frank Wesley Glover, Marcelle Gueho, John Crowell Henderson, Donald Howell, Demster Wishart Howes, Hector John Roderick Jackson, Arthur Thomas Johnston, William Henry (Hy) Johnston, Noel Wilfred Kendall, William Lee, James McKay, Gordon Alexander McDonald, James McDonald, Alexander McIntyre, Francis Hubert Read, Frederick Orlando Roberts, David Robertson, George Edward Sellers, Robert Hazlette (Hazie) Simonds, Harry Leslie Swain, George Henry Topham, John Bertram Topping, Alfred William Trattle, Stanley Tyres, George Lewis Warners, Harold Milton White, William Arthur Wilson, Capon Victor Montague (Monty) Wix, and Jesse Wright.

Other interesting columns are "Queries", a "List of Presidents from 1971 to 2011", "Yearbooks & Annuals", "Publications List", and "New Acquisitions at the Walter Draycott Library".

For information on the Society, please go to, or email them at

Saturday, April 16, 2011 Updates

Leland Meitzler, a friend on mine for many years, has just put on the latest Canadian update of on his site

I took a minute to check it out, and although it had many of the records already at, I was able to find a new record for Catherine Barclay Rockwell, born 02 March, 1876 at Cornwallis, Kings, Nova Scotia. Her father's name was given as Rupert Rockwell, and her mother's name was given as Isabell Barclay, the daughter of Andrew Barclay, of Shelburne, Nova Scotia - an ancestor of mine.

The source information was given as Indexing Project (Batch) Number: C53461-1, System Origin: Nova_Scotia-ODM, and the Source Film Number:1298810.

Not long after her birth, the whole family moved out to California, where they joined Isabell's sister, Annie Louisa Haley, at Newark, Almeda County.

Friday, April 15, 2011

War of 1812 Re-enactment - Help Wanted

You can take part in the Celebrate Barrie Festival on June 4th at the 19th Century Heritage Village in Barrie, Ontario by being re-enactors, artisans, entertainers, historical displays, etc. This is a paid event.

We are once again looking for re-enactors to partake in this one day event at the waterfront in downtown Barrie, and are specifically looking for the following:

– British & American Military Units, Individuals & Encampments
– Fife and Drum Groups
– Period Demonstrators, Artisans, Entertainers and Merchants
– Native & Voyageur Units, Individuals & Encampments
– Artillery Crews and Cannons/Artillery Encampments
– Long Boat Crews and Boats with Cannons/Naval Encampments

If you have a special unique 19th century talent not listed above, we would also like to hear from you!!!

This is a paid event for all participants, and you will be compensated for attending and providing wholesome education and public orientated programming. A reminder that this event is a little different from normal re-enactments, as all participants are being compensated for attending, and during education and public hours, you are required to cater and interact with the public. First person interpretations and historical portrayals are stressed and encouraged as much as possible.

If you are available to attend the event, please submit a proposal with the following information from you or your unit/group:

1. Name, Address, Postal Code, Phone Number and E-mail address
2. A description of what you have to offer in regards to talent, demonstrations, exhibits, entertainment, encampments, etc.
3. Any promotional materials, pictures, website addresses, flyers, DVD, CD, etc. promoting yourself or your group
4. How many performances, interpretations, and presentations you would
perform, if applicable.
5. How much it would cost for participating in this one day event.
6. Please submit your proposals to David J. Brunelle (below):

The Festival Committee will be making decisions on an ongoing basis as to which proposals we will be accepting for the event.

We look forward to receiving everyone's proposals. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me, David J. Brunelle, Project Director, at

You can also go to the website at

Ghost Towns of Canada

Fred Dittmar, of Diggin' Deep Genealogy Research Service in Norman, Oklahoma, is the List Administrator for the Ghost Towns of Canada and the US mailing list at RootsWeb. You can contact him at for questions about the list.

Fred says that he started "12 Rootsweb mail lists late last year. There is one for each Province and Territory in Canada".

He explained that (as the site itself says) that 'This list is for the study and researching of town names, residents, history and locations of abandoned ghost towns, camps or posts that your ancestors lived in, passed through or you have a genealogical interest in, in the Province of British Columbia, the Province of Alberta etc."

Fred adds that "The mail lists are only as good as the people who post and talk with each other. That's my motto: Post a lot, talk a lot, have fun, be nice and help each other but don't forget I have a size 13 shoe. It works……lol Thanks again Fred".

You can reach the list at: and search "ghost towns".