Wednesday, July 29, 2015

CanadianLibGenie heading on holidays!

I don't know where you all are in the world right now, but it's HOT around here! So, this CanadianLibGenie is heading for some R&R. I just wanted you all to know that regular posts will resume next Wednesday.

Stay cool, hydrated and have a safe and happy holiday weekend if you have the chance to celebrate one this weekend. Don't forget to check what the Civic Holiday is called in your area!

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Encyclopedia of Genealogy: Acadian French-Canadian Name Variations

Surname studies of varying sizes and geographic coverage have become very popular in recent years. One group, The Surname Society, offers a repository for Surname Studies along with multiple resources available freely and to paid members.

In a recent issue of Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter, (Plus Edition) he shared information about the Encyclopedia of Genealogy's article on Acadian French-Canadian Name Variations. Many thanks to Jennie Fairs of The Surname Society for letting members know about this resource!

And now, if you'll all excuse me, I need to go look at the Encyclopedia of Genealogy a bit more thoroughly...

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Monday, July 27, 2015

Libraries and Archives in Toronto, Ontario

The Toronto Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society will be hosting the OGS Conference in 2016. With guest speakers like Judy Russell, The Legal Genealogist, and Genetic Genealogist CeCe Moore already confirmed, it's going to be great!

As the organizers point out, Toronto is home to a number of libraries, archives and other repositories that genealogists will want to investigate while they're here. From the Archives of Ontario to the Presbyterian Church in Canada Archives to the Toronto Public Library or the University of Toronto Libraries, there is bound to be something of interest for almost everyone.

I look forward to seeing you there!

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Friday, July 24, 2015

Multicultural History Society of Ontario

The MHSO describes itself on its website as follows:

Established in 1976, the Multicultural History Society of Ontario collects, preserves, and makes available irreplaceable records of our histories of migration and ethnicity.
Not only do they offer programming and travelling exhibitions on the diverse cultures that make up Ontario, they have an extensive collection within their archives and online finding aids to assist you in your research.

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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Digital Collections Available From McGill University Libraries

Back in 2005, I posted about McGill University Libraries' In Search of Your Canadian Past: The Canadian County Atlas Project. In the interest of full disclosure, I graduated from McGill's MLIS program, and I was very, very proud to be able to point to this resource and say that it was produced by my grad school!

Fast forward 10 years, and the McGill Libraries' Digital Collections have certainly multiplied: Yearbooks, Canadian War Poster Collection, and the Expo '67 Slide Collection, just to name a few.

If you're interested in more McGill yearbooks from their digital collection or those from other Canadian schools, Gail Dever recently had a blog post entitled, Ancestry releases more than 100 years of Canadian yearbook records. The Ancestry collection is the Canada, Selected School Yearbooks, 1908-2010 and, for those of you without Ancestry subscriptions, it is available through Ancestry Library Edition found at many public libraries in Ontario.

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Library and Archives Canada: Loyalist petition Papers

When researching a possible United Empire Loyalist, land petitions are an essential part of that documentation. Randy Seaver on his blog, Genea-Musings, has a very complete description of where to learn more and how to conduct that type of research through LAC's Loyalist Petition Papers.

To learn more about obtaining a certificate of Loyalist ancestry or to help out with other activities, please visit the website of the United Empire Loyalists' Association of Canada.

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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

British Columbia Archives

The BC Archives are located in Victoria, British Columbia just next door to the Royal BC Museum. Luckily, for researchers, they share the same website which puts all information in a one-stop location.

As far as genealogy records go, the Archives offers a search form for indexes to births (1854-1903), marriages (1872-1938), deaths (1872-1993), colonial marriages (1859-1872) and baptisms (1836-1888). A separate search allows you to access their fond descriptions, their library as well as records in formats other than text. Another type of record accessible through the BC Archives are Divorce Orders from before 1983 and Sisters of St. Ann Archives.

Just click on any of the links above to learn more!

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Short post today

I'm a bit under the weather today, but I don't want to miss blogging. Instead of my own post I thought I'd send you over to my friend's blog, Ruth Blair's The Passionate Genealogist, to read her most recent post on Creating a Family Heirloom.  Enjoy and Be Well!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Finally Friday!

I don't know about you, but everyone I've spoken with today is very happy that it's finally Friday! In that vein, here's a short post for today:

For anyone with an interest in Kingston, Ontario, you have to check out Digital Kingston. This database not only includes a number of historic Kingston newspapers from 1810-1900, but also includes digital versions of the local City Directories from 1855-1923.

Don't forget to add Digital Kingston to your research list!

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Québec City Genealogy & Local History Research

Québec City is a beautiful place that I hope everyone gets a chance to visit at one point in their lifetime. Here are a collection of links that might prove useful to you if you are doing family or local history research for this wonderful place. Be aware! Some of these links may only be available in French. You can have them translated using Google Translate.
There are many, many more resources that pertain to the province of Quebec, so be sure to explore those as well as the ones above!

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Naval Marine Archives and Canadian Society of Marine Artists in Picton, Ontario

The Victory is home to the Naval Marine Archives and Canadian Society of Marine Artists in beautiful Picton, Ontario. They were formerly the Archives and Collections Society.

The facilities are open to all researchers, though there are a few advantages to becoming a member if this type of research falls within your family history: 1. You support a federally incorporated charity and 2. Members not able to visit the archives in person will receive some research assistance for free.

What will you find? Everything from books on naval marine topics and related local information, ships and shipping, yachts and yachting  as well as access to Members' Pages (with paid membership.) An overall description of their holdings is available on their site, and be sure to check their online catalogue for more!

Photos © E. Cole and used with permission

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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Learning Opportunities Galore! Online Webinars from

Genealogists from's US and Canada's Research team offer a number of online webinars for free on a regular basis. All you need is a computer with audio and internet access.

Some of the content they have listed on their site is applicable to Canadian research like Beginning LDS Research, Planning a Research Trip and Immigration Into the United States, just over the summer months alone.

Looking for another topic entirely? FamilySearch maintains quite an archive in its Learning Center that is available whenever you need it!

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Monday, July 13, 2015

Making Memories Monday: A Day In the Life of Oakville

You're cordially invited to help make memories as part of our upcoming project: A Day In the Life of Oakville. Here are the details:

Oakville Public Library is creating "A Day In the Life of Oakville" digital photo exhibit and we need your help; we want to see Oakville from your perspective. We’ll be collecting photos taken on Tuesday, July 28th, 2015 and preserving them in a digital exhibit for future generations. Using your smartphone or digital camera, take a snapshot of a moment during your day on July 28th and help us build a community archive. This is your chance to contribute to Oakville heritage and show us Oakville the way YOU see it!

The rest of the information including the link to submit your photograph online between July 28 and August 5 is on our website.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Funeral Card Friday

I've come across a number of mentions of collections of databases of Funeral Cards lately. One is the Drouin Collection, though their funeral (obituary) cards are part of their subscription database. To learn more about how to use them, and their collection as a whole, be sure to visit their pathfinder. Ancestors At Rest has an online index available of a large collection of funeral cards as well.

The collection about which I'm most excited is a small collection that has recently been added to the Oakville Images database at the Oakville Public Library. I've been cleaning out the unused cabinets in the Oakville Room at the Central Branch and came across an envelope filled with just under a dozen funeral cards for the area dating back to the early 1900s. Feel free to take a look!

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Thursday, July 09, 2015

Quick post about learning through the Ontario Genealogical Society

The OGS has two easy ways to learn:

1. The OGS eWeekly: Sign up online for free. No need to be a member.
2. There is a monthly online OGS webinar, the first Tuesday of every month. The variety is great: Future Proofing your family history reasearch with Thomas MacEntee was this past Tuesday, and August 4 is on Canadian Copyright for Family Historians with Kathryn Lake Hogan. Members have access to archived webinars in the members-only area of the site.


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Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Index to French Canadian Revolutionary War Patriots

The Ross Flag
I'm fascinated when celebrities on Who Do You Think You Are discover that they are entitled to apply to be Sons or Daughters of the American Revolution. What I didn't realize until I went to do my research for this blog post that, as The Canadian Encyclopedia describes in its American Revolution article that Canada was also invaded during the war:
In 1775 at the start of the American Revolution, rebel forces invaded Canada, occupying Montréal and attacking the town of Québec.
If you read the whole article, you'll see that those seeking America's Independence from Britain had sympathizers in Canada, but the rebel forces were defeated. Quite a difference from those wanting to remain loyal to Britain and moved to Canada as Loyalists!

I've had this link to the online Index to French Canadian Revolutionary War Patriots bookmarked for so long, I don't remember where I learned about it! What I do know is that Debbie Duay of Fort Lauderdale, Florida is to be commended for all of her hard work to compile this list. Be sure to check to see if any of your French Canadian family members of the late 1700s were Revolutionary War Patriots!

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Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Oakville Names August Civic Holiday Emancipation Day

I was so excited to read the Oakville Beaver article that announced that the August Civic Holiday will now be known as Emancipation Day. You'll want to read the article to truly appreciate the significance of the name and the recognition of the role Oakville played in the Underground Railroad.

I went looking to see how this naming was possible since a friend had once told me that the Ontario Civic Holiday is called Simcoe Day. It is Simcoe Day in Toronto, but if you read the article in The Canadian Encyclopedia, you'll see that many Ontario municipalities have named it to be locally significant to them while other provinces use different names too. I did dig a little further and found an article on CBC's site that indicates that "the entire province of Ontario has dedicated the civic holiday to Emancipation Day since 2008."

If you can, be sure to check out the activities in your area!

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Monday, July 06, 2015

Mastering It Monday

I'm all about taking advantage of learning opportunities, especially when they're high quality and affordable. One such way to "Master It" is the upcoming 6th Annual One World One Family Conference which takes place on Saturday, August 22nd at the Brampton Ontario Stake Centre of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Their address is 10062 Bramalea Road, Brampton ON, and a full day of sessions is only $25, including a box lunch!

Speakers include Lesley Anderson, Glenn Wright, Dorothy Kew, Fran Murphy and Steve Fulton, just to name a few options available over the course of the day.

Be sure to register soon!

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Friday, July 03, 2015

Happy 407th Anniversary, Québec City!

Photo © David Hook 2008
An anniversary as significant as this one deserves a post on the proper day! According to The Canadian Encyclopedia:
"I arrived there on the 3rd of July," wrote Samuel de Champlain in 1608, "when I searched for a place suitable for our settlement, but I could find none more convenient or better situated than the point of Quebec."
Do you think that he had any clue that this place would become so significant? While it's not the oldest city in Canada (that honour falls to St. John's, NL) it became the political seat of what would become the province of Québec. It was also one of the places where many new immigrants arrived in Canada. Be sure to check out the Library and Archives Canada's database, Passenger Lists for the Port of Quebec City, 1865-1900.

Joyeux Anniversaire, Québec!

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Slavery Records available online and my 200th post!

FamilySearch and other groups have been working together to digitize and make records of freed African American slaves available online. These records are from the US Freedmen's Bureau and cover from just after the beginning of the U.S. Civil War until approximately 1878. FamilySearch and its partners also hope to have everything indexed for easy access by 2016.

It's time to celebrate my 200th post! Thanks so much for your continued support, Everyone!

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Thursday, July 02, 2015

Digital Irish Famine Archive Available Online

The Irish Famine Archive is a tremendous resource for those with Irish Canadian roots. It contains eyewitness accounts of those who migrated from Ireland to Canada by those who cared for them, namely the Grey Nuns (Sisters of Charity) and the Sisters of Providence within the fever sheds of Montreal. Other accounts are included by Irish orphans who were adopted by French Canadian families in the area. While the time-frame is quite small, 1847-1848, the amount of detail gives us a tremendous amount of insight into the true conditions of the time.

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Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Happy Canada Day!

Happy 148th Birthday, Canada! Have a safe and happy holiday, Everyone!


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Magna Carta and Charter of the Forest in Canada

What is the Magna Carta? It's an 800 year old document that, as one journalist wrote:
is one of the most important documents in history as it established the principle that everyone is subject to the law, even the king, and guarantees the rights of individuals, the right to justice and the right to a fair trial.
One of Durham Cathedral's copies of the Magna Carta and the related Charter of the Forest, is currently on tour here in Canada. They are currently on display in Ottawa at the Canadian Museum of History and will then travel to Winnipeg, Toronto and Edmonton.

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Learning Opportunity: East European Genealogical Society, Winnipeg, MB

The East European Genealogical Society of Winnipeg, Manitoba will be holding their Seminar 2015 on August 1 and registration is currently open. The EEGS covers the current countries of Austria, Belarus, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, and Ukraine, not to mention multiple religions and historical areas. If you have Eastern European ancestry and you can get to Winnipeg for this day-long learning experience, don't miss out!

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Monday, June 29, 2015

Marriage (Bond) Monday

Protestant marriages in Upper Canada (Ontario) and Lower Canada (Quebec) can be more difficult to research than Catholic marriages, particularly before the introduction of civil registration in many provinces. Here's what Marriage Bonds are according to the database of these records made available by Library and Archives Canada:
Marriage bonds were prepared only for Protestant marriages by licence. The groom was required to enter into a bond with one or two people (sureties) who knew him and who were prepared to guarantee to the Crown that there was no legal impediment to the marriage. After obtaining the bond, a licence was issued and the marriage took place a few days later.

The records available for Ontario cover the period from 1803 and 1865 while Quebec records range from 1779 and 1858, though they are much fewer in number: just around 7900 for Ontario, and just over 2900 for Quebec.

Be sure to check out this database if you have potential Protestant marriages in your family tree from this area and timeframe that you haven't been able to find elsewhere.

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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Bonne fête nationale or Happy Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day!

For those of you in Quebec enjoying today's holiday, I hope you have good weather to accompany your day!

In honour of Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day (as my calendar tells me it is) I thought I'd bring to your attention Qui êtes-vous? or Who Do You Think You Are? on Radio-Canada (CBC in French.) They have completed two seasons and the third is now in production. Genealogy Rockstar 2014 Kirsty Gray from England is involved with one episode, though she's giving nothing else away about the celebrity!

Interested in past episodes? More information about each episode is available online on the SRC website.

À la prochaine!

P.S. Courtesy of a friend of mine from the library world of Northern Ontario:
"400 ans de présence française en Ontario : Prêts pour la nouvelle année!"

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Friday, June 05, 2015

Learning opportunity: Glengarry Pioneer Museum's Celtic Fair July 19th

Glengarry Pioneer Museum will present their first Celtic Fair on Sunday, July 19 from 11am to 5pm. There are admission fees (cash only) which will give you access to entertainment and multiple displays by groups like Ontario East British Home Children, Glengarry County Archives and Centre culturel Les trois p’tits point where you can learn about all things Celtic! There is even a Whiskey Tasting, so be sure to preregister so you don't miss out!

As the Museum's website explains, "This group of people traditionally included Irish, Scottish Gaelic, Welsh, Breton, Manx, Cornish, and other Indo-European peoples." Whether or not you have Celts in your family tree, it's sure to be a great time! Be sure to check it out!

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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Quebec Family History Society Presents Roots 2015 June 19-21

The Quebec Family History Society will once again be presenting Roots 2015, an international conference on family history in Quebec. The conference will be held at McGill University in Montreal, and presenters will include Gary Schroder, President, Quebec Family History Society, Glenn Wright, Author and Lecturer, and Edward Zapletal, Publisher of multiple family history magazines. Be sure to register soon!

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Saturday, May 30, 2015

Conference Announcement: British Isles Family History Society ofGreater Ottawa 18-20 September 2015

BIFHSGO will be holding their Family History Conference from 18-20 September 2015 at Ben Franklin Place on Centrepointe Drive in Ottawa. Their three areas of focus will be Scottish Family History, Photographs in Genealogy and Technology for Genealogists with expert genealogy lecturers like Thomas MacEntee, Maureen Taylor and Chris Paton just to name a few. All details including registration information is available on their website. Happy Learning!

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Happy 10th Blogoversary to me!

I can't believe I almost missed the 10th anniversary of my blog! My first post was 27 May 2005 and was all about OGS Seminar 2005, the predecessor of the #OGS #Conference.

Cue the birthday cake & candles!

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OGS Barrie 2015: Jane MacNamara & Ontario Indexes

I'm currently in a session with Jane MacNamara at #OGSBarrie2015 who is running through 25+ indexes to consider using if you have Ontario ancestors. She makes a very good point to be sure to go back and look at TONI from the Ontario Genealogical Society. There are additions made to it regularly, so be sure to check it out for your Ontario ancestors every six months or so! More available at her website.

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OGS Barrie Conference Panel: 2015 - Tracks Through Time

Tracks Through Time is the theme for our plenary session on Day 2 of #OGSBarrie2015. It's a panel with Richard M. Doherty, Kirsty Gray, Dave Obee and Dr. Maurice Gleeson and moderator Thomas MacEntee. Such expertise!

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Friday, May 29, 2015

Slums of Pointe St. Charles: Library & Archives Canada

Library and Archives Canada has posted an entry on its blog about the slums of Pointe St. Charles, a neighbourhood of Montreal. Be sure to check it out!

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What Was There: Put history in its place

I learned about the site, WhatWasThere at a session at #OGSBarrie2015 today. It's very cool in that people can post older photos to the site and tie them into Google Maps so that you can see what the area looked like in the past compared to recently. It's very cool and I can see it becoming a site where I can get lost for hours!

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Want to be more organized with your genealogy research?

Thomas MacEntee is presenting a session at #OGSBarrie2015 today on "Managing the Genealogy Data Monster." The first heading on his handout is most telling: "Overwhelming Data and Genealogy - Work Smarter Not Harder." If you get a chance to check out this session elsewhere, I highly recommend it! His handout is once again available for duplication in society newsletters, so drop him an email at if you're interested!

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Google for Genealogists with Thomas MacEntee

I'm attending my first OGS conference in a really long time, and I thought it was a great opportunity to restart my blog. I'm in a session, Google for Genealogists, with blogger extraordinaire Thomas MacEntee! His handout is quite extensive, and available to be used as a newsletter article for your local genealogical society. Interested? Contact him at #OGSBarrie2015

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Sunday, April 06, 2014

Something fun: The Family Tree Rhapsody and Proof that YouTube Is For Genealogists Too!

My hubbie shared a very cute YouTube video with me called Family Tree Rhapsody. You must check it out and be sure your sound is on and turned up.

What struck me is that YouTube is also a great place for learning, even for the Family Historian! In the YouTube sidebar alone were several videos on a variety of topics, including an hour long session by Kyle J. Betit for titled "Tracing Your Irish Ancestors Back to the Homeland"  or "Researching Newspapers for Genealogy for Free" by Kenneth R. Marks, though his focus is on American newspapers. Do not despair! Library and Archives Canada is also there with their own channel and the search box at the top of the main site will let you search for videos on all different types of genealogical research.

Have fun!

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Toronto Public Library Local History and Genealogy Blog

Toronto Public Library has a great blog on local history and genealogical resources. I appreciate the depth and detail their staff includes in the posts. By the end of the entry, you know not only where to turn, but in the case of subscription databases like Toronto Star and the Globe and Mail, you'll also be given tips on how to use the Advanced Search features, how to save and print.

Information is not limited to subscription resources, but you're also given details on how to do research on passenger lists and Home Children, how to get started with French Canadian & Acadian Genealogy, or learn more about historical Toronto and area landmarks. Be sure to have a look!

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Sunday, March 23, 2014

Ask Granny: Create a Genealogical Gift For Your Family Free on April 2 at the Oakville Public Library

On Wednesday, April 2, the Oakville Public Library will be hosting a FREE program for anyone interested in preserving their family legacy by creating a simple family tree to gift to your family.

This class will take you through the process of recording information about your family members, a gift that can be passed down to children and grandchildren who will never regret not “Asking Granny” about their ancestors.  Participants will leave the class with a folder containing a family worksheet.  This is a pencil and paper class: no computer skills necessary! This class welcomes present and future Grannies and Grandpas, and is limited to 12 participants, so don't delay!

When: Wednesday, April 2, 2:00pm-3:00pm

Where: Woodside Branch, 1274 Rebecca St., Oakville

To register for this FREE session, please visit for more details or contact Elise, Local Collections Librarian, at or call 905-815-2042 ext. 5037.

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