Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Ontario's Agricultural Past

The Archives of Ontario has a new travelling exhibit called Ontario's Agricultural Past.

The new exhibit examines how farming in Ontario has transformed the land and created communities, and how food reaches our tables. 

Notice the poster from the Archives of Ontario which was printed in 1869. It says Ontario has land to give away to immigrants from Great Britain, Europe, and the United States!


Check the Canadian Week in Review (CWR) every Monday morning for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada.

If you missed last week’s edition, it is 

It’s the ONLY news blog of its kind in Canada!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Canadian Week in Review 05 October 2015

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

This Week in Canadian History

September 29, 1668 - Captain Zachariah Gillam reaches Rupert River on the ketch Nonsuch with Médart des Groseilliers. 

They built the Charles Fort, make a treaty with the local chief and spend the winter trading fur. 

The financial success of this venture lead to the creation of the Hudson's Bay Company. 

Social Media

(Photos) Taverns and Troublemakers exhibition showcases Ottawa's temperance movement


Nine people invested in Order of Newfoundland and Labrador

In recognition of their outstanding contributions to the province, nine people were invested into the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador. 

Nova Scotia 

Derelict buildings a growing problem in rural Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia's rural municipalities are experiencing an unwelcome crop of derelict buildings.

There's no official count of how many abandoned structures each municipality holds. But the costs of monitoring and demolishing them quickly add up 

Archeology enthusiasts unearth artifacts at Dartmouth park

There was a public archaeological dig at the site of what is believed to be a worker's cottage or bunkhouse from the original construction phase of the Shubenacadie Canal between 1826 and 1831.

More than 300 workers, many from Ireland and Scotland, arrived in 1826 to begin construction. Work on the waterway wouldn't wrap up until 35 years later.

Amherst heritage building unlikely to get reprieve from destruction

A historic Amherst building, built of the region's famous red sand, will be lost to the town if money can't be found to repair it. 

Known as the BMO building — even though the bank moved out in the 1920s — the downtown building on the corner of Victoria and LaPlanche streets was most recently the home of the Amherst Police Department until the building was condemned in the 1990s.


Day in History, Sept. 29, 1928: Flight over Barren Lands the greatest air trip in Canadian history

Clennel (Punch) Dickins, well-known Edmonton bush pilot, was at the controls of the Western Canada Airways plane — the first pilot to fly 6,379 kilometres over the Barren Lands between Hudson Bay and the Mackenzie River basin. 

Canadian news stories this week

October is Women’s History Month

Her Story, Our Story: Celebrating Canadian Women

Since 1992, Canada has celebrated Women's History Month. October has been selected because of the historical significance of the "Persons Case" decision of 1929, a landmark victory in the struggle of Canadian women for equality. The highlight of the month is the celebration of Person's Day on October 18th. The theme for Women’s History Month 2015 is “Her Story, Our Story: Celebrating Canadian Women”.  

This theme highlights the outstanding achievements of women who have shaped the nation in which we live; as pioneers taking the first bold steps into the unknown, as innovators accelerating progress, and as activists at the vanguard of social change. Canada’s history is rich with examples of women who have made a difference in the world and all Canadians can benefit from getting to know their stories.

Some facts you may not know about Canadian women are - 

In 1813, Laura Secord walked 32 kilometres to warn Lieutenant James Fitzgibbon of impending danger of attack by the Americans during the War of 1812.

In 1908, Lucy Maud Montgomery of Prince Edward Island published Anne of Green Gables. It became an instant bestseller, selling more than 19,000 copies in the first five months. It remains one of the bestselling and most beloved books of all time.

During the First World War (1914–1918), more than 2,800 women served with the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps, with the majority serving overseas in hospitals, on board hospital ships, in several theatres of war and in combat zones with field ambulance units.

In 2009, Commander Josée Kurtz became the first woman in Canadian history to assume command of a major warship when she took control of the frigate HMCS Halifax.

You can read more about the Women's History Month at http://www.swc-cfc.gc.ca/commemoration/whm-mhf/educator-educateur-en.html

And that was the week in Canadian news!

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Two databases upgraded at FamilySearch

There are two databases that have been recently updated on the FamilySearch web page -

Family Origins,Quebec, Quebec Federation of Genealogical Societies, 1621-1865 

This is an index of the family origins of French and foreign immigrants who settled in old Quebec from 1621 to 1865. The index includes individual names, gender, birth dates, baptism dates, area where the individual migrated from, parent's names, and marital status

You can search the index at https://familysearch.org/search/collection/2558681

Prince Edward Island Death Card Index, 1721-1905 

This database has also been updated. It is from index and images of index cards. Information comes from various sources, newspapers, cemeteries, churches, etc.


Check the Canadian Week in Review (CWR) every Monday morning for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada.

If you missed last week’s edition, it is 

It’s the ONLY news blog of its kind in Canada!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Three new historical databases updated at Ancestry.ca

The Alberta Newspaper BMD Index, 1889 – 2012, the database which has the birth, marriage and death records of ancestors who lived in Alberta, Canada, have been updated on Ancestry.ca.

You can see the historical records at http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=70598 

They also have updated two more historical records - 

The Montreal, Canada, non-Catholic Burial Index, 1767-1899 or the Index des sépultures non catholiques, Montréal, Canada, 1767 à 1899 has been updated at http://search.ancestry.ca/search/db.aspx?dbid=70766 

The Montreal, Canada, non-Catholic Marriage Index, 1766-1899 or the Index des mariages non catholiques, Montréal, Canada, 1766 à 1899 has been updated at http://search.ancestry.ca/search/db.aspx?dbid=70767

These two databases come from the National Library and Archives of Achives (Bibliothèque et Archives Nationales du Québec) (BanQ).  

Happy Researching!!


Check the Canadian Week in Review (CWR) every Monday morning for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada.

If you missed last week’s edition, it is 

It’s the ONLY news blog of its kind in Canada

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Churches are robbed in our backyard

Word has reached us that another church - l'Église de Saint-Joachim, in the small town of Chute-à-Blondeau, Ontario, about 80 miles southeast from Ottawa - has been robbed.

More than 120 years of archival records were stolen (these records were back to 1887), and $1,000 was taken from the safe. 

Across the river from Hawkesbury, in Grenville, Quebec, the Notre Dame des Sept Douleurs Roman Catholic Church was robbed of $250.00 and there was a robbery of a church in Hawkesbury itself in the summer.

No arrests have been made so far.

I understand that they were there to take the money, but I not understand why they would take the archives – to sell. Maybe?

Let us hope this all stops, soon, and life return to normal.


Check the Canadian Week in Review (CWR) every Monday morning for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada.

If you missed last week’s edition, it is 

It’s the ONLY news blog of its kind in Canada!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

New Canadian Ancestry.ca

Last night, I received notification from the Canadian arm of Ancestry that they would be changing the landing page and adding some features to Ancestry.ca. 

They said that Ancestry.ca "would appear with new storytelling features and a streamlined design, the new Ancestry site will help Canadians move beyond names and dates, enhancing the stories of their ancestors’ lives. 

A few new features include: 

LifeStory, which uses events, sources and relationships you’ve collected in your family tree to create a holistic, time-based narrative of these moments;

Historical Insights will now appear within your ancestor’s life story, giving you context about the events that impacted their lives; 

Facts and Galleries will transform how you view, arrange and share the details of your ancestors’ lives.

As you begin to explore the updated site, please let us know if you have any questions, or need any help navigating the new features". 

Ancestry.com put on this new landing site and the other features about a month ago. It is clear that they are aiming towards the “new customer” (someone who has never used Ancestry before), and are not placating the “seasoned” researcher to find and improve on their research - those that have already found ancestors.

It would be my fervent wish that Ancestry would improve their search algorithms so that it doesn't give me WHITE instead of WAITE, and Halifax, Nova Scotia instead of Halifax, England, or Halifax, Virginia. I have to use the browse feature instead of the search feature.

Pat Richley-Erickson of Mondays with Myrt, a Google+ Hangout on Air, suggested yesterday that
a clearing house of complaints should be set-up so that we can put our frustrations online, instead of not having them answered by the Ancestry people. 

If you are not a member of her genealogy community on Goggle+, you can go to YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_ap4JKxu58 and view it there. 

I will keep you posted on this development.


Check the Canadian Week in Review (CWR) every Monday morning for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada.

If you missed last week’s edition, it is 

It’s the ONLY news blog of its kind in Canada!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Canadian Week in Review (CWR) 28 September 2015

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

This Week in Canadian History

September 28, 1857 - Great Western Railway opened from Galt to Guelph, Ontario. 

The line was taken over by the Grand Trunk Railway in August 1882, and in time, it became a major part of the Canadian National Railway's southern Ontario routes. The majority of the mainlines remain in use to this day.

September 28, 1867 - Toronto officially became the capital of Ontario.

Today, it is the fourth most populated city in North America, after Mexico City, New York, and Los Angeles.

And it is where the headquarters of the Ontario Genealogical Society has been located since the 1980s with the North York Public Library system as their office space.

To learn more, please go to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toronto

Social Media

(Photos) HANTS HISTORY (Sept. 24, 2015 edition)

News Articles


Beothuk history unearthed along Exploits River


Archaeologists have unearthed Beothuk arrowheads and fire pits containing bones, after working over the summer along the banks of the Exploits River. 

Nova Scotia

Liverpool’s decaying history: Perkins House needs six months, unknown amount of money for repairs


When tourists came to town to ask about Perkins House this summer, they were asked to support efforts to shore up the building’s flimsy foundation

Prince Edward Island

P.E.I. student's great project


Geoffrey Paton of Charlottetown discovered that his great-great-great-great-grandfather, Samuel Cunard, who helped establish the British and North American Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, was quite the man.

Prince Edward Island's Bicycle Trail


The island is just the right size for touring--about 168 miles long and no more than 36 miles wide. By driving along the scenic routes of the six enticing day tours outlined in the Visitors Guide, you’ll find that Island history lives on–from the native Mi’kmaq inhabitants to the early settlers from England, Ireland and Scotland. Or visit the regions of Evangeline, Tignish or Rustico to share the lively Acadian culture.


Enterprise along the river: A major meat-packing operation once stood on the shores of the Otonabee River at Little Lake


The best wall decoration in the Trent Valley Archives reading room is a large framed copy of the 1895 Bird's Eye View Map of the Town of Peterborough

THE JOY OF GENEALOGY: What did your ancestors do for a living?


Part of the fun in uncovering family history is discovering what our ancestors did for a living

ANAF: Heritage deserves more attention


The African-Canadian military heritage in Canada is still generally unknown and unwritten.

Many Canadians of all races are totally unaware that African-Canadians served, fought, bled and died on many battlefields for the cause of freedom. The fact that approximately 600 African-Canadian soldiers served in a segregated, non-combatant labour battalion during First World War has been one of the best kept secrets in Canadian military history.


Historic southern Alberta train station, part of museum, damaged by fire


Crews were called in early Friday morning to the old Bassano train station in Beiseker.

New Field of Fame unveiled at McDougall Centre


A new Field of Fame honouring prominent contributions to Calgary was unveiled Thursday at the McDougall Centre with family members present.

Canadian news stories this week

This week saw the intersection between heritage and history in Canada, with a sprinkling of genealogy thrown in for good measure.

A new campaign for the Hudson’s Bay Company

The Toronto agency, Red Urban, has launched a new campaign for the Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC),  which includes the brand’s first-ever broadcast spot.

It's a 60-second spot, which made its debut during the Emmy's, is promoting the HBC History Foundation’s launching of a new series of historical narratives exploring Canadian history.

The HBC is nearly 350 years old. It was established in 1670, was founded as the ‘Company of Adventurers trading into Hudson Bay.’

It's archives are at the Archives of Manitoba at https://www.gov.mb.ca/chc/archives/hbca/

These archives were in London, England until 1970, when they were transferred to Manitoba.

There is an Online Finding Aid at https://www.gov.mb.ca/chc/archives/hbca/resource/index.html

40 years since the dawn of the Cold War

The Military Museums in Calgary opens a unique exhibit on Saturday 26 September 2015, marking the 40th anniversary of the Cold War between Russia and the Allied Counties - of which Canada was one.

The CF-18 Hornet, CF-5 Freedom Fighter, CF-104 Starfighter and the F-86 Sabre are the highlights of the exhibit, but this is not just about aircraft. The exhibit features artifacts and descriptions of a time when the threat of nuclear war was all-too real.

During those tense decades, 37 Canadian airmen were killed in crashes involved the CF-104 alone.

To see the times of the exhibit, go to http://www.themilitarymuseums.ca/

World Rivers Day

Sixty countries around the world took part in World Rivers Day, held on the last Saturday in September.

It was established by Mark Angelo, a native of British Columbia, an active and internationally celebrated river conservationist.

This year is the 35th anniversary of British Columbia Rivers Day, and this year it is especially timely for British Columbia because of the warm, dry weather they had this summer, It caused the rivers to reduce their water flows to low levels and higher water temperatures caused problems for the fish.

Educational Materials, and discover some of the great rivers of this county.

Quebec name changes have been ordered

And finally, after the news erupted this summer about the unacceptable N-word in 11 place names in Quebec, the Quebec Toponymy Commission has ordered name changes.

The commission recognized six place names in the province that include the N-word in English and five that include the word nègre, which in French can mean both Negro and the N-word.

This is a victory for Rachel Zellars, a PhD student at McGill University who started a petition to get the names removed.

For example, some of the places are Niger River, near Sherbrooke, Lac du Nègre and Ruisseau du Nègre in west Quebec, and Rivière du Nègre near Drummondville, Le Buttereau-du-Nègre on Îles-de-la-Madeleine and Lac à Ti-Nègre near Shawinigan.

So for genealogists out there who have ancestors who lived in these areas, please make note of this change which will occur with the names. The new names should be released shortly.

And that was the week in Canadian heritage, history and genealogy news!

Check the Canadian Week in Review (CWR) every Monday morning for the latest in Genealogy, Heritage, and History news in Canada.

If you missed last week’s edition, it is