Monday, 12 December 2016

North Tipperary Irish Emigrants to Upper Canada 1817-1819

Emigration research is fascinating and there can be pockets of information where you least expect it. Initially, I was looking for pre-1900 Ontario genealogy on Google Books when this particular book led me on a segway journey.

Google books: Preview only: Irish Migrants in the Canadas : a new approach by Bruce S. Elliott 1987 9780773569928 rev.2004

In the Forward, Donald Akenson, FRSC, Queen's University, noted that Elliott traced 775 families, and 'traced with precision the life paths of hundreds of individual migrants, pinpointing their place of origin in the Old World and tracing with equal precision their life course in the New'.

The Appendices are quite informative as they provide detail around a list of passengers from the Camperdown which arrived in Quebec in 1818.  These are represented in petitions, to noted persons associated with their passage fares or concerns upon arrival. There is also a reference to the New Swiftsure, a steamboat (owners: Molson's St. Lawrence steamboats, see p.271) which traveled to Montreal in September 1819. Some passenger names are in Appendix C - listed below. Also see note below about the Molson's database on Ancestry. Thanks to Lorine McGinnis Schulze for the reminder that The Ships List provides a comprehensive transcription of the Molson steamboats in addition to many more resources for passenger lists!

Family names CHARLES, HOWARD, PYE were highlighted, however, more family names are found later in the Appendices (noted below).  The families of John PYE (c1779-1837) and William HOWARD (c1790-1871) married Sarah GOULDING of Moneygall, probably a sister of Mary (GOULDING) PYE. The PYE and HOWARD families are buried at Cornwall, PEI. The author had a segway moment himself, as he mentioned that Lucy Maud Montgomery may have used John Pye's (c1779-1837) surname for one of her characters in Anne of Green Gables.

Although this e-book has limited view-ability, there are two distinct sections: the epilogue and the appendices.

The Epilogue, while an update to the 1987 version, this is a summary of the research that Elliott undertook and gives good examples of resources.Only 2 pages of Chapter 1 notes are available in the preview but gives a particularly rich list of resources. For example, Sarah out of Limerick which arrived in Charlottetown 25 July 1817 with 18 passengers. ref79.chp1

Appendices

Appendix A: A list of the Talbot Party, 1818 [revised from a 1969 MA Thesis Daniel J. Brock "Richard Talbot, The Tipperary Irish, and the Formative Years of London Township, 1818-1826"]. Also reference to E.A. Talbot, Five Years' Residence in the Canadas (London 1824). 
National Archives (Library and Archives Canada) CO 384/3

Appendix B: Birch Petition, 1819 National Archives CO 384/4 - 73 settlers - a petition to Right Hon. Earl Bathurst. provides a list of people who desired to travel with Robert Birch to Upper Canada

Appendix C: Boyd-Baskerville Petition 1819 National Archives CO 384/4 - 60 settlers- a petition to Right Hon. Earl Bathurst, John Baskerville and Robert Boyd

Appendix D: [University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies Library, Archives & Manuscripts, Methodist Missionary Society, Mss, Box 74, 29 June 1819, published with permission of the World Church Office, formerly the Methodist Church Overseas Divison.]

Camperdown Limerick June 20th 1819
Names of Passengers: ACRES, ARDEL, BIRTCH, CASWELL, CORBETT, CRUESS, CUNNINGHAM, DAVIS, GOULDING, HOBBS, KEARNEY, KENT, RITCHAN, ROBINSON, RUCKLE, SHEPPERD, SIFTON, SMELTZER, SWITZER, TUKER, WALLIS, WHITTEN

Appendix E: Camperdown Passengers aboard the New Swiftsure Steamboat for Montreal, September 1819 Molson Fonds National Archives of Canada MG 28, III,

Ancestry: St. Lawrence Steamboat Company Passenger Lists, 1819-1838
Original data: St. Lawrence Steamboat Company Passenger Lists. Molson Coors Canada, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Originals are in Rare Books and Special Collections, McGill University Library, Montreal, Quebec.
       About Canada, St. Lawrence Steamboat Company Passenger Lists, 1819-1838
Following the successful launch of his Canadian brewing company in the 1780s, John Molson and his sons expanded into the shipping industry with the St. Lawrence Steamboat Company, which transported passengers and freight along the St. Lawrence River between Montreal and Québec. This collection includes passenger and freight lists from trips between 1819 and 1835.

Other resources mentioned in the book:

Elliott: 1841-69 Huron County Returns p.383

Dan Walker published 3 vols. pre-1858 non-conformist marriages Upper Canada/Canada West distributed by Global Genealogy Supply p.272

John Molson's St. Lawrence steamboats - reference found on p. 361 : Molson Fonds at Library and Archives Canada Microfilm M8272 to M8287.

Another Reference - State Aided Emigration from Ireland to Canada in the 1880s by Gerard Moran. <accessed on JSTOR>

If an enthusiastic Irish genealogy researcher is able to find a copy of this book 
and would like to send updates or additional content, it would be great to hear from you!

Friday, 2 December 2016

Regina SK Henderson's Directories 1908-1965

In September of this year, the Regina Public Library's Prairie History Room reported that they are partnering with the University of Alberta to digitize their Henderson's Directories from 1908-1965.

REGINA HENDERSON DIGITIZATION PROJECT

© Penny Allen
Although they have sent the majority off to Alberta for digitizing, they have duplicates of some physical copies for you to browse through.
For more information, Email: phr@reginalibrary.ca

I contacted the University of Alberta to find out more information about the project and they are not certain of a completion date for this project as they are currently exploring ways to upgrade the 'infrastructure' that these images are stored on.

This is an invaluable resource, especially for those search for 'living relatives' which can often be a struggle.

Q: What is a directory?
A: Similar to a printed phone book. (Those of us doing genealogy for a while will remember using them to look up phone numbers of friends, family or even tradespeople.)

Q: What type of information can I find in it?
A:  Residential addresses, Occupations, Business addresses, Trade directory, Advertisements. This information was gathered by employees of the publisher: namely Henderson's Directories and were often local citizens themselves so you could be assured of accurate information.

The UofA Digital Initiatives department is responsible for a number of projects, listed here.

CIHM Collection - Canadian Institute for Historical Microreproductions - images of early Canadiana
ERA: Education & Research Archive - UofA institution repository
ERA Audio + Video [BETA] - A multimedia repository and streaming service
Dataverse - researchers data repository
Magee Photographic Collection - early photos of Blackfeet Nation
Peel's Prairie Provinces - excellent digitized collection esp. local community history books - includes Henderson Directories
Sir Sam Steel collection - Mountie (RCMP and RNWMP) collection
University of Alberta Centenary Collection - digitized material relating to a century of the UofA
University of Alberta Internet Archive Collection - UofA contributions to the Internet Archive

It should also be mentioned that Saskatoon directories (1908-2000?) Saskatchewan, are on the Peel's Prairie Provinces (UofA) website.

Friday, 25 November 2016

Yukon Family History & Museums



Did your ancestor attempt to find their fortune in the 'Gold Rush'? Were they involved in the 'support' of the gold miners', ie: proprietors, owners of businesses?
Wikimedia
Commons
Perhaps you will find some hidden 'Nuggets' in the resources below. 

Yukon Genealogy is a page that is supported by staff of the Yukon Archives.
Historic Yukon & Alaska Proprietors and Managers - Index

Yukon Archives - they have built a new storage vault to help store their expanding collection.  Contact:  yukon.archives@gov.yk.ca

Family Histories / Biographies (found on the public library pages)
- The Carmack family genealogy / by Charles W. Peckham, Sr.
- Jijuu : who are my grandparents? Where are they from? : our people, our names : a genealogy/history of the Teetl'it Gwich'in of Fort McPherson.
- Keys Family genealogy
- From Norway to the Klondike : the adventurous and independent life of Georgine B. Sonsteby : biography, genealogy, notes, and compilation of writings of Georgine B. Sonsteby / by Kathy A. Lewis.

Yukon Museums Guide - this link lands on the Binet House museum's page, but the links on the right list the other museums and archives in the Yukon.

Museums and Archives:
Binet House
Copperbelt Railway & Mining Museum
Dawson City Museum
George Johnston Museum
Keno Mining Museum
Kluane Museum of Natural History
MacBride Museum of Yukon History
Old Log Church Museum  @oldlogchurch  Yukon's Spirited History
Yukon Archives
Yukon Transportation Museum

Most of these museums are closed over the summer, however, you may be able to send an enquiry to the Yukon Archives to ask for help in your search.
The Yukon Historical & Museums Association

Dave Obee has a good page with links to Yukon Newspapers, census and genealogy pages for the Yukon. 

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Canada @ WDYTYA Live!

As Canada celebrates 150 years in 2017, this is an opportune time for Canadian Genealogy to be promoted at Who Do You Think You Are Live! an intense 3 day Genealogy show in Birmingham, England.

For many years, the Who Do You Think You Are Live! (WDYTYA) show has represented all parts of the United Kingdom. Last year, American Ancestors, from the United States, attended and were extremely busy all 3 days. From the Who Do You Think You Are Live! website, American Ancestors are listed as an exhibitor for 2017. Over 13,000 people walked through the doors who were very excited to find information about their ancestors. To my knowledge, although Canadians have been invited as speakers, there is as of yet no single representation by or of Canadian genealogists or societies.
My proposal is to represent Canadian Genealogy and 
my country at this unique event.
This is a prime promotional opportunity for your 
organization, not to be missed!

WDYTYA 2016
Who Am I?
I have attended the WDYTYA show for approximately 5 years in the capacity of an 'Ask the Expert' - volunteering for the Society of Genealogists. First and foremost, I am a Canadian, an experienced genealogist and a professional working in the heritage sector in the U.K. 

Whenever I have the opportunity, I support and recommend organizations that have anything to do with Canadian genealogy, family history or indeed, Canadian history. Some of those include: the Peel Collection at the UofA, the Archives of Ontario, the fantastic searchable databases at all of the provincial Archives. Family History Societies include: Alberta Genealogical Society, Ontario Genealogical Society, BC Genealogical Society, Saskatchewan Genealogical Society and many more. I regularly promote Canadian Archives, Museums and Libraries when speaking with UK genealogists. Often the starting point is Library and Archives Canada. I have written about many of these valuable genealogical resources on My Blog

What's in it for You?
If you are a Family History Society, send me your promotional material. If you are a Museum/Archive, send me your promotional material. If you are a Commercial Vendor, send me your promotional material. I will sell, promote and talk to customers until I am hoarse, on behalf of your organization using whatever material you send my way

To give you a flavour of the show, two of my favourite Canadian genealogists, John D. Reid and M.Diane Rogers reported on their visit to the show. Also, here is the 2016 WDYTYA Live photo gallery

Your Support If you would like your organization to be promoted at WDYTYA Live in Birmingham in 2017, please consider supporting the nominal cost of a table. (More details available.) That is the only outlay required as I will foot the cost of accommodation and transportation. I am passionate to pursue this fantastic opportunity and very proud to have an opportunity to represent my country.

If you have any suggestions, ideas for promotion, or would like to discuss 
any thoughts regarding the above, please do get in touch.  Thank You!

Saturday, 19 November 2016

2016 #WeShallRememberThem #lestweforget tweets you may have missed

Poignant tweets and articles during the 
2016 Remembrance Day weekend
Essex Farm Cemetery, Ypres (Ieper), Belgium     ©Penny Allen
  
Canada Remembers

The Crag and Canyon - Banff Alberta Newspaper

@ReidFiest
Alberta man cleans every veterans' grave in Drumheller cemetery by hand

Twin sisters trace father's wartime  footprints on German battlefield. Via Drumheller Mail. (Alberta)

Margaret Dougherty  @emdeeinTO remembers her family 
We Remember 1: Sapper John Matheson 1884-1964
We Remember 2: Private Frank Matheson 1892-1949
We Remember 3: Private Andrew Horne 1890-1917
https://neverendingfamily.blogspot.co.uk/?m=1

Remembering a Grandfather Who Served - an article written by Cheyenne Stapley in 2012, but well worth representing here. A boy from the Prairie who joined the Royal Canadian Navy in WWII.

@Combat Camera - deployed members pay tribute to fallen comrades during ceremonies abroad.

Meanwhile in Canada @MeanwhileinCana
The late, great Leonard Cohen reciting "In Flanders Fields" by Canadian poet Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae

UK Remembers

@pimpmytweeting
Jo from Essex : Remembering today my Great Grandad, Joseph French, Royal Artillery and my uncle W.H from 22 SAS. Both killed in action.

@AL2SpireiteSt Albans Spireite Also my Great Grandad, Frank Broomfield, Berkshire Regiment. Died Aug 25th 1918

@Hells4Heroes Helen: Always remembering the fallen, while honouring those who survived and came home.... A photo of old soldiers sitting with WW2 soldiers.   #lestweforget #remembranceday @bygrave59

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Lethbridge, Alberta : Interviews of Pioneers conducted in the 1970s

The Glenbow Archives in Calgary, Alberta has a most unique oral history collection.

Charles Ursenbach was a member of the Mormon Church and undertook an interview project which totalled 149 sound recordings. Mr. Ursenbach wrote to over 200 small communities in Southern Alberta requesting their help in identifying potential 'old timer' candidates for interviews. The links below provides information about the interviews and also how to access the transcriptions. I have provided a list of names of the interviewees as well.

These two projects, now part of the Charles Ursenbach fonds, took place in the 1970s and 1980s; one project involved interviewing members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and the other was sponsored by the Alberta Department of Culture, Youth and Recreation.
A brief history of organization of the collection and summary of contents .
Table of Contents:
Series 1 Oral history projects. -- 1971-1985
Series 2 Charles Ursenbach's personal papers. -- 1924-1985, predominant 1973-1985
Series 3  Photographs. -- [ca. 1872]-1979 - includes scanned documents

Inventory : Arranged alphabetically by the name of the person interviewed. Sound recordings: unfortunately many are not dated. Transcripts: dates given are of the date the interview was conducted.

Names of interviewees:
ACKROYD, ALEXANDER, ALGER, ALLEN, ALLRED, ANDERSON, ATKINS
BARKER, BATES, BECKHAM, BEECHER, BENNER, BIRD, BOUCHER, BOWDEN, BRADSHAW, BRANDLEY, BRANTON, BREWERTON, BRIDGE, BROOKS, BULLOCK, BURT-JOHNS, BURTON
CHRISTIANSEN, COHEN, COLLETT, COLWELL, CONDON, COOMBS, CORDARA, COUSINS, CRARER, CUTTING
DAHL, DAVIES, deMILLE, DEMPSEY, DENNING, DICKENS, DONKIN, DUCE, DUNLOP, DUNN
ELLIOTT, ELLISON, EVANS, EVANSON
FARWELL, FISH, FLETCHER, FRANCIS, FRODSHAM, FRY
GEDLAMAN, GLADSTONE, GLENN, GOODRIDGE, GRAHAM, GRAY, GREEN, GUNN
HAGE, HAMILTON, HANKS, HANSON, HARKER, HARVEY, HEMUS, HICKEN, HO SIP, HOWSON, HUDSON
IRWIN
JACOBS, JENKINS, JENSEN, JOHNSON
KEARL, KENNEY, KING, KITCHEN, KLASSEN, KNIGHT
LAYTON, LEASE, LEAVITT, LeBARON, LEE, LEECH, LEIGHTON, LITTLE, LOTT, LOW, LYONS
MacASKILL, MAIR, MARSHALL, MARTIN, MATKIN, McALLISTER, McELHONE, McKINNON, McPHEE, MEIKLE, MELCHIN, MENDENHALL, MIDGLEY, MILLER, MOXLEY, MURRAY
NICHOLSON, NIELSEN, NEWCOMBE, NORTON, NYE
OVIATT
PALMER, PANABAKER, PARKER, PAXMAN, PAYNE, PERRETT, PETERSEN, PIERSON, PILLING, PITCHER, PLATT, PORTER, POULSEN, PRATT, PRICE, PUE, PURNELL, PUZEY
RASMUSSEN, RAWSON, RAWSTHORNE, REA, REDD, REMINGTON, RIRIE, ROBERTS, ROBERTSON, ROLLINS, ROMERIL, ROMNEY, ROSENVALL, RUSSELL
SABEY, SALMON, SCOTT, SEELY, SELMAN, SENTER, SHACKLEFORD, SHEPPARD, SHERWOOD, SHIELDS, SIRRINE, SMITH, SNOW, SPACKMAN, SPENCER, SPRATT, STANDEN, STAYSKO, STEELE, STEVENS, STODDARD, STONEHOCKER, STRINGAM, STRINGER
TANNER, TAYLOR, THOMSON, TINGLE, TURNER
URSENBACH
VANCE, VRBA
WALKER, WARREN, WATHEN, WATSON, WESTERSUND, WESTON, WHITEHEAD, WILD, WOOD, WOOLF, WOOLLEY, WRIGHT
YOUNG.
Here's hoping you will find someone you know in this list!

Monday, 7 November 2016

St. Albert AB 150 Family Stories

St. Albert is a city of 60,000+, located north-west of Edmonton. Founded in 1861 by Father Lacombe, and originally a Métis community, the city is planning a number of events to celebrate the 150th birthday of Canada. St. Albert History This was announced in the April issue of the St. Albert Gazette.

  Canada150 is a nation wide 
  celebration of Canada's 150th
  birthday. Many communities
  across the country are
  celebrating in unique ways. 
  This is a list of the community
  events taking place: 

The events: Collecting 150 stories from city residents about their histories and hopes for the the future, whether that is by oral histories (interviews) or in video or print. These will be shared online once they have been compiled. A very popular community block party will be held for the entire city. A public art project is being planned to 'celebrate the past, present and future of Canada'. You will be able to follow as the art is being created and the final artwork will be unveiled at the arts festival in 2017.

Lastly, and perhaps of interest to historians, is the newspaper's plan to publish a story about one element of St. Albert that is 150 years old on the last Wednesday of each month until July 2017. These articles, written by Kevin Ma highlight various historical figures as well as significant landmarks. Here is a list so far.

July 27 A Bridge to the Past
www.stalbertgazette.com/article/A-bridge-to-the-past-20160727

August 31  A city's roots are through it's farms
www.stalbertgazette.com/article/A-citys-roots-are-through-its-farms-20160831

September 28 The Law comes to St. Albert
www.stalbertgazette.com/article/The-Law-comes-to-St-Albert-20160928

October 26 Moving through time
www.stalbertgazette.com/article/moving-through-time-20161026

November 30  The builder of peace : Lacombe's trials in the west still resonate today, say historians
http://www.stalbertgazette.com/article/The-builder-of-peace-20161130

St. Albert Genealogy related links:

A Storied Past: Recollections of St. Albert - This program will use personal stories to preserve the histories of St. Albert.

Alberta Genealogical Society - Edmonton Branch - direct enquiries regarding St. Alberta genealogical research to the Edmonton Branch

Musee Heritage - Archives and Library  - This archive has a Métis Genealogy database - a very unique contribution by Elizabeth Macpherson, a previous assistant curator. Their website states it is only available in the archives. I am very pleased that they also support Gail Morin’s work on Métis Families, which covers all of North America. My personal research was certainly enhanced by accessing Gail's work!

St Albert Public Library Genealogy Club - a very active genealogy club which meets once a month at the public library, ask the 'Genealogy Genies' for help!

St. Albert + Sturgeon County GenWeb site - this website has some information on Ukranian genealogy research

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Cambridgeshire (U.K.) Family History Resources

Do you like free genealogy resources? Even better if the free resources are provided by someone with hands-on experience with old records? The article on p.12 in the September 2016 of the Who Do You Think You Are magazine caught my eye.

Image from Mike Petty's
Internet Archive page
Mike Petty, MBE, is a retired librarian of the Cambridge Central Library (for 30 years) who has shared three catalogues of material from the Cambridgeshire Collection. Mike uploaded this material to Internet Archive where it is free for anyone to access and discover treasures about their Cambridgeshire ancestors.

The three catalogues include: A Cambridgeshire Bibliography (books, pamphlets, articles and periodicals in the Cambridgeshire Collection); Cambridgeshire Illustrations and a compliation of Local History Articles he wrote for the Cambridge Evening News and Cambridge Weekly News between 1984 and 2014.

Some of the collections on his website include: Cambridgeshire Collection in Lion Yard LibraryCatalogues and Indexes; Engravers; Illustrations; Newspapers; Photographers; Streets and Houses; Village Studies

Mike has also indexed Great War stories from the Ely Standard and provides them for free on his website.

Although I confess to know little about Cambridgeshire, the fact that someone who used to work in a local studies library is concerned that years and years of knowledge might be lost forever to then provide those resources for free is astounding. What great passion and foresight to save and share his research and efforts in such a public place, but also with an organisation that is entrusted with the long term care of such precious data. Perhaps this is the way forward for other libraries, librarians, family history researchers?

Well done, Mike!

Mike Petty email: mikepetty13a@gmail.com

https://archive.org/details/@mike_petty

Monday, 17 October 2016

The Grasslands Project - an Oral History of small town Saskatchewan

Harvest Wheat Field by gripped
accessed 17.10.2016 Flickr CC License 
I am by nature a seeker of interesting stories. The Lethbridge Public Library website is where I often find out what's happening in Southern Alberta. I enjoy reading their online monthly newsletter "Happenings" which is free. One 'prairie-ish' article that caught my eye was the 'Special Film Evening' showcasing the Grasslands Project.

This project, provided and supported by the National Film Board of Canada, was the brain child of Scott Parker who project managed the entire production. It really is an innovative oral history project. In the summer of 2015, Scott spent 6 months in southern Saskatchewan, highlighting the lives of residents, including farmers, ranchers, rural firefighters and hotel owners to name a few. I particularly like this quote:

"There is power in people telling their own stories back to themselves [...]"

It really does speak as well of the importance of oral history as much as the importance of highlighting rural lives. This documentary gives a glimpse into these communities, provides a feeling for the prairie vistas and perhaps it may also help you imagine what it may have been like for your ancestors to live in small town Canada.

Here is a list of the shorts, with my comments. (For more details, please see the Grasslands Project link.):

No Other Place 9:12min. This was such a beautiful piece to open the documentary, lots of views of the prairies and heartfelt commentary of their love for the prairie from the 5 artists who were interviewed.

A Rancher's view  8:22min. Miles Anderson and his family ranch over 20,000 acres of land close by the Grasslands National Park. Their cattle have been a part of the preservation of the endangered sage grouse population in the park. Miles collaborates every day with the weather, the grasshoppers and Parks Canada.

After the Fire  9:27min. I can't tell you how much I respect volunteer firefighters. While I was living in rural Alberta, there was a horrible train accident in the main street area of town, and they were first on the scene. Often these volunteers are faced with the reality of seeing friends and family are involved. A very tough job, emotionally and physically, but every small town needs these dedicated volunteers.

Life Out Here  11:45min. Women ranchers and farmers are few and far between. Very strong personalities which are required to get the job done. Having a little bit of a 'tough' streak is really helpful too.  A love for the land and animals, but also 'just getting on with it' is very apparent in this documentary.

Homecoming 7:26min. The town parade, rodeo, fun-fair and baseball tournament all take place during one weekend in the summer. Run by volunteers with support from the town administration and sometimes funded by the provincial government, this annual event is a highlight of the year. In the photo on the NFB website you can clearly see the parade is all about the kids. This is a little piece I wrote about the centennial celebrations of some Alberta communities.

Val Marie Hotel  10:32  Often the hotel is the hub of the town, it's where the 'retired' farmers meet for coffee regularly every morning or moms and kids have a quick bite before heading off for hockey practice. If you ('an out of towner') walk in for a cup of coffee, all conversation stops as you are analyzed for your place in the community.

Population 21 9:17min  This is a poignant look at Wood Mountain, which has lost it's railway, elevators, hotel and the school. Shows the determination of it's residents and how they support each other at all times. At the end of the clip, 212 people showed up for the Fall Supper which is a great community event.

Les Fransaskois  8:35min.  Gravelbourg, a French speaking community in Southern Saskatchewan is unique because they feel they are the minority in a province where most speak English. As one person said in the film : "French remains a living language because people [in Gravelbourg] defend it."

The Last One  6:16min.  Herb Pidt left the farm at 17 and returned 30 years later. Now there is no one in the family who will be carrying on the tradition, so the farm is slowly disappearing. This is a sad but not unique tale as many 'nextgens' are not interested in continuing the family business.

Generations  7:47min. Ken and Shawn Catherwood, so alike in their love of the farm and the land. Different (meaning new) ideas about the technicalities of farming. Changes ahead, but it is apparent they are willing to listen and learn from each other. A lot of pride in handing down the family farm from generation to generation.

Thank you to Scott and especially to all of the participants in these films for the opportunity to share real life rural stories with my readers.

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Hudson's Bay Company Family History

This post was created after reading a Twitter re-tweet of a post by @HBCHeritage  - HBC Letter Books (Copy book of letters outward 29 May 1680 - 5 July 1687 - this link leads to a post about the collection of the Letter Books held by the HBC Archives).

I have a personal interest in the HBCo., as one branch of my family tree were Red River Settlers and were indirectly affected by the work of the Hudson's Bay, in their journey from the Highlands of Scotland to Manitoba in the early 1800s.

At one time, the Hudson's Bay Company held most of their business records in London, UK, but these were transferred to Winnipeg in 1974. History of the records.

Hudson's Bay Store, Winnipeg, MB
© Penny Allen
The Hudson's Bay Archives website has much information, including an index of employees, which is freely available:   https://www.gov.mb.ca/chc/archives/hbca/biographical/index.html?print
      However, please note this is an ongoing project and not every employee may be listed. The explanation document also gives descriptions of occupations: https://www.gov.mb.ca/chc/archives/hbca/biographical/biographical_sheet_revealed.pdf

On this page of the Archives of Manitoba there is information about employees at both Norway House and York Factory Officers & Servants Ledgers

A Twitter follower asked about HBCo. land records as her ggrandparents bought HBCo. land - these are on microfilm (may be borrowed through the traditional inter-institutional loan program ).

From a publication I found at the Society of Genealogists (London) titled 'Beaver House', I was able to determine a location for the building where the fur pelts were auctioned after arriving from the colonies. (circa 1920s) The cost to build Beaver House was £660,000; the warehouse (cold storage for keeping the approximately 2 million pelts of fur in a premium condition) was nearly 600,000 cubic feet. It was built on a site of the original Church of the Holy Trinity, which was in this location in 1666, the year of the Great Fire. The address is Great Trinity Lane London EC 4. 

Great Trinity Lane,
London
© Penny Allen
A variety of resources resulted from some internet research and by chatting with the volunteers at the Society of Genealogists.
  1. A WDYTYA episode had Sarah Millican looking for her ancestor who worked for the Hudson's Bay Company. 
  2. The first ship of the HBCo. - was the Nonsuch, a ketch, Capt. Zachariah Gillam, 1668. Other company's ships were : Prince Rupert, King George, Sea Horse and HMS Shark. (source: The Return of the Nonsuch: the ship that launched an Empire, by Laird Rankin, Heartland Associates Inc., 2004.)
  3. A couple of sites for more pictures of the Hudson's Bay buildings in London: http://gregwtravels.travellerspoint.com/347/ ;
    http://www.hbcheritage.ca/hbcheritage/history/places/buildings/hbc-in-london
  4. Great Trinity Lane
    London
    © Penny Allen
  5. The Lyons family website provides information about their ancestor who worked for the HBCo. http://www.lyons-family.co.uk/Lyons/1880-lyons-william-john/hudson-bay/hudson-bay.html
Great Trinity Lane,
London

© Penny Allen
There is a very good article on doing research at the Hudson's Bay Archives, and although a little dated, a lot of the material is helpful to gain an understanding of the organization of the records.
http://afhs.ab.ca/aids/talks/notes_mar98.html

Hudson's Bay Record Society has 24 titles in a series published under: The Champlain Society for the Hudson's Bay Record Society. These titles can be searched in your local library system.


There are a fair few publications about the Hudson's Bay Company, the Fur Trade and it's effect on the economy of the New World and the United Kingdom. These are some rather interesting ones.

The West and Beyond: New Perspectives on an Imagined Region edited by Sarah Carter, Alvin Finkel and Peter Fortna. Based on a conference held at the University of Alberta in 2008.
     The chapter: 'Visualizing Space, Race and History in the North: Photographic Records in the Athabasca-Mackenzie Basin' by Matt Dyce and James Opp outlines the career of photographer Charles W. Mather and also touches on the 'Hudson's Bay Company Album' which includes pictures of indigenous people packing supplies.

The Remarkable History of the Hudson's Bay Company: Including that of the French Traders of North-western Canada and of the North-west, XY, and Astor Fur Companies by George Bryce, published in 1900. This link provides a snippet view but gives pertinent resources.

Empire of the Bay: The Company of Adventurers that Seized a Continent 
by Peter Newman. Google Books provides a snippet view which describes the company's history and gives great information about the settlements, the posts and the people.

Mural above elevators
Hudson's Bay Store, Winnipeg, MB
© Penny Allen
If you have ancestors linked with the Hudson's Bay Company, these records are easily accessible, and from personal experience, when I visited the Archives in Winnipeg a number of years ago, the staff are pleasant and very helpful. Happy searching!

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Immigrants to NB, NS, NF, QC pre-1810 (includes ships names)


Interesting to find that some early publications have references to Canada, which wasn't Canada at the time, but the 'Colonies' or 'British North America'. These particular entries that I have briefly transcribed (there is more information in the book), describe settlers in Halifax, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Quebec between 1763 and 1810. Even though it says 'America' in the title, please don't disregard them if your ancestor settled in Canada. They are a valuable 'hidden' resource that deserve investigating further!

Title: Immigrants to America appearing in English Records by Frank Smith published in 1976 by The Everton Publishers, Inc.

Quotation: "There is no magic wand to the finding of a document within which appears the name and identify of a man or woman who was the first of that family to settle in the New World." [...] "The textbook series leading to an understanding of these sources is Genealogical Research in England and Wales." (David E. Gardner and Frank Smith: Genealogical Research in England and Wales Salt Lake City: Bookcraft Inc.,) p.1.

Introduction explains that these entries have been extracted from the Prerogative Court of (the Archbishop of) Canterbury PCC. These are now available online via some commercial sites such as Ancestry, Find My Past and Generations, to name a few. Use the 'card catalogue' option to specifically search the PCC collection.

Halifax (808) p.81 1805 MONCKTON, Hon. Cath. Eliz. (wife of Hon. Wm. Geo. M.), dau. of  George HANDFIELD, late of Halifax in America.

New Brunswick 11 p.2 1789 Nathaniel DICKENSON

Newfoundland (685) p.68 20 August 1763 SLATER, John (resides at Havannah) grandson of HAMILTON, Otho (resides at Nfld.)

Quebec (636) p.56 20 March 1810 COFFIN, Thomas Aston

St. John Co., New Brunswick (626) p.55 1795 WILLIAMS, Elijah of St. John co. and city of St. John New Brunswick, Esq. (formerly resident)


Names of Ships mentioned in this volume:

Bonny Bess, Concord, Desire, Dolphin, Eleanor, Elizabeth, Expedition, Feversham, Flower, Flower de Luce, Frederick, Friendship, Globb, Good Intent, Hope, Hopewell, John, Katherine, Le Honors Desire, Le Prince, Marmaduke, Mary Anne, Marygold, Mayflower, Merchant Delight, Norwich, Polly, Primrose, Rainbow, Recovery, Richard & Judith, Sally, Samuel, Sarah, Sir John, Speedwell, The Bear, The Peggy, The Plough, The Reformation, The Susannah, The Swallow, The Tryall, The London Merchant, The Marygold, Tristam & Jane, Whale, William & Francis, William & George, William & Mary College, Va, Woodhouse. 

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Twitter Treasures No. 4

My version of a Twitter bird
© Penny Allen
What I learned on Twitter this week.
14-21 Aug.2016 | Issue 4


I know, pretty old school, kind of like newspaper cuttings that libraries
used to do a long time ago.
But I just can't get over the feeling that I miss really neat things on Twitter. 
So every week or so I will share particularly Canadian content, but will bend the rules if it has a British spin, or an interesting immigrant story. 
My interpretation of the tweet or retweet is added.


publicdomainvectors. org
BC
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve tweeted about the Pinetree Line radar station, built during the Cold War. According to Bruce Forsyth's page, there were numerous 'Pinetree Lines' built across the country during the '50s for the purposes of an early warning system against suspected enemy attack. Forsyth took his information from Ren L’Ecuyer’s Pinetree Line web site.


MB
Tina Adcock tweeted a picture by the HBC Heritage of Letter Books housed in the Visual Vault at their archives in Winnipeg. An example of Letter books are 'copy books' of letters outward, 29 May 1680-5 July 1687. There is an interesting thesis on the Open Library by UBC student Elizabeth Mancke in 1984 that discusses 'Copy Books'. Title : The Hudson's Bay Company and the Management of Long-Distance Trade 1670-1730.

NU
https://archive.org/details/cihm_42416
James B. Bandow tweeted about the Government of Nunavut's agreement with the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa. This agreement places Nunavut artefacts (140,000 items) in Ottawa for 5 years. Some of the artefacts include grave markers from Beechey Island for the last Franklin expedition. The  agreement indicates this is planned for 2017.

ON
Jewish Genealogical Society of Toronto tweeted an article from Torontoist.com about the history of Toronto street signs.

Chris Walters tweeted finding a maquette (a sculptor's small preliminary model or sketch) -in Algoma, ON- of General Wolfe's statue in London UK

Check out:

Tina Adcock tweeted about Maclean's Magazine providing its archives for free.

British and Canadian uniforms during the War of 1812. Carmen @ cdnhistorybits

Canada's History tweet is looking for submissions to it's Lost Stories Project. Do you have a family story that is unique and deserves to be told? Contact historylost@concordia.ca

Kathryn Lake Hogan tweeted a story from the Regina Leader Post about Elaine Ayre's discovery of her family's story from Norway to Iowa to Estevan, Saskatchewan through a family heirloom, an 1870 doll.  A book that Elaine self published in 2014, The Princess Doll's Scrapbook tells the story of her great-grandmother's journey to Canada. 

More Twitter Treasures No. 1, 2, 3