Archive for the ‘OGS projects’ Category

Attention OGS Members: Wanted – An Energetic Individual to Chair the OGS Publishing Committee

Saturday, October 26th, 2013

Publishing genealogy resource books is a central part of the OGS mandate and the Publishing Committee has been fulfilling that mandate for many years now. The committee is now seeking an energetic individual interested in the world of Canadian genealogy to chair the OGS Publishing Committee. We are looking for someone with an understanding of the publication process, and a vision for the future of OGS publishing.

The position would involve taking on a leadership role among a committee of four dedicated volunteers and a professional Editor and working with that team to do the following:
- determine current needs with regards to genealogical publications and work to develop publications to fulfill these needs,
- receive and develop publication proposals with possible authors,
- establish and follow budgets for the titles being published,
- develop marketing plans for titles

If you are interested, please contact the OGS Executive Director at: to discuss your skills and ideas.

FYI:OGS Members Only Resource: Inaugural OGS Genealogy Webinar has now been Archived

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Good news! Genealogy in your Genes is now up and available for viewing in the Members Only section of the OGS website. The feedback for this webinar has been very positive indeed, well worth making the time to sit down and view it.

Don’t forget that our November Webinar, You Use WHAT for Genealogy? Wonderful Uses for Unusual Tools – presented by Thomas MacEntee – is fast approaching: Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. EST

Mr. MacEntee is offering this Webinar using his own online system: Go To Webinar. If you wish to sign up for this Webinar, you may do so using the link provided on the invitation. If you are an OGS Member, but did not receive the invitation, please contact Provincial Office at: and confirm your membership to receive a copy of the invitation.

Please note that OGS is NOT handling registrations for this webinar.

OGS Members Only Resource: IOOF Insurance Papers Database

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

Between 1875 and 1929, the Independent Order of Oddfellows (IOOF) operated a life insurance program. Approximately 60,000 men from all across Canada applied. The program was eventually operated by Empire Life, who held all the application forms. A few years ago Empire Life gave these application forms to the OGS. We have spent nearly four years indexing these forms.

The information on the applications varies depending on the individual applying and the year of the application. Furthermore many men took out a second policy at a later date, and that form may say simply “See policy # …” or it may contain more up-to-date information. If you find several policies for one person, we suggest you purchase at least the one with the earliest policy date.

Each policy consists of a four page 8.5 x 11” document. Information you may expect to find on the application includes the following:

  • Health information
  • Marital status
  • Occupation
  • Beneficiary (generally wife, parent, sibling)
  • Number of siblings and their health information
  • Parents
  • Grandparents (often including age at death but not names)
  • Applicant’s signature
  • Some applications have extra materials as well.

The actual application form contains a great deal more information about the applicant including health information, marital status, occupation, beneficiary of the policy, number of siblings, and a health status of siblings, parents, and grandparents. It also includes the signature of the applicant and may include interesting attachments.

This information could be very useful to someone researching their family history. As a member of the Ontario Genealogical Society, you can search the index to these forms.  Requests to purchase copies of the IOOF papers may be sent to the OGS Membership Coordinator at:  Each form requested costs $10.00 (taxes included).

For more information about this and other OGS Members only databases, please visit the Members Only section on the OGS website.

Please note: The presence of medical information in the application forms and the associated privacy concerns with regards to medical information mean that we cannot make available any forms that were created less than 100 years ago. These forms will become available as the 100 year mark is passed.

Attention OGS Members: Want to help OGS spread knowledge and cultivate future members?

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

We are seeking OGS Members from across Ontario to join the Education and Youth Committee. Help propose and develop initiatives to assist genealogists in building skills and to encourage young people to explore their family history.


Please contact OGS Executive Director Sarah Newitt at: to share your background and ideas.

OGS Applauds Huronia Regional Centre Cemetery Settlement

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

OGS Secretary, Bob Crawford, on behalf of the Society, penned a letter applauding the recent settlement concerning the Huronia Regional Centre, where the Ontario Government promised to maintain the cemetery attached to the Centre and create a registry of those who are buried there.

The letter is available on the OGS website:

OGS Members invited to November Webinar with Thomas MacEntee

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

Our October Webinar was a great success and all OGS Members have received an email invitation to attend our next Webinar.

Title: You Use WHAT for Genealogy? Wonderful Uses for Unusual Tools

Date: Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013

Time: 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. EST

We’ll review a group of familiar apps and websites that are being used in creative ways by the genealogy community. You’ll also learn how to think outside the margins and start re-purposing other apps and sites for your genealogy research.

Mr. MacEntee is offering this Webinar using his own online system: Go To Webinar. If you wish to sign up for this Webinar, you may do so using the link provided on the invitation. If you are a OGS Member, but did not receive the invitation, please contact Provincial Office and confirm your membership to receive a copy of the invitation.

FYI: Call for Presenters for OGS 2014 Webinar Series

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

The Ontario Genealogical Society is pleased to announce a Call for Presenters for its 2014 Webinar Series. Webinars are presented to the OGS membership on a monthly basis. We are looking for new and experienced speakers with topics about Canada, in particular Ontario, as well as ethnic groups such as Irish, Scottish, English, French, German. Presentations about DNA, methodology, and technology/social media in family history will also be considered.

Please send individually up to four topics including your most requested, and new presentations.

What to include:

  • Your name
  • Mailing address
  • Telephone number
  • Email address and website
  • Audience Level
  • Name of Presentation
  • Summary of your presentation (250 characters maximum)
  • Short Bio (50 words maximum)
  • Speaking experience within the last 18 months

Each submission should have a unique subject heading (i.e. kathrynlakehogan1)

Email your submissions no later than 11:59 pm ET, October 31, 2013 to:

Kathryn Lake Hogan, Ontario Genealogical Society Webinar Coordinator at: webinar[at]ogs[dot]on[dot]ca

Notifications will be emailed on or before November 30, 2013.

An Open Letter to the City of Toronto: Please Ensure the Preservation of the Fegan Home

Saturday, October 5th, 2013

OGS, along with the broader genealogical and heritage community, has learned that the City of Toronto has a current interest in the site of the former Fegan Boys Distributing Home at 295 George St. in the City of Toronto. The structure was damaged by fire in 2012. Many of the boys passing through these walls left their mark by way of inscribing their names and the dates of their stays on the bricks. These names are still visible.

We have written a letter that requests that the City of Toronto seriously consider the historic significance of this treasure and find a way to preserve it. Click here to view the letter on the OGS website.

Opportunity to help shape the future of our Ontario Genealogical Society.

Saturday, September 21st, 2013

Are you an outgoing person with good communication skills? Do you know others in The Society who have the skills to lead OGS in the 21st Century? Can you contribute to building a strong board and a strong Society?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, then joining the Nomination Committee might be just your cup of tea! OGS needs members who will help find others to lead OGS into the future.

Contact the Chair of the Nomination Committee at: pastpresident[at] – to inquire about this opportunity to help shape the future of our Society.

Announcing the Inaugural Members Only OGS Genealogy Webinar: Genealogy in Your Genes

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

Update: October 4, 2013

This webinar is now full. Not to worry though, it will be archived in the Members only section of the OGS website sometime next week. A notice will be posted once it is up.

Many thanks to all of our Members for the enthusiastic response for this event.

All OGS Members are invited to attend our first Members Only Genealogy Webinar

Date: Saturday October 5, 2013

Time: 4:00 pm EDT

Via: Adobe Connect

Guest Speaker: Judy G. Russell, the Legal Genealogist

Topic: Genealogy in Your Genes

The key to so many genealogical secrets may be locked inside your genes — but today those secrets can be unlocked through DNA testing. Learn about the three major test types — YDNA, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and the new autosomal DNA testing — and what each offers to the genealogist.

The Legal Genealogist Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL, is a lecturer, educator and writer who enjoys helping others understand a wide variety of genealogical issues, ranging from the interplay between genealogy and the law to the way DNA tests can be used in genealogy.

Ms. Russell is a trustee of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, a member of the National Genealogical Society, the Association of Professional Genealogists and numerous state societies, and on the faculty of the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University, and the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh.

OGS Webinars allow you to expand your genealogy knowledge from the comfort of your own home.

This event is open to OGS members only and is free as a benefit of your membership. For more information about Webinars, visit the Webinars link in the OGS Members Only area.

To receive access to this Webinar, please pre-register for the event by contacting Brenda Halliday at Attendance is limited.