Archive for August, 2010

Now available in our e-store

Monday, August 30th, 2010

This book was written to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the migration of over 800 families from the German Palatinate to Ireland… and then to Canada. Many people with Irish ancestry Are actually Irish Palatines. You might be one of them, so take a look at this book.

Check it out in our store

1837 Rebellion Society

Friday, August 27th, 2010

The Rebellion of 1837 was a rough time in Upper Canada (Ontario). While the rebellion itself caused relatively little bloodshed, it divided families and tested the ideals of many. The rebellion was not successful in overturning the government, but it did lead to union of Upper and Lower Canada and the eventual implementation of Responsible Government in the colonies.

If your ancestors were involved in any side of this battle, you may qualify for membership in The 1837 Rebellion Society. Membership is open to anyone who can prove descent from any of the following:

  • a person who was charged with being a rebel
  • a member of a militia unit that was mobilized during the rebellion
  • a member of the regular army who was in Upper Canada during the rebellion
  • a person who was named as being involved in some form with the rebellion and its aftermath (e.g. court official at a trial, juror, etc.)

The proof must meet genealogical standards in order for you to qualify for membership.

Visit the 1837 Rebellion section of our website for more information and to download an application form.

Huguenots at the Library

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Could you be descended from a Huguenot?

The Huguenots were French Protestants who were forced to flee from religious persecution in France during the 17th century. They fled to other parts of Europe and many eventually wound up in North America.

Many people with Huguenot ancestors belonged to the Huguenot Society of Canada. Unfortunately, the Huguenot Society of Canada ceased operation in 2006. Since then, their library collection has been on semi-permanent loan to the OGS provincial library. We hold books and journals that cover topics in Huguenot heritage and genealogy.

We also hold a series of Huguenot Family Papers that can be viewed by appointment at the provincial office.

Our collection of Huguenot Journals including the following:

1. Huguenot Trails – Published by the Huguenot Society of Canada, Hamilton
    We have occasional issues of this publication going back to 1966

2. Huguenot & Walloon Gazette – Published by the Huguenot & Walloon Gazette Association, England
We have issues from 1986 – 1989

3. On Huguenot Street – Published by the Huguenot Historical Society, New York
 We have issues from 1999 – 2001

4. Hugenotten (German language) - Published by Deutschen Hugenotten-Vereins e.V.
We have issues from 1968 – 2006

5. Transactions of the Huguenot Society of South Carolina – The Society, South Carolina
We have issues from 1990 – 2004

6. Huguenot Society of South Africa Bulletin – Published by The Society, South Africa
We have issues from 1967 – 1991

7. We also have select Publications, Proceedings and Quarto Series from the Huguenot Society of London

Visit the library to request any of these items.

Also check out our Library Catalogue to see what other Huguenot materials we have!
Search “Huguenot” in the subject field.

On our website: Member Message Board

Monday, August 23rd, 2010
web address graphic

Image courtesy: Renjith krishnan, link below

The Ontario Genealogical Society website, like the Society itself, is not just a place to go to access databases full of information. Our membership is made up of people like you who are passionate about family history research. OGS provides genealogists with the opportunity to access some of the greatest genealogical resources out there: other genealogists.

Members are welcome at vibrant Branch meetings all across the province and if you can’t make it to a monthly meeting, we have set up a brand new Message Board in the Members Only section of our website.

Here’s a quick peek at the hot topics being discussed these days:

So take out a membership and join our growing community of genealogists.

Image: renjith krishnan /

Interview with a Volunteer: Steve Fulton

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

Without the hard work of volunteers all across the province, OGS would simply cease to exist. Volunteers are the backbone of our organization. This feature is designed to introduce you to some of them and let you know about the work they’ve been doing

Steve Fulton is a member of OGS and Niagara Peninsula Branch

 How long have you been involved with OGS?

 What hats do you wear / have you worn?
Co-Chair – Newsletter Assembler, Web and Tech Support, Publicly and Sales Table

 What project or event has been a highlight of your work with OGS?
Rebuilding Niagara’s Website and getting the Paypal Setup to accept Credit Cards is one of the many highlights, the biggest one is working with people who are dedicated to the work of the Branch.

 How did you become interested in genealogy?
My wife told me to get a hobby, so I did.

 Would you like to share a favorite genealogical adventure you have had or tell us about a part of your family history that you particularly enjoyed learning?
Found a new cousin that was living 10 minutes away.  Didn’t know he existed and he had been forgotten about in the family ranks.  Bringing him and his family back into the family was very exciting for me.

At the Library: DNA testing in genealogy

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

Are you considering DNA testing as part of your family history research?

DNA tesing has been a popular topic in genealogist circles over the last few years. In this month’s issue of Families, Paul Caverly has written an article about his own experiences using DNA testing in his genealogy research. The article can be found on page 6 of the August 2010 issue.

Caverly’s article mentions some of the resources he used to learn more about DNA testing and genealogy. Some of the books and magazines he mentioned are part of the provincial library collection.

DNA and Family History: how genetic testing can advance your genealogical research
By: Chris Pomery
Toronto: Dundurn Press
Pomery 2004

He also refers to articles in the following magazines:
Family Tree Magazine,
Family Chronicle
APG Quarterly.

We subscribe to these three magazines and you are welcome to visit the library to read the articles he has referred  to.

To find other books on DNA research, visit our library catalogue.
You can use the following words in the SUBJECT field:

Now available in our e-store

Monday, August 16th, 2010

Interviewing your living relatives is a really great way to help preserve your family history for the future. This book gives you the questions you need to ask and offers strategies for best interviewing.

Check it out in our store.

Seven Reasons to do your Genealogy

Friday, August 13th, 2010

Ever wondered (or been asked) why genealogy matters? Here are some reasons to research your family history.

  1. Honour Your Ancestors: The idea of honouring your parents and ancestors is valued around the world. What better way to do this than to learn who your ancestors were and ensure they will be remembered in your family?
  2. Know Your Health History: Scientists are determining that more and more health problems have a genetic component. Learning and recording your family medical history can show you what illnesses you are predisposed to. This is helpful to both you and your doctor.
  3. Find that Long Lost Cousin: Sometimes family members lose touch with one another. Piecing together your family history may lead you to uncover living relatives you never knew you had.
  4. Exercise your Mind: Genealogy is research. To be successful, a genealogist must develop good research skills and be up to date on the latest resources, tools and techniques for finding and evaluating information (not all the information out there can be believed). Researching your family history engages the brain and sharpens the mind.
  5. Know Who You Are: We don’t just get our health problems from our ancestors. You may have your grandfather’s nose and your great grandmother’s ability to play piano. When you learn where your ancestors came from and what they did, you will find elements of yourself too. Learning about them, helps you develop your own sense of who you are and where you came from. This gives you a solid foundation on which to build your future.
  6. Fun and Adventure: Do you like a good mystery novel? Or tv shows like CSI? Genealogy is detective work too. Feel the rush of excitement as you find the right piece of information to solve the mystery of what happened to your great-great- uncle. Then be adventurous and travel to the country where he was born.
  7. Leave a legacy for your descendants: Just as you will learn about yourself through studying your family history, when you record what you’ve learned, you give your descendants the same chance to know who they are and where they came from.

Why do you do your genealogy?

 Want to get started? Check out our How to Research Your Family History page.

Top Canadian Genealogy websites

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

Never doubt that genealogy is popular. It’s hard to search for anything on the internet without stumbling across a couple of genealogy websites. Of course, with so many options, it’s hard to know where to start.

Image: Simon Howden, link below

Here are a few lists of Best Canadian Genealogy Sites to help you sort the good sites from those that just take up cyberspace.

Family Chronicle’s 25 Websites for Canadian Genealogy. Family Chronicle is one of several Canadian genealogy magazines published in Ontario.

Genealogy Links – Reference Sites at The Canadian Genealogy Centre recommends a series of mostly Canadian websites for genealogists. They also offer links to genealogical societies’ websites, including ours.

Genealogist Dave Obee’s Can Genealogy page offers a list of Canadian Genealogy sites.

If you’re looking for some sites to visit, check out what these people are recommending. If you already have your favourites, feel free to share them with us in the comments section.

Image: Simon Howden /

New At the Library – August

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

Trying to trace your family in England?

The provincial library has subscribed to a brand new British magazine called Tracing Family History: The magazine is monthly and discusses the most recent issues in genealogy as well as offering advice on researching your family across the pond.

Visit the library to take a look at this publication.