BIFHSGO April Monthly Meeting

Join in person at Knox Presbyterian Church (Lisgar & Elgin) in Geneva Hall, or online by registering here

Back to Basics: Church Records / 9 a.m. EDT

Presenter: Ken McKinlay

Prior to the establishment of civil birth, marriage, and death registrations, there were parish registers. This Back to Basics session will be looking at various registers and where to find those sometimes elusive records.

Ken McKinlay is a genealogy researcher with over 20 years of trial and error experience in researching his own family’s history in Canada, United States of America, England, Scotland and Ireland.

A member of British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa (AKA BIFHSGO), and former Board member, and the Ottawa Branch of the Ontario Ancestors (AKA Ontario Genealogical Society),  his speciality is methodologies for researching family history and also how to use technology to assist with doing the research.

Vimy: Exploring the Battle and the Legend / 10 a.m. EDT

Presenter: Dr. Tim Cook

Vimy is more than a battle from the First World War. It is common to hear that Vimy marks the “birth of a nation,” a claim repeated in school textbooks, by politicians, and in the news. Yet what is meant by this phrase? Do Canadians actually believe that Canada was born at Vimy, 50 years after Confederation? How did the four-day battle of Vimy in April 1917 transform into an origin story?

This was no militarist plot. While not all Canadians believed in Vimy’s importance, enough did, and the idea of Vimy was invigorated with the building of Walter Allward’s monument on the ridge. The monument’s unveiling in 1936 by King Edward VIII was attended by more than 6,000 Canadian veterans who crossed the Atlantic. Since then, Vimy has been incorporated into Canadian history, although its meaning has changed with each generation.

Based on his award-winning book, Vimy: The Battle and the Legend, Dr. Tim Cook will explore the emergence of the Vimy idea, its changing meaning, and its endurance as a symbol of Canadian service and sacrifice.

Tim Cook is the Chief Historian and Director of Research at the Canadian War Museum. He was the curator for the First World War permanent gallery at the CWM, and has curated additional temporary, travelling, and digital exhibitions. He is the author of sixteen books and over a hundred academic articles and book chapters. In 2012, he was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for his contributions to Canadian history and in 2013 he received the Governor General’s History Award. He is a Director of Canada’s History Society, a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, and a member of the Order of Canada.

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