Ottawa City Archives News

I was at the Archives to research on Thursday morning,  At present, you need an appointment. Having an appointment has advantages.  Olga knew what I wanted and had the volumes I needed to hand with a generously distanced workspace set up.

Encountering City Archvisit Paul Henry on leaving he mentioned that the next stage of opening up is anticipated for 7 September. Partner library volunteers will be able to work again. Lessons have been learned during the pandemic and it won’t be business as before COVID.

Paul even suggested that they’re thinking about opening the meeting space although not immediately after the 7th.

A project to catalogue 30,000 items — only vaguely labelled boxes — like “legal” written on the outside — has just started with the first 100 boxes done. 

Did you know the current Archives Building has now been in operation for 10 years!

Forthcoming UK and Ireland Genealogy Releases

Here, from are genealogy books expected to be released later this year.

British Census, The, by Simon Smith
Shire Publications
This title will be released on July 27, 2021.
Kindle Edition
$9.99 $15.20

Tracing your Ancestors using the UK Historical Timeline: A Guide for Family Historians
by Angela Smith and Neil Bertram
Pen and Sword
This title will be released on August 18, 2021.

Place-names and the Local Historian, by Nollaig O Muraile
Four Courts Press
This title will be released on November 29, 2021.

Identifying Cap Badges: A Family Historian’s Guide
by Graham Bandy
Pen and Sword
This title will be released on December 7, 2021.

Secret Ealing

On The London Historians’ Blog, Alan Fortune reviews a new book Secret Ealing by Paul Howard Lang & Dr Jonathan Oates.

He comments “it provides some valuable nuggets of information to supplement the contents of works on Ealing’s history already in existence, as well as stories with which tour guides, for example, could amuse and entertain their audiences.”

Other comments: “illustrated by excellent photographs”, “some chapters are rather dry and factual; others are livelier and more discursive”, “the book has no bibliography or index.”

Read the review at

New Genealogy Books at the Public Library

Now that public libraries are opened up, albeit with COVID precautions and reduced service, here’s a tabulation of the 2021 published non-fiction genealogy books available in the Ottawa and Toronto systems.

Library Title Author
Ottawa The Psychology of Family History : Exploring Our Genealogy Moore, Susan
Ottawa Sharing your Family History Online : A Guide for Family Historians Paton, Chris
Ottawa The Stitt Family of Stittsville ON : Tracing Some Descendants of James Stitt, 1773-1844 & Elizabeth Steele, 1783-1848… Brown, Gerald R.
Ottawa You Have A Match Lord, Emma
Toronto An infinite history : the story of a family in France over three centuries Rothschild, Emma
Toronto Sharing your Family History Online : A Guide for Family Historians Paton, Chris
Toronto A most interesting problem : what Darwin’s Descent of man got right and wrong about human evolution Compilation
Toronto Ancestors: a project of the Boston Review Arts in Society Program Compilation
Toronto La famille Darveau du Lac-Saint-Jean, de père en fils : (1903-1998) Darveau, Aldéi

The list does not include family history-themed fiction and videos. They include Little Pieces of Me, by Alison Hammer in the Ottawa and Toronto systems:

Summary/Review: Investigating DNA revelations that say her father is a man she never met, Paige learns about her mother’s past as a straitlaced university student who had a one-night stand with the campus golden boy.

In the Toronto system, The summer of lost letters, by Hannah Reynolds

Summary/Review: The discovery of a packet of old letters sends seventeen-year-old Abby Schoenberg to Nantucket to unravel a family mystery about her grandmother’s past, but things get complicated when Abby meets the cute grandson of a prominent family who wants to stop her from investigating.

CEF Beechwood: John Sallaway

Born on 15 May 1895 in Arnprior (or Allumette Island), John Sallaway (40539) gave his occupation as car checker (at the Chateau Laurier), grey eyes, red hair, 5ft 8in tall when he enlisted on 22 September 1914. He left for the UK on 4 October and served with the 1st Brigade of the Canadian Field Artillery.

On 27 June 1916 at Ypres, he received a severe shrapnel wound to the upper part of the right thigh which kept him in various hospitals until discharged the following February. He was granted permission to marry Bessie Emily Rummery in late 1917 and returned to Canada on 8 February 1919. He had a son George (1919-1995). 

On return, he worked for the Ottawa Fire Department, died of tuberculous on 21 July 1921 and was interred in section 19, lot 134 NW at Beechwood Cemetery.  The commemorative stake with firefighter symbols is nearby his grave

The Week’s Online Genealogy Events

Choose from free online events in the next five days. All times are ET except as noted. Those in red are Canadian, bolded if local to Ottawa. Assume registration in advance is required; check so you’re not disappointed.

Tuesday 20 July, 2 pm:  Virtual Genealogy Drop-In, from Ottawa Branch of OGS and The Ottawa Public Library.

Tuesday 20 July, 8 pm: The Time of Cholera: A Case Study about Historical Context, by Alison Hare for Legacy Family Tree Webinars and BCG.

Tuesday 20 July 2:30 pm: Sharing: Non-Traditional Family History Books, by Betsy Thal Gephart for Allen Country Public Library Genealogy Center.

Wednesday 21 July, 11 am: Prisoners of War in ICRC Records. by Paul Nixon for Findmypast.

Wednesday 21 July, 2 pm: That Scoundrel George, by Judy Russell for Legacy Family Tree Webinars.

Thursday 22 July, 6:30 pm: Finding Your Ancestor’s Five Senses:
Using Manuscript Collections to Build Context, by Maire Gurevitz for Allen Country Public Library Genealogy Center.

Friday 23 July, 9 am: In Their Own Write: The Testimony of the Victorian English and Welsh Poor, by Paul Carter for TNA.


19 – 26 September 2021: BIFHSGO Conference. Irish Lines and Female Finds: Exploring Irish records, female ancestors and genetic genealogy.

LAC Co-Lab Updates for July

Here’s a report on progress with Library and Archives Canada’s Co-Lab Challenges since last month.  One challenge reports progress and two are less complete this month than last!

Arthur Lismer’s Children’s Art Classes, new and 0% complete.

John Freemont Smith remains 89% complete.

War Diaries of the First World War: No. 2 Construction Battalion remains 99% complete.

Canadian National Land Settlement Association is 98% complete, 94% last month. That’s nine additional images of the 446 in the collection.

Molly Lamb Bobak remains 88% complete.

Diary of François-Hyacinthe Séguin remains 98% complete.

George Mully: moments in Indigenous communities 0% complete,  2% last month.

Correspondence regarding First Nations veterans returning after the First World War remains 99% complete.

Winnipeg General Strike of 1919 remains 95% complete.

Legendary Train Robber and Prison Escapee Bill Miner remains 99% complete.

Japanese-Canadians: Second World War, is 3% complete, 61% last month.

The Call to Duty: Canada’s Nursing Sisters remains 93% complete.

Projects that remain 100% complete are no longer reported here.

There’s a new more attractive presentation of the Challenges progress.

Other Co-Lab activities not part of the Challenges may have happened; seemingly we’ll never know.

Your choices are to get vaccinated or to get COVID.

Your Genealogy Today: July/August 2021

The summary by publisher Ed Zapletal in his lead column says it all.

In her the first of two articles, Drawing Them In, Sue Lisk looks at ways to get our families interested in genealogical research through a variety of strategies. In her second article, In Memoriam, Sue shares a variety of ideas for paying tribute to a loved one.

In Tuberculosis: From Maine Cornfields to California Orange Groves, Merrylyn Sawyer looks at the tuberculosis outbreak of the early 20th century in the United States.

Have you experienced difficulties researching female ancestors? Diane L. Richard offers Part 1 of her article, Our Female Ancestors Are Found in Ledgers — Part 1. Watch for Part 2 in our September/October 2021.

In No Time Like the Present: Crafting Your Memoir, Lisa Alzo says that now is the perfect time to create a legacy for future generations.

In Bastardy Bonds, David A. Norris suggests that the absence of a marriage record does not mean the children of a couple were illegitimate. He looks at some well-documented online resources for North Carolina ranging from the colonial era into the 19th century.

In Case of the Missing Grandfather, Jerry Gioglio goes on a mission to uncover the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of his grandfather who emigrated to the U.S. from Italy in the late 19th century.

In My 19th Century Relatives Were Corona Virus Precursors, Stephen L.W. Greene looks at the cholera outbreak in Ellettsville, Indiana in 1833.

In Whodunit Fiction for Genealogy Lovers, Robbie Gorr wonders if reading too many genealogical mystery books can help, or hinder, our personal genealogical research efforts.

In Tradition is a Chronic Deceiver, Donna Potter Phillips says you should never accept a family traditional story at face value.

In Bad Luck Collisions with History, Lynn Cassity looks at one man’s run of bad luck and how his family chose to memorialize him.

And don’t forget Dave Obee’s Back Page where he suggests Record Your COVID-19 Experiences for Your Family History’s Sake!

Sunday Sundries

Miscellaneous items I found of interest during the week.

Why Were Medieval Europeans So Obsessed With Long, Pointy Shoes?

Our Monstrous Archives: Memory and the End of Time

How to predict (UK) the summer weather – magic, miracle and meteorology

UK National Archives – Play Inspired by Pauper Letters

Time Team announces historic comeback

I’ll keep mentioning this as I wouldn’t want you to miss it
On Tuesday, 20 July at 8 pm Legacy Family Tree Webinars, in conjunction with The Board for Certification of Genealogists, is hosting the online presentation The Time of Cholera: A Case Study about Historical Context by Alison Hare, CG. To register, click here.

Thanks to this week’s contributors:  Anonymous, Brenda Turner, Gail Benjafield, Judith H., Ken Hanson, Nick Thorne, Unknown.

More Maps from the National Library of Scotland

Recently added, 20th-century military maps to the NLS website, including very detailed plans of defensive works in and around the Forth and Clyde estuaries, constructed before and during the First World War. These formerly classified plans were the most detailed surveys of these sites, and allow the terrain and defences to be scrutinized in minute detail.

    1. Forth military defences (1911-18)
    2. Clyde military defences (1904-18)

Also online are detailed town plans of AberdeenDundeeEdinburgh, and Glasgow, along with various special series maps. These series maps include some of the attractive and colourful Ordnance Survey Tourist Series, special Administrative District Maps of Glasgow, as well as geological and soil maps.