Thursday, 26 January 2012

Provincial Archives - Ontario


Once you are on the home page, click on the link on the left side of the page that says "Getting Started" This will take you to the searchable databases. These databases include immigration records (the Toronto Assisted Immigration Records), Vital Statistics, Land Grants, Student-Teacher records, Santorium records, criminal justice records, Divorce records, Coroners reports and more. The records are not digitized. They are all on microfilm which needs to be ordered. The microfilm is available on the inter-library loan system.

The Ontario Archives are located at
134 Ian Macdonald Blvd
Toronto ON
M7A 2C5
phone: 416-327-1999

Happy Searching!

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Provincial Archives - Western Provinces

Carrying on from last week's post on Archives of the Maritime Provinces, we look at the Archives for the provinces to the West. Interestingly, these archives don't seem to be nearly as up to date in terms of being able to access digitised or even transcribed records online. Here's what is on offer:


This a particularly difficult site to navigate. I will provide you with a quick link to make your search less onerous and more productive than mine was.  Here is the direct link that will get you there immediately: The search fields are fairly straight forward. You can choose whether you want to search for a birth, marriage or death. Enter the surname field and if you choose, narrow the search by adding information into the Given Name, City and Year. Hit search and results will follow. When you get to the index (the list of "matches") click on the box to the right that says Detail View. This opens a new page with a raft of very good information. It is essentially a transcription and provides Last name, first name, date of birth, place of birth, name of hospital, duration of pregnancy in weeks, names and addresses of the parents, including mother's maiden name, marital status and the number of years the couple were married, number of live births and number of still births born to this mother. If you wanted to order the actual document, you could return to the index page and click on "add to cart". You need to return to the first search page, and scroll down to the bottom to access your cart and then to check out. Records cost $12 to order.

The Archives are located at

130-200 Vaughan St
Winnipeg, MB R3C 1T5
phone: 204-945-3971


Again, finding the search page is quite difficult. You can do a free search by visiting From this page, check the list on the left. Click on Genealogy. A new page opens. Click the line at the top that says Genealogy Index Searches. This will take you to a page similar to the page in Manitoba where you can enter details in the search fields. Surname, first name, place and year. Click search. An index will come up with the registration number, surname, first name,sex, date of birth, name of parents. If you want the actual document, you can order it by clicking the line that says add to the application form. This is the same idea as ordering through a "cart." You can view the items you have "ordered" by clicking the link at the top of the page. Mind bogglingly enough, a document costs $50. Hopefully it is gold-leafed and framed for that price.
The Archives are located at

3303 Hillsdale Street
Regina SK
Mailing address:
Saskatchewan Archives Board

P.O. Box 1665
Regina, SK, S4P 3C6
Phone: 306-787-4068
E-mail: is submitted through a special form on the website under "Contact Us"


From this homepage, you can click on the button along the top that says "genealogists" and looks like an ahnentafel chart. Once on the genealogy page, you can perform a homestead search, a search of photographs, and faith organisations to see what church records are held at the archives. At the bottom of the page, you can click on Learn More About Genealogical Sources. This opens a new page with a number of quick links. The quick link for the vital statistics is:
This site does not allow online searches. You must send away for the information. The documents are $39.64
The Archives are located at:
8555 Roper Road
Edmonton, Alberta
T6E 5W1
Phone: (780) 427-1750

This is by far the easiest of the western provincial archives websites to navigate. Once on the home page, you can click on "genealogy" at the top of the page. On the new page that opens, there are pictures across the top and just below them is a link that says "search" On the next page, at the bottom of the first box (that asks what records you want to search in), click on the line that says "expand list of genealogy indexes" This will take you to the search box for the vital statistics. You can then choose from births (1872-1903), marriages (1872-1936), colonial marriages (1859-1872), deaths (1872-1991) and baptisms (1836-1888). Or you can choose all genealogy indexes. The right side of the screen contains a box with the search fields - surname, given name, place and year. The search results page will give you the name, date, place and registration number of the event. You can order the documents on microfilm.
The Archives are located at
BC Archives
675 Belleville Street

Victoria BC V8W 9W2
Phone: 250-387-1952

Happy Searching!

Friday, 20 January 2012

Genealogy Toolbar

Genealogy inTime Magazine (an e-zine) has a genealogy toolbar that can be downloaded for free. The toolbar has quick links to Genealogy in Time Magazine, their own genealogy search engine, a list of new genealogy records and genealogy resources (FamilySearch, CollectionsCanada, US & UK Archives, Genealogy Twitter feeds, Genealogy blogs, the top 100 genealogy websites). There is also a quick link to your gmail account (a number will appear when you have mail in your inbox) and a scrolling list of genealogy blogs. This particular quick link is a great way to see what is new in the world of genealogy and what other researchers are able to help you with in your quest to find your ancestors.
The toolbar is not only free, it is incredibly useful!

Happy Searching!

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Peace Tickets

Inside the 1937 Eaton's Catalogue were a package of five tickets to a Peace Variety Show. We are unsure if the tickets actually came with the catalogue or if the previous owner of the catalogue had simply placed them there for safe-keeping. A family of five could take in the variety show for a dollar.

The directions are to "pin a dollar to the stubs and return" It then says "We guarantee the safe delivery of your money"  This was a fundraiser for the Royal Canadian Legion - specifically for Branch 103 of Campbellford.

The top prizes in the draw were a Desoto Airstream Sedan, a Chev Sedan and a Ford Coupe. Second prizes were trips to Vimy Ridge (a pilgrammage). Third prizes were all-wave radios. In the fine print it reads that the three cars, 15 trips and thirty radios were only for the holders of the first 48 tickets drawn by the President of the Legion Branch.  Members of Branch 103 were not eligible for the prizes. If nothing else, the ticket was also an entry ticket to the Variety Show itself.  

1937 Eaton's Catalogue

My husband is a pack rat. A trait I was unaware of until we married. My mother threw out everything - or gave things away. Not so my husband. He saves everything. Fortunately he is also a tad OCD, so is well organized and there is no clutter.
This afternoon, he was looking for something - and came across a box. He wasn't really sure what was in there, but thought he would have look anyway. Lo and behold, he found a 1937 Eaton's Catalogue. It was the fall and winter edition. We had a great time looking through the catalogue. Hard to believe, really how much times have changed.

Girls today spend hours on their hair. And a small fortune to boot. Did it really used to be as simple as a silver brush set in front of a vanity and mirror? Interestingly, these sets were some of the more expensive items in the catalogue. Almost as expensive as fur coats, so maybe spending a fortune on hair hasn't really changed at all.

And what handbag was complete without a compact?

At these prices, parents could actually afford to supply both indoor and outdoor shoes for their kids for school!

The toy section provided the most drastic changes. No technology required. Just a whole bunch of imagination. I'm sure this little fella thought he was Gene Autry or even the Lone Ranger. This toy was both amusing and safe!

And for those blustery winter days, a ski flyer. Two and a half feet of  fun for $1.59 or almost four feet of fun for only 80 cents more!

Unlike today's dolls that leave nothing to the imagination, this beauty, specially chosen by Her Majesty the Queen, was a bargain at only .95¢ She even comes with a certificate of authenticity. She doesn't look very cuddly, though, does she?

For the next time Wikipedia goes black, why not turn to this Indispensible Modern Reference Book set. A complete set of 8 contains all the knowledge in the world. How did we cope when we weren't as smart as we are today? I actually remember the excitement every grocery day when we could get the next volume of Funk & Wagnalls for only .49¢ at Dominion. We could never have afforded Britannica but Funk & Wagnalls was perfectly priced for our family.

This one really tickled my fancy. A complete set of home decorations for Christmas. All for only .79¢ The collection is even multi purpose. It can be used on a tree with or without lights!

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Provincial Archives - Maritime Provinces

Most researchers in Ontario are aware of the vast amount of information available through the Ontario Archives. What they may not be aware of is that other provinces also have Archives with large amounts of information and documentation that can be accessed from anywhere. Here are the web addresses for the provincial archives in the maritime provinces:

 Prince Edward Island:

Once you get to the home page, click the "online databases" on the left hand column. Here you will transcriptions of Baptisms, Census records and the Petition Index. Many of the petitions are for land, but others are for money, equipment, repairs and other essentials of the time.

Through the archives,  you can purchase a copy of the original document and you can seek other documents which have not yet be transcribed, such as court papers, wills, journals, newspaper clippings and more. You can contact the archives by telephone at (902) 368 - 4290 or my e-mail at

New Brunswick:

Once you get to the home page, there is a green toolbar at the top of the page. Click on "Search" at the far left side. From here you can search births, marriages, deaths including some funeral home records, deaths of soldiers and burial permits. Other searches can be conducted on cemeteries, immigration (including the irish who emigrated to escape the famine), passenger lists, land registers, teachers licences and Justice of the Peace appointments. You can contact the archives by telephone at (506) 453 - 2122 or by e-mail at:


This system is a bit more complex. Once you are at the home page, there are instructions on the page as to how to search. You will then see a list of fonds (collections held by the Archives) including a number of Royal Commission reports as well as Marine Court records. None of the records are actually digitized and need to be ordered from the Archives. A better source of genealogical information for Newfoundland is the Newfoundland and Grand Banks website:  Here you can access message boards, cemetery transcriptions, directories, census records, BMD records, passenger lists, newspapers, wills, voters lists, parish records, marine and other provincial disasters and more.

Nova Scotia  Once you are at the home page, go to the left side of the page and click on "genealogy research" From here, you will be taken to a search box. Enter in the name of your ancestor and a new page opens. You need to read and agree to the Terms & Conditions and then you will be taken to the results. You can view a micro version of the record. Even enlarged, it is still pretty small. A copy of the record can be ordered for $10.25 for vital stats records (BMD). Back on the search page, scroll down to see the highlighted line that says "online databases and resources" Click on this link and you will be taken to the other records available. These include Acadian records, African-NovaScotian records, church records, divorce records, death registers, land petitions, medical examiner records (autopsy), marriage bonds, poll tax rolls and Mi'kmaq records. Most of these records are not digitized. Some are transcribed. Others simply give you the index of where the records can be found. You can contact the archives by phone at (902) 424-6060 or by e-mail at

As always, happy Searching!

Friday, 13 January 2012

New at Library and Archives Canada

Collections Canada, the website for Library and Archives Canada now has a fully searchable index of the  Upper Canada Land Grants 1763-1875 These are in addition to the indexes for the Lower Canada Land Grants and the Western Canada Land Grants. The microfilm need to be ordered from Library and Archives Canada and can be shipped to your local library through the Inter Library Loan System.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Copies of Original Church Records in Our Genealogy Library

We have copies of original church documents in our library. The indexes are readily available, but don’t stop your search there. ASK one of our volunteers if you can see the copy of the original document, and they will be happy to get it from the archive room for you.
 We have copies of original baptism and marriage records from many of the churches in Brantford and Brant County.