“Did an operation precede death”? (Ontario civil death records)

Death records often supply interesting (and occasionally rather gruesome) details about an ancestor's cause of death. And while the information found in early Ontario civil death records is a bit scanty, once we get into the twentieth century, the records become much more detailed, and therefore much more valuable to the family historian. Resist the … Continue reading “Did an operation precede death”? (Ontario civil death records)

Squatter’s rights: the Widow Cahill petitions the Crown (Part I)

The following petition is found amongst the Upper Canada Land Petitions, though it concerns a property in Lower Canada (on Calumet Island/L'Île-du-Grand-Calumet, in Pontiac County, Quebec). Honourable Sir, I humbly beg leave to state that in the year 1835 I settled as Squatter on the Calumet Island, on a lot of land which I considered … Continue reading Squatter’s rights: the Widow Cahill petitions the Crown (Part I)

Translating French Records: Catholic Burial Records

As with baptismal and marriage records, RC burial records adhered to the same formula, whether written in English or French. If you know the English-language formula, you can easily figure out the French. (And often the hardest part, as I've mentioned before, is to decipher the priest's handwriting). The formula, more or less: The [day … Continue reading Translating French Records: Catholic Burial Records

“My Maternal Ancestors,” by Alec Lunney

I am extremely grateful to Al Lunney for sending me a copy of Alec Lunney's "A Collection of Family and Ottawa Area Information," which includes his account of his maternal (and my paternal) ancestors James Moran and Margaret Jamieson. Peter Alexander ("Alec") Lunney (1896-1953) was the son of Hugh Andrew Lunney and Margaret Amelia Hourigan, … Continue reading “My Maternal Ancestors,” by Alec Lunney