Courtesy of Toronto Public Library
Every family historian appreciates the value of maps – they help us not only to pinpoint where our ancestors lived, but to understand their physical surroundings, local landmarks and topography, travel and migration routes, changing administrative boundaries and much more. Many of us have likely already relied on printed modern and historical maps to further our research. But, in this day and age, we don’t need to limit ourselves to static maps created by others!
In November, Toronto Branch will be offering a four-week evening course at the Toronto Reference Library titled “Maps and Mapping for 21st Century Genealogists“, designed for intermediate and advanced-level researchers. Our experienced instructor James F.S. Thomson will explore creative new ways in which family historians can make use of maps, including specialized tools that allow the integration of maps, plans and data from different sources.
To find out more and to register on-line, visit our Courses page. Spaces are limited, so don’t wait too long to sign up!
It was a lovely summer evening on Wednesday August 6th but more than a hundred people chose to spend it indoors – at the City of Toronto Archives – and they weren’t disappointed! Author, historian and university professor Craig Heron drew a full house for the fourth annual Toronto History Lecture, co-sponsored by the Archives and Toronto Branch, and titled “The Workers’ City: Lives of Toronto’s Working People”.
Photo courtesy of Jane E. MacNamara
Professor Heron invited his audience to walk in the shoes – or boots, in some cases – of eight different workers from Toronto’s past and present. He introduced us to a 19th-century distillery worker, a print worker, a pieceworker in the garment trade, an immigrant construction worker, a public servant, a health-care worker, a young retail sales clerk and an elderly woman with a long history of unpaid work at home. We learned about the financial, physical and social challenges they faced, and the impact labour movements of the day had on their lives.
The Toronto History Lecture was inaugurated in 2011 in memory of well-known local and family historian Paul McGrath, and this year’s event was dedicated to the memory of J. Brian Gilchrist, one of the country’s leading genealogists, who passed away earlier in 2014. Previous Toronto History Lecturers have included Chris Raible, Janice Nickerson and Guylaine Pétrin.
To find out more about this annual event, visit our Toronto History Lecture page. And if you’d like us to keep you informed of Branch news, click here or on the By Email link at the top right of your screen to subscribe to our updates.