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Aug
18
Tue
Late Summer Lecture Series: Online
Aug 18 @ 7:30 pm – Aug 26 @ 9:00 pm
Late Summer Lecture Series: Online @ FOUR 1-HOUR WEBINARS | Toronto | Ontario | Canada

Join us on four evenings in August from the comfort of your home for the online Late Summer Lecture Series. Four expert researchers will guide you through specialized records or research processes. Attend all four or pick the sessions that suit you.

Each session will begin at 7:30 p.m and will consist of an hour-long presentation and opportunity to ask questions. For those who can’t attend the live session, a closed-captioned recording will be available to registrants until September 15.

The first webinar will be free to everyone. All subsequent sessions will be $8 each for OGS members and $10 for non-members. Or register for the Full Series for only $20 (OGS members) or $25 (non-members).


FULL SERIES
Includes access to all four lectures:
August 18: Ontario Records on FamilySearch
August 19: Upper Canada Sundries: An Under-used Genealogical Goldmine
August 25: The Heir & Devisee Commissions of Upper Canada
August 26: Enhancing your Research with Find a Grave
$20 OGS members/ $25 non-members
REGISTER FOR THE FULL SERIES NOW


August 18: Ontario Records on FamilySearch — Jane E. MacNamara

FamilySearch has been collecting and capturing record images in Ontario for many decades. The organization was instrumental in preserving records in land registry offices, municipal building basements, courthouses, churches and cemeteries all over the province. Every one of those records is listed in the Family History Library Catalogue, many are digitized, and some are indexed so you can search by name. And they are all free. This lecture will show you how to find records, and provide tips on how to use them—sometimes done best in conjunction with indexes and resources at other sites.

Jane E. MacNamara, Toronto, is the author of Inheritance in Ontario: Wills and other Records for Family Historians (OGS/Dundurn) and writes about genealogy at wherethestorytakesme.ca. A long time member of OGS, Jane lectures about research methodology, Ontario, and English family history to genealogical and historical groups throughout southern Ontario. She teaches courses for the OGS Toronto Branch, most notably hands-on courses about Ontario records.

Free
REGISTER FOR AUGUST 18 LECTURE NOW


August 19: Upper Canada Sundries: An Under-used Genealogy Goldmine— Janice Nickerson

Where can you find whole communities begging for mercy for convicted horse thieves, neighbours informing on one another’s treasonous activities during the Rebellion of 1837, people applying for civil service jobs, widows asking for militia pensions, huge lists of aliens resident in Upper Canada and a whole lot more? In the Upper Canada Sundries. Come learn about this recently digitized little-known treasure trove of genealogical and biographical information about early residents of Ontario.

Janice Nickerson is a professional genealogist based in Toronto. Her parents, grandparents, and great grandparents all lived their entire lives in Ontario (except for a few months in the United States). Janice’s expertise includes Ontario history, criminal justice records, and turning bare bones genealogies into shareable family stories. In addition to helping her private clients discover their family stories, Janice does heir searching for the Public Guardian and Trustee of Ontario, writes and lectures on genealogical topics. Her books, Crime and Punishment in Upper Canada: A Researcher’s Guide (2010) and York’s Sacrifice: Militia Casualties of the War of 1812 (2012) were both published by the joint imprint of the Ontario Genealogical Society and Dundurn Press.

$8 OGS members/ $10 non-members
REGISTER FOR AUGUST 19 LECTURE NOW


August 25: The Heir & Devisee Commissions of Upper Canada— Linda Corupe

Heir and Devisee Commissions were established in Upper Canada in order to hear claims for original (or patent) deeds for lots to which the rights had been previously granted. Although the government had hoped that by the end of the first commission in 1803 or 1804 (depending on the district), the situation would be resolved, there were still hundreds of deeds that had not issued or been applied for by that time. Therefore, a second commission had to be set up, starting in 1805, and running right up to 1895. The related records have, as a general rule, survived, and constitute an invaluable resource, containing information on the earliest settlers who occupied or owned the rights to the lots in the years before that first deed was issued, something that might not be available through any other source.

Linda Corupe has been researching family history for over 40 years. She started out with her own family, United Empire Loyalists from the Quinte area of Ontario, but as her interest and familiarity with genealogical resources grew, she began to self publish books. At first, they were usually transcriptions of census or vital statistics, but now she has expanded to include other records such as court registers, heir and devisee claims, and bastardy oaths. Linda is a graduate of McMaster University, and a member of the Ontario Genealogical Society and the United Empire Loyalist Association of Canada. One of her favourite places to be is at the Archives of Ontario, where she has spent countless hours over several years, working for both herself and clients.

$8 OGS members/ $10 non-members
REGISTER FOR AUGUST 25 LECTURE NOW


August 26: Enhancing your Research with Find a Grave—Ruth Burkholder

Yes, it is lots of fun to go to a cemetery and take pictures of your family memorials, but much more fun to add them to a website that lets you build your family tree, one person at a time along with obits and other photos. Let’s build a “tree” together! We’ll also look at how you can find and verify what others have contributed, and where that information can take you.

Ruth Burkholder, the daughter of British immigrants, was born and raised in Toronto. She married into a Pennsylvania-German farming family. The challenges faced in finding the records of these two diverse family histories have led her to an understanding and appreciation for the many different sources available for finding information. For the past 35 years, Ruth has worked as an historian and genealogist. She lectures, teaches, and works professionally as a researcher of local and family histories. Living just outside Toronto, she feels that she has the best of both rural and urban worlds.

$8 OGS members/ $10 non-members
REGISTER FOR AUGUST 26 LECTURE NOW

Sep
16
Wed
Understanding Ontario Land Registry Records
Sep 16 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Understanding Ontario Land Registry Records @ THREE-SESSION ONLINE COURSE | Toronto | Ontario | Canada

Three-session online course: September 16, 23, 30.
$30 OGS members / $35 non-members

Despite the impending closure of Land Registry Offices, Ontario land registry records are becoming more available than ever before—particularly for researchers at a distance. For those new to these records, words like lot, concession, plan, abstract index, and instrument can be confusing. But they are also crucial to locating a parcel of land and the records of ownership. This three-session course will focus on helping you understand how land is divided and identified in Ontario both historically and today.

The course will demonstrate sources to help you find your ancestor’s property description and then locate it on a map. We’ll also look at how you can use the property description to find the records of purchases and other transactions using OnLand.ca, FamilySearch.org, microfilmed records at the Archives of Ontario, and original records deposited at local archives. While Crown Land records and Land Titles will be covered briefly, the emphasis will be on Land Registry records.

There will be homework! Please plan on time between classes for a little online reading and to check out some suggested websites. Each session, including discussion, will be recorded and archived for a limited time, but for the most benefit, please try to participate in the live Zoom session. Registration is limited.


Jane E. MacNamara, Toronto, is the author of Inheritance in Ontario: Wills and other Records for Family Historians (OGS/Dundurn) and writes about genealogy at wherethestorytakesme.ca. A long time member of OGS, Jane lectures about research methodology, Ontario, and English family history to genealogical and historical groups throughout southern Ontario. She teaches courses for Toronto Branch OGS, most notably hands-on courses about Ontario records.

Sep
28
Mon
Debt, Drunk & Disorderly: Ontario Jail Records
Sep 28 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Debt, Drunk & Disorderly: Ontario Jail Records @ WEBINAR | Toronto | Ontario | Canada
Debt, Drunk & Disorderly, Vagrancy, Prostitution, Theft, Assault, Insanity: Are You Sure Your Ancestors Were Never in Jail?
No one wants a criminal at the dinner table, but finding one in your family tree can add pizzazz to an otherwise boring list of names and dates! Did you know that 19th Century Ontario jails were also full of people who just couldn’t pay their debts? Or got caught in public drinking too much? Or got in one too many fights? Did you know that most people spent only a few days in jail? Or that Irish people were overrepresented? Or that women were most often incarcerated for “moral” offences? Or that jail records are one of the few types of 19th Century records that provide physical descriptions? This lecture will introduce you to wonder of jail records, and what they can tell you about your ancestors.
Janice Nickerson is a professional genealogist based in Toronto. Her expertise includes Upper Canadian history, criminal justice records, turning bare bones genealogies into shareable family stories, and using genealogy gifts and games to create a legacy. In addition to helping her private clients discover the richness of their ancestral heritage, Janice does heir searching for provincial Public Trustees, writes and lectures on a variety of genealogical topics. Her books, Crime and Punishment in Upper Canada: A Researcher’s Guide (2010), and York’s Sacrifice: Militia Casualties of the War of 1812 (2012) were both published by the joint imprint of the Ontario Genealogical Society and Dundurn Press.
Janice is a proud 8th-generation Canadian, with English, German, Irish, Welsh and Aboriginal ancestry.
Oct
26
Mon
Researching Imperial Soldiers
Oct 26 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Researching Imperial Soldiers @ WEBINAR | Toronto | Ontario | Canada

Researching Imperial Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the First World War

When the First World War broke out in August 1914, Canada was immediately involved as a Dominion of the British Empire. Tracing the history of Canadians in the war can be a fairly simple matter if your ancestor joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force as a solider. Those files have been scanned and are available online. But the men and women who went to war, many of whom were born in the UK, saw themselves as members of the Empire and may have gone into service with an arm of the British forces, especially the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Naval Air Service, which were the only options for would-be pilots at the time. Tracing the history of Imperial military ancestors can be more challenging but also more rewarding. This talk will look at the different paths Canadians could take in an Imperial military career and how to trace them in the archives.

David Fuller is a historian and former journalist who has been researching the stories of soldiers, sailors, and airmen for many years. He is editor of The Maple Leaf, the magazine of the Central Ontario Branch of the Western Front Association, the UK’s foremost organization of First World War enthusiasts.

Nov
23
Mon
Great Moments in Genealogy
Nov 23 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Great Moments in Genealogy @ WEBINAR | Toronto | Ontario | Canada

In keeping with tradition, a number Toronto Branch members will be sharing “great moments” in their family history research in a series of short presentations. This year because of the global pandemic we are reaching out to our more distant members to share their great moments. It should be a blockbuster of an evening!

Keep an eye here for updates in the coming months.