Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch and the Canadiana Department of North York Central Library present
THE WOMEN IN OUR PAST:
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Gain a deeper understanding of the circumstances that governed the lives of our female ancestors. Enjoy an exciting day of learning at this workshop where we will explore new and varied approaches to researching those often elusive women in our families.
9:00 – 9:45 AM Registration and Coffee
9:45 – 11:00 AM Welcome, Introductions and Plenary Session
This session will provide strategies for searching for women in the Ancestry databases, including methods to uncover females using name variations and other search techniques. Famous or interesting women will be highlighted wherever possible using the new Ancestry databases from around the world, as well as the core record groups. The presentation will appeal to new and experienced researchers alike.
Speaker: Lesley Anderson has been involved in the personal research of her family tree for over 35 years and her passion for genealogy has branched out to teaching classes, speaking at seminars and conferences, consulting and doing research for others. She is well known for her computers and genealogy classes offered through the Catholic Board Continuing Ed and her “field trips” to various archives and libraries. She is the Director of Education for BIFHSGO and volunteers at the LDS Family History Library where she gets great enjoyment out of helping new and experienced genealogists with their research. Lesley has worked for Ancestry.ca for over 3 years now in her role as Partnership Development and Content Specialist and has done numerous presentations at branch meetings and conferences across Canada.
11:15 AM – 12:15 PM
Researching female ancestors often means searching records created by the men in their lives, in the hopes of finding elusive clues about their wives, sisters and daughters. But, even though women were not legal persons in Upper Canada, they could still be tried and convicted of a wide range of criminal offences, give evidence and testify during trials, and of course, they could be victimized by crime. This session will use a series of case studies to tell the stories of Upper Canadian women whose lives intersected with the justice system. Along the way, the audience will learn about the early history of justice in Ontario and the wide range of records researchers can use to uncover their ancestors’ stories.
Speaker: Janice Nickerson is a professional genealogist based in Toronto. She specializes in Upper Canadian research and turning bare bones genealogies into full-fledged family histories. In addition to helping her private clients learn about their family history, she also does heir searching for the Public Guardian and Trustee of Ontario, consults with Aboriginal organizations concerning Canadian Métis research issues and writes how-to articles for genealogical magazines such as Family Chronicle and Internet Genealogy. She also did much of the genealogical research “behind the scenes” for the CBC’s television series, Who Do You Think You Are?, which aired from October 2007 to February 2008. Her forthcoming book, Crime and Punishment in Upper Canada: A Researcher’s Guide, will be published in September 2010 by the OGS/Dundurn Press.
Session C: Women in the Military in the 20th Century
This presentation will explore resources and strategies for researching women who served in Canada’s military forces as Nursing Sisters in the Boer War, 1899-1902 and the First World War, 1914-1919, and their much expanded role in the Second World War, 1939-1945. While service files are the major source of information, other kinds of records will be examined and evaluated for their research value. Sources for war brides, in both world wars, will also be discussed.
Speaker: Glenn Wright was born and educated in Toronto, Ontario. Following graduation from the University of Toronto, he worked as a researcher for Pierre Berton before joining the Public Archives of Canada in 1975. Now retired, he is a frequent speaker at family history and genealogical events and has been associated with television programs such as “Who Do You Think You Are?” and “Ancestors in the Attic”. He has given numerous presentations and has published on Canadian military records, especially the First World War, Mounted Police, pre-1865 immigration sources and more. Glenn is a long-time member of the OGS (including Toronto Branch), he serves on the Ancestry.ca Advisory Board, and he is President of the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa (BIFHSGO).
12:15 PM – 1:15 PM
Lunch Break – There is a food court in the adjacent mall as well as restaurants nearby, on Yonge Street....or feel free to bring your lunch.
Session D: Lunchtime Tour of North York Central Library’s Canadiana Department
1:15 PM – 2:15 PM
Using one extended family, the Wadens, this session will discuss the challenges surrounding researching the women whose lives were shaped by the fur trade. Covering a time period of about 1760 to 1860, the surprising wealth of primary source materials available to the family historian researching the Canadian wives and the Native and Métis women taken by the fur traders as country wives will be revealed.
Speaker: Liane Kennedy is a genealogical and historical researcher based in Fenelon Falls, Ontario. She is a graduate of Trent University and Mount Royal College and has taken a number of courses through The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. While her specialty is Fur Trade kinship ties, she is passionate about exploring the historical context of events in our ancestors’ lives. She is currently writing a book on the fur trader Jean-Etienne Waden and his descendants and developing a genealogical studies unit for the homeschooling market. She is also a member of the Anne Langdon 175 Committee – working to celebrate the 175th anniversary of Anne Langdon’s arrival in Canada. Anne Langdon is best known for her book A Gentlewoman in Upper Canada, which describes the settling of the Fenelon Falls area..
Session F: Ma Owned the Farm: Women as Landowners in Ontario
In Upper Canada and early Ontario, most land was held by men and the law limited the rights of women to own property. However, some did, and the records associated with that ownership and women's rights to their husband's and parent's properties are some of the richest genealogical treasures. This session will give a general overview of land records, and deal more specifically with the transactions, documents, and terms most likely to relate to women.
Speaker: Jane E. MacNamara is a long time member of the Ontario Genealogical Society, a founding director of the Friends of the Archives of Ontario, and a member of the Society of Genealogists (London). Jane lectures about research methodology, Ontario, Scottish, 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. She leads regular trips to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City (the September 2010 trip will be her 18th) and is the organizer of Genealogy Summer Camp, an innovative program that brings out- of-town researchers to Toronto for a week of tutorials and hands-on research.
2:30 – 3:30 PM
DNA analysis is now being employed in maternal ancestry research – both in recent-generation family history research and in deep ancestry research. This session provides an overview of the topic, and of the tests available (to men and women) and the uses to which they can be put. This is an objective presentation, taking as much account of the limitations or difficulties which may attach to such tests as it does of the prospectively exciting ways in which they might be used.
Speaker: Dr. Elizabeth Kaegi became interested in genealogy a few years ago, when she started exploring the family history of her adoptive family and initiated a serious search for her birth families. Incomplete information about her biological paternity meant she had to work with “suspects” and DNA studies became an integral part of the search. Despite her training in Medicine and a Masters degree with a thesis that focused on a genetic disorder, she still found she was starting from scratch in trying to understand the possible contribution of DNA studies in unravelling genealogical mysteries, both recent and those in the more distant past. She follows new developments with interest in the hope that new techniques will provide the evidence she seeks.
Speaker: James F. S. Thomson is a University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies instructor and has designed and taught ten (mostly sold-out) advanced and expert-level family history courses co-sponsored by Toronto Branch OGS and the Toronto Public Library. His interest in DNA and deep ancestry research was first piqued by unexpected results which he obtained through participation in the National Geographic Society's ongoing Genographic Project - the possible implications of which he found and finds intriguing. He is a keen student of new developments in the field.
Session H: Four Women and Four Legacies
This session is based on the research the speaker has done on four women in his family, each of whom received a sizable inheritance when she was a young adult. The presentation will look at sources such as wills, estate files, death duty registers, property records, court records (the English Court of Chancery and the Ontario High Court of Justice) as well as family papers. We will see how these legacies affected their lives and reveal something about the world in which these women lived. The legacies also shed light on family relationships, especially when disputes arose as a result of these inheritances. The origins of the women being discussed were: the first born in Ireland about 1785, the second born in Ireland in 1823, the third born in Ontario in 1867 and the fourth born in Ontario in 1893.
Speaker: Joseph Wearing has been doing genealogy ever since he stumbled by chance on a document related to his great-great-grandfather while doing research for his doctoral thesis in the old Public Records Office in Chancery Lane in London. He has contributed to Ontario township histories and to genealogical journals in England and Ontario as well as having written books and articles on parties and elections in Canada. He is a professor emeritus of Political Studies, Trent University, Peterborough and a graduate of the universities of Western Ontario, Toronto and Oxford.
3:45 – 4:45 PM
For the most part, few women immigrated to Canada on their own prior to the 1850s. But between 1850 and 1935, Canada was in great need of farm labourers and domestics - so much so that many societies and organizations were formed to help satisfy this need. Governments also intervened and offered bonuses for immigrants in these categories. Various groups assisting women will be discussed along with the conditions the women endured and sources, where available.
Speaker: Marjorie Patricia Kohli is a graduate of the University of Waterloo, has served in various capacities for OGS, Waterloo Historical Society and the Waterloo Region Branch of OGS, and was the winner of the OGS Award of Merit in 2002. She is a frequent speaker on the subject of immigration to Canada and is the author of a number of articles and an acclaimed book on the topic: The Golden Bridge: Young Immigrants to Canada 1833-1939. She maintains a number of renowned web sites:
How to get to the workshop (map):
By public transit: North York Central Library is connected directly to the North York Centre subway station, on the Yonge line. Inter-city trains and buses link with the subway at Union, Dundas, or York Mills stations. Allow at least 35 minutes from Union or Dundas, or 15 minutes from York Mills, to get to North York Centre.
By car: North York Central Library is at 5120 Yonge Street, Toronto, M2N 5N9, on the west side at Park Home Avenue (about halfway between Sheppard and Finch). From Highway 401, exit northbound at Yonge Street; proceed north to Park Home Avenue (6th or 7th traffic light) and turn left. The most convenient parking ($5 per day on Saturdays) is under the building—enter from Novotel on Park Home, or from Beecroft Road (parallel and west of Yonge Street).
The Novotel North York is part of the North York Centre complex.
Limited Space Available, Register Today
© Toronto Branch, Ontario Genealogical Society. Last Updated August 2011