23 February 2014

Ottawa Branch Library: 2013 year in review and latest additions for 2014

---from our Librarian, Grace Lewis

2013 was an active year for the Ottawa Branch OGS Library. We added over 300 new titles to our collection. We were fortunate to receive donations from several people, including Robert Campbell, Dorothy Relyea, Don Pounder and Wade and Maureen Lennox. Those volumes that were donated but did not fit with our collection policy were still valuable to us. If appropriate, we shared them with our BIFHSGO and UEL colleagues or sold them at our Library table during our monthly OBOGS meetings for members for a nominal donation. Some we also sold to dealers. The money raised in this manner was used to purchase more relevant material for our collection or to off-set the cost of supplies.

2014 promises to be just as busy and we have already logged the following books to the library:
  • A Thousand Kin: The Bolgers of Shamrock, Ontario which was donated to us by the BIFHSGO library as it did not fit their collection as readily as it did ours.

    This indexed family history covers seven generations of Bolgers that have lived in North America, stemming from one set of Irish parents, native to County Wexford, Ireland and who had been transplanted to Renfrew County, Ontario.

  • The Ottawa Sharpshooters: The Story of the Company and the men who served during the North West Rebellion, incorporating the Diary of Captain A. Hamlyn Todd
    In late March 1885, in reaction to proclamation of a Provisional Government by Louis Riel, thousands of volunteer militia soldiers set off for North West Canada to suppress the rebellion. This is the story of the Ottawa Company of Sharpshooters and the 53 men who served in the Company.

    The story of the Company's service during 1885 is told. Then, through original research, the diverse and sometimes strange histories of the men who served are revealed. You will encounter Canada's most famous racehorse, Northern Dancer; Impersonator Rich Little; Alice in Wonderland; a Senator who fell out of a train and much more.

    Transcripts of letters by Sharpshooter Herbert M. Jarvis and the Field Diary of Captain A. Hamlyn Todd, never before published, complete the picture.

    This tribute was researched, compiled and published by members of the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa from local sources supplemented with information from Sharpshooter descendants and relatives. It honours the Company and the men on the 120th anniversary of the Rebellion.

  • To be continued…
    The Historical Society of Ottawa was formed in 1898 and is thought to be the oldest such group in Ottawa. The contents of this signed book includes: A Good Beginning; A New Home; A Broader, Stronger Society; Doing the Colonel Proud; A remarkable Milestone; and A Society at the Crossroads.

As well, we purchased eight CDs:
  1. A Rideau Jaunt in 1872 or a Sketch of the Rideau Navigation from Ottawa to Kingston, Ontario
    On a July Thursday in 1872, William Mills, a Civil Servant took a couple of days off work to make a jaunt down the Rideau Canal from his home city of Ottawa to the busy St. Lawrence port of Kingston. He took his note book with him so that he could record the memorable events and sights of his journey, much in the manner that we would take a camera with us today. The resulting book is extremely interesting.

  2. Hudson Bay: or Everyday life in the Wilds of North America
    Here is a narrative of firsthand experience in the service of the Hudson Bay Company during the 1840s.

  3. History of the Ottawa Valley (first published in 1986 by J.L. Gourlay)
    Sub titled "A collection of facts, events and reminiscences for over half a century" this rare book is actually two separate and distinct books within one cover. The second book is titled “The difficulties of religion.

  4. Ottawa & Kingston City Directory – 1875
    Far more than just the cities of Ottawa and Kingston, this directory covers most of the (in 1875) significant communities in Ontario lying North and East of Kingston, including Almonte, Arnprior, Barriefield, Brockville, Bryson, Carleton Place, Cornwall, Edwardsburg (now Cardinal?), Gananoque, Garden Island (Nr. Wolf Isl.), Iroquois, Kemptville, Kingston, Landsdowne (now Lansdowne), Lyn, Mallorytown, Merrickville, Morrisburg, New Edinburgh (now part of Ottawa), Ottawa, Pakenham, Pembroke, Perth, Portsmouth (now part of Kingston), Prescott, Renfrew, Richmond, Rochesterville (was part of Nepean Township), Sand Point, Smith's Falls, Westport, & Wolf Island. Also included are the Quebec communities lying along the North shore of the Ottawa River including Aylmer, Buckingham, Gatineau Point, Hull, Peche, Portage du Fort, & Shawville.

  5. The Gazetteer & Classified Business Directory of Canada including Newfoundland – 1930
    This is a wonderful book with a truly misleading title. Of the almost 2000 pages in this book the gazetteer takes up 70 while the rest are devoted to a wonderfully complete directory of Canadian businesses and professional people and their advertising. This is a great resource in a country where early directories are so scarce. Both the gazetteer and the Business Directory are indexed by Province but the Business Directory is also sub-indexed by trade or profession.

  6. The Might Directory of Ottawa, Hull and 7 Suburbs – 1926
    A very complete and useful directory of Ottawa and Hull for 1926 (which was the year Ottawa celebrated its centennial) and also including the (then) outlying districts.

  7. The Ottawa City Directory – 1909
    A very complete and useful directory of Ottawa and Hull for 1909, including the (then) outlying districts of OTTAWA including Billings Bridge; Eastview (Old Cummings Bridge, Janeville [Vanier] & Clarkstown); Mechanicsville; and Rockliffe Park.

    The directory gives an alphabetical list of all business firms and private citizens.

  8. Ottawa City Directory 1861-1862
    Here is an early directory of Ottawa/Bytown published by Boyd & McDonald. It advertises itself as containing, "..the names and residence of the Citizens; also, a subscribers Business Directory, classified according to trade." Examination seems to indicate that it also contains the names and addresses of business who were not "subscribers."

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