29 December 2015

Ottawa DNA Group

The BIFHSGO DNA Interest Group will start the new year with a new schedule. At our last meeting it was obvious that we had grown too big for the room we have been using at 100 Tallwood Drive. Both Rooms 226 and 228 were too too small. We are therefore moving our 2016 meetings to Room 115, on the main floor of 100 Tallwood Drive. They will remain on Saturdays, commencing at 9:30 am. We are also increasing the frequency of our meetings, and I have tried to schedule them so as not to conflict with OGS and BIFHSGO monthly meetings. Here are the 2016 dates: February 6th, April 2nd, July 2nd, August 6th and October 1st.

Facebook Page

As the snow deepens, I just wanted to remind all about the Ottawa Branch OGS Facebook page at


Many of the other OGS branches and SIGs also have Facebook pages. The Society page is at https://www.facebook.com/groups/ontgensoc/

and the files area includes a PDF listing all the other Society Facebook Groups and Pages

16 December 2015

Saturday 19 Dec

It's a busy day for Ottawa Branch. Check out the details of all the meetings on our website:


Still plenty of space at the pot luck. Let Heather know what you are bringing at  ottawavolunteer1@ogs.on.ca or show up with your goodies.


21 October 2015

Ottawa Branch Memorial Lecture - Saturday 24 October

The annual Ottawa Branch Memorial Lecture on Saturday 24 October at 1pm will feature Dr Bruce Elliott speaking on `Some Early Ottawa Gravestone Makers'.
Gravestones are an important source of genealogical information but they also have their own history.  Initially craft products that reflected locally available materials, traditional skills, and local, regional, or cultural stylistic and symbolic traditions, gravestones increasingly became modern, standardized and mass produced industrial products through the course of the 19th century.  Canada became part of a North American consumer marketplace in which materials, designs, and eventually monuments themselves originated outside the locality, produced at a few centralized quarry sites and wholesaled to local monument makers who added the inscriptions and became more retailers than craftsmen.  This presentation looks at the work of some of Ottawa's early gravestone makers in the context of this transition from craft to industry.
The presentation will be held in the City of Ottawa Archives at 100 Tallwood Drive. Social time runs from 1pm to 1:30 when the session will start. All are welcome and there is no charge for admission.

Note that this presentation will NOT be webcast.

02 October 2015

Ottawa TMG Users Group

The next meeting of the Ottawa TMG Users Group is Saturday 3 October. Please visit our web site for details and information on webcasting of the meetinghttp://ottawa-tmg-ug.ca/ 

23 September 2015

Citing Genealogical Sources Correctly: Why It’s Crucial to Your Research

Here is a great article from Crestleaf on the importance of correctly citing your sources! Read on...

Your Family History May Be Incorrect, And Here’s Why

Tips for Citing Genealogical Sources Correctly
Photo Credit: jasonpearce via Compfight cc
Researching your family history can be quite the eye-opening and rewarding experience. And it isn’t for the faint of heart, either! Whether you’re new to genealogy research or a seasoned family historian, you know how much time and dedication is needed to uncover the hidden mysteries of your family and fill in the branches of your family tree.
But if someone were to ask you where you found each piece of your thoughtfully-researched information, would you be able to tell them?
If you find yourself stumbling over your answer, then you might have missed a crucial step to your genealogy research: citing genealogical sources. Citing sources is important for not only verifying that genealogical information is correct, but for other situations you’ll come across down the road.

Genealogy Source Citations: What Are They?

To put it simply, a source citation is a reminder of where you found a piece of genealogical information.
While the genealogical research process involves the collection of records (the source) to draw conclusions, the citation is the link that connects a record to the conclusion you’ve made and added to your family’s history. In other words, an accurate citation makes your information more credible.

Why It’s Crucial to Cite Genealogical Sources Correctly

1.) It Will Help You Locate Information Quickly

Sometimes we get so excited about our genealogical findings that we add the fascinating facts to our family trees but forget to add citations. And if you’re a seasoned researcher, this likely happened to you during your early research days. But would you make the same mistake again?
Of course you wouldn’t, because you know how important this step is when you have to go back and find sources later.
This is especially crucial when you find conflicting information in your research. So, even if your Cousin Larry provides you with your great-grandfather’s birth information and not an actual birth certificate, record that Larry is the source of those facts. Then, if you find conflicting records later, you can go back and see that Larry may have given you some invalid information that you’ll have to adjust. Perhaps Larry even has the actual birth certificate on hand!

2.) It Makes it Easier to Evaluate Information Quality

While you gather your source information from marriage certificates, land records, obituaries, newspaper clippingsoral history interviews and everything in between, accurate citations should be made to ensure high-quality information is recorded.
Accurate evidence is crucial when it comes to your family history and genealogy research because if you make one mistake, it can end up costing you some valuable time later. And while quite a few researchers think that listing a source as “birth certificate” or “census record” is enough, a correct citation won’t require you or other genealogists to go back and find missing information in the future.

3.) It Will Provide Future Generations with Organized Research

Leaving a thoughtfully-organized roadmap of your genealogical research for future generations to discover and expand upon should be in the back of your mind each time you find a new piece of information.
Citing your sources correctly will provide accuracy for your younger family members and future genealogists. And just as they help you with your research, the citations will allow these family members to go back and re-trace your steps quicker and easier so they can verify or disprove your own conclusions, plus add more information to your family tree. You’ll also be a stellar example of good genealogy research habits that beginning genealogists will want to emulate!

4.) Your Family Will Finally Take Your Research Seriously

Do you truly want to get your family involved with your genealogy and family history projects? Organizing your research can help your cause — and citing your sources is just the beginning. In fact, there are many ways you can organize those piles of records, newspapers and family photos.
Plus, once your family sees the shining genealogy star you really are and they decide to get on board, your family history will inch closer and closer to not only being complete — but accurate! And who knows what else you might do. Perhaps you’ll publish your family history with accurate citations and be taken seriously in the professional genealogical world, too.

Tips for Beginners: How to Cite Genealogical Sources

As you can see, accurately recording full citation data from a source as soon as you find a piece of information is an essential part of the research process.
The following tips will help ensure that you’re citing your genealogical sources correctly the first time.  
  • Get in the habit of writing down what you’ve found as soon as you find it.
While you’re conducting research, always make it a point to write down what record was used to find information. If you do this, you’ll always have each source on hand once you write a formal research document and can add it to your family tree later.
Use this citation formula for sources found offline: 
  • The name of the record source
  • The page number and publication date (if a book was the source)
  • The volume, catalog or identification number (if the source isn’t a book)
  • The location where you found the source
  • The type of source (especially useful when citing family heirlooms or gravestones)
  • Who the source belongs to (useful when the source is owned by a private owner)
Use this citation formula for sources found online: 
  • The name of the website where you found the information
  • The URL of the website
  • The date you accessed the website
  • The name of the source
  • The page number (if an online publication)
  • The original publication date
And don’t stress if the website or online publication is taken down later. It will more than likely exist offline somewhere, and having this information on hand can help you find the offline source, too.

This entry was posted in Family TreeGenealogy 101Genealogy Tips and tagged  on September 9, 2015 by 

06 September 2015

Ottawa Branch September Presentation

The end of summer is approaching (although not obvious by the current heat wave in Ottawa) and the Ottawa Branch program kicks off on Saturday 12 September at The City of Ottawa Archives, 100 Tallwood Drive (Room 115):
10:30am – 12:00 Genealogy: Back to Basics - Getting Started: a short lecture, followed by a Question and Answer session with Ottawa Branch members. If you are new to family history research or need a refresher, come out and join us! *Coffee and tea will be available throughout the morning.

1:00-1:30: Networking & Refreshments
1:30-3:00: Abandoned Cemeteries in Rideau Lakes
Join us for our first monthly presentation following summer holidays! This month Neil Patterson will be discussing forgotten and abandoned cemeteries in the Rideau Lakes area.
This meeting will be simulcast for members who can't join us in person.
To access the meeting, go to:http://genealogicalstudies.adobeconnect.com/ottawaogs/

3:00pm: Computer Special Interest Group

01 September 2015

Taverns & Troublemakers

The City of Ottawa Archives invites visitors to drink in the history of Ottawa’s taverns and explore the battle with the Temperance Movement, the troublemakers who had a different plan for society.
Please join us for the opening reception: Thursday, October 1 from 6:30 - 8:30. RSVP:  Archives@ottawa.ca

Tavernes et rabat-joie
Les Archives de la Ville d’Ottawa invitent les visiteurs à venir savourer l’histoire des tavernes d’Ottawa et découvrir le combat engagé avec les membres du mouvement de tempérance, ces fauteurs de troubles qui avaient un projet différent pour la société.
Au plaisir de vous voir à la réception d’ouverture: le jeudi 1 octobre de 18 h 30 à 20 h 30. RSVP : Archives@ottawa.ca

10 August 2015

Genealogy Back to Basics

Ottawa Branch OGS offers a genealogical education session prior to the monthly presentation. Genealogy: Back To Basics includes a short (30-45 minute) lecture on a genealogical topic, followed by a Question and Answer session with Ottawa Branch members. If you are new to family history research or need a refresher, come out and join us. The sessions are held on a Saturday at 10:30am in Room 115 of the City of Ottawa Central Archives. Coffee and tea will be available throughout the morning. There is no charge for the session and all are invited to return at 1:00pm for the monthly presentation. Check our website at http://ogsottawa.on.ca/ for details on the morning and afternoon presentations.
For the first half of 2015, we covered Getting Started, Are You a Trust Me Genealogist?, Genetic Genealogy, Lineage Societies and Ottawa Resources. The fall schedule includes Genealogical Resources in Eastern Ontario, the Genealogical Proof Standard anSeven Common Genealogy Research Mistakes to Avoid.
We are looking for local genealogists who are willing to give a Genealogy Back to Basics presentation in 2016. There is no reimbursement other than all the tea and coffee that you can drink as well as the appreciation of your fellow hobbyists. If you are interested in participating, contact Mike More at ottawaprogram@ogs.on.ca

30 July 2015

Bytown Days

Bytown Days | Journées Bytown
Bytown Days are now under way. Check it out at http://www.bytowndays.ca/

Join me for the Genealogy Workshop on Sunday at 1pm and share your expertise with the rest.

On Monday, Ottawa Branch will have a table in the Heritage Marketplace where you can learn more about the hobby and local resources.

22 July 2015

Ottawa Branch to host Ontario Genealogical Society Conference 2017

The Ontario Genealogical Society’s annual Conference provides for members and the public to learn and share information about the hobby.  There are tours and workshops, lectures and Marketplace, awards, a Research Room, the annual Banquet, displays and special events.

Ottawa Branch has hosted five times, in 1972, 1977, 1988, 2000 and 2007. The 150th birthday of Canada is 2017 and Ottawa Branch will again host the OGS Conference. A small committee has started to plan the event but we can always use help. Meetings are held on-line, so you can participate from anywhere in the world. If you would like to join one of the sub-committees, particularly if you have expertise in Marketing or Social Media, please contact Mike More at conference2017@ogs.on.ca.

If you belong to another heritage or genealogical organization in Eastern Ontario, we would be pleased to have you participate with us. For more details, contact Mike at conference2017@ogs.on.ca.

28 June 2015

Scottish Coats of Arms

I copied the following from the Scottish Clans and Families Facebook page:

In Scotland Coats of Arms are owned by an individual not a family, there are companies out there mis-selling coats of arms as 'family' coats of arms. Just to warn people who have just joined the group. The Clan/Family wear the clan crest - not the coat of arms (know its very confusing) - here's a post explaining more: https://www.facebook.com/groups/scottishclans/permalink/10152869197823956/

 Officers, 2009

Gene-O-Rama 2016

Mark your calendars. Gene-O-Rama 2016 will be 1-2 April 2016.

26 June 2015

Ottawa Branch events: Saturday, June 27th

Saturday, 27 June Ottawa Branch 

10:30am Genealogy: Back to Basics - Ottawa Resources 
City of Ottawa Archives, 100 Tallwood Drive (Room 115) 

Welcome to Genealogy: Back To Basics! Genealogy B2B is a short lecture on a genealogical topic, followed by a Question and Answer session with Ottawa Branch members. If you are new to family history research or need a refresher, come out and join us!  This month's topic is "Ottawa Resources" with Mike More 

Coffee and tea will be available throughout the morning. 

1:00pm Ottawa Branch AGM & Presentation: "Researching British Home Children – An Education" 
City of Ottawa Archives, 100 Tallwood Drive (Room 115) 

1:00-1:30: Networking and Refreshments 
1:30-3:00: AGM and Presentation Annual General Meeting followed by our monthly presentation. This month's presentation will be "Researching British Home Children – An Education". Gloria Tubman will discuss publicly available information about British Home Children, the majority who came to Canada during the period of 1869 to 1939. Some of the information presented may dispel previously accepted ideas about Home Children. A research case will demonstrate the information in the public domain that one can expect to uncover while searching for information on a Home Child or any other person.  

This meeting will be simulcast for members who can't join us in person. To join the meeting, go to: http://genealogicalstudies.adobeconnect.com/ottawaogs/ 

3:00pm Computer Special Interest Group 
City of Ottawa Archives, 100 Tallwood Drive, Ottawa, ON room 115 

The Computer Special Interest Group meets following the branch's monthly meeting to share experiences with Genealogy and computers.

23 June 2015

Safe Solutions for hard to read tombstones

Kathryn Lake Hogan UE posted the following link for reading tombstones on the Ontario Genealogical Society Facebook page: http://www.ncgenweb.us/newhanover/cem1.html

I have been a proponent of treating tombstone properly for many years and I am glad to see this on one website. Another good site is The Association for Gravestone Studies at https://www.gravestonestudies.org/.

10 Free Canadian Genealogy Websites

Family History Daily has recently posted a great list of 10 Free Canadian Genealogy Websites. You can visit it here:
10 Free Canadian Genealogy Websites

05 June 2015

Military Settlers: The Second Annual Kawartha Conference by Kawartha Branch, Ontario Genealogical Society

Saturday, Oct 3
Peterborough ON

Speakers will discuss the political and military situation in the UK and Canada, useful records, and several military settlement schemes.

Cost $35, includes snacks and lunch.
Registration is essential.
Watch for announcements.

03 June 2015

Saturday meetings

Although the Main Branch of the City Archives is not involved with Doors Open Ottawa 2015, doors will be open at 100 Tallwood for Ottawa Branch's Back to Basics at 10:30 am, the monthly presentation at 1pm and the Computer Group at 3pm. The Research Room on the third floor will also be staffed throughout the day. More details are at http://ogsottawa.on.ca/

01 May 2015

Ottawa Zoomer Show 2015

The Ontario Genealogical Society, the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa (BIFHSGO) and the City of Ottawa Archive have again taken a booth at the Ottawa Zoomer Show to be held 9-10 May at the Shaw Centre (Ottawa Convention Centre) downtown: http://www.zoomershow.com/events/ottawa2015/.

FOR FREE TICKETS to your friends, family and customers – so they can come visit you at the show – please share this information with them:

 Come out and say hello, enter the draw for an Ancestry subscription as well as memberships to OGS and BIFHSGO. We hope to see you there.