Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Although this site doesn't pertain to my family tree I thought I would mention it here in case anyone else might be able to use it.
I have been indexing some estate records for Low Country Africana from Footnote on South Carolina but today heard of another database that may be of use to people researching their families.
In an email notice from World Vital Records it says:

Distinguished New Orleans writer and historian, Dr. Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, has dedicated her time and expertise to discover and reveal the background of 100,000 slaves who were brought to Louisiana in the 18th and 19th centuries. Documents and archives collected from France, Spain, Texas and Louisiana uncover African slave names, genders, ages, occupations, illnesses, family relationships, ethnicity, places of origin, prices paid by slave owners, and slaves' testimony and emancipations.
Because the French and Spanish proprietors of Louisiana kept far more detailed records than their British counterparts at slave ports on the Atlantic coast, the records show precious historical data as well as valuable genealogy data. The Afro-Louisiana dataset given by Dr. Hall is a priceless treasure that genealogists and historians alike will treasure for centuries to come.

If you are interested in these records you can access them at this link:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


I just heard about the museum in San Antonio, Texas that took down a wall and found a bunch of historical items in the closed closet. 
There were roughly 200 items in there. 
 Not the actual photos.
There was a bible printed in the 1600s. 
There are various items relating to the civil war era including a letter written by Joseph Wood to his sister in 1861 about the Confederate troops taking over San Antonio. 
U. S. Grant
 Not the actual photo
Also in the closet were World War II posters, including some from Canada and the Philippines, and a rare group of Japanese posters, a Union officer's photo album with family papers and images of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. Photos of the Alamo, local missions and street scenes of San Antonio from the 1920s also were found.
They don't know why the closet was closed off but they are going through the library meeting minutes to see if they can find out whose brilliant idea it was to hide this stuff away.
Not my closet. No really it isn't.
One day someone will have to sort through all my special stuff in my closets...and drawers...and shelves...and counters. I wonder if they will view it with the awe and delight that I am sure the workers in San Antonio did when they found their treasure.
This post will also be on my other blog.

Sunday, November 7, 2010


I have posted here before about Emmanuel Beaugrand dit Champagne. Luckily for me I was contacted by a distant relative (hey there Susan) who also has him in her tree. She gave me some information about him and I was able to find a copy of the text she quoted.
These are Sessional papers from the Government of Canada regarding his character after the Northwest Resistance/Rebellion.
Emmanuel was taken in leg irons and handcuffs as seen here after the battles. What to do when you may be executed for taking part in a fight to protect your land and families. Were they coerced into participation by threats? Damned if you do and damned if you don't I guess.
What I do know by reading this is that regardless of his position during the fighting he tried to be a decent human being.

 NAMES OF OTHERS IN THIS DOCUMENT: Joseph Arcand, Pierre Henri, Ignace Poitras (the elder), Ignace Poitras (the younger), Pierre Parenteau, Moise Parenteau, Jospeh Albert Monkman, Maxime Dubois, Alex. P. Fisher, Patrice Tourond and Francis Tourand.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


I have a brother. I have a brother that I don't know if he is dead or alive. We didn't have a fight or anything like that. In fact the last time I saw him was for a huge family celebration that he had come back into our lives. Alas he is gone again and none of us know where he is.
I miss my brother. I love my brother. There is a big hole in my heart where he should be.
My brother is a brilliant guy as it runs in the family. He created a great business for himself throughout the years and was quite successful. I was always so proud of him.
He played hockey as a youngster. He was a goalie and he was good. At one point he was on an NHL hockey team's farm team. He lived and breathed hockey his whole life. He played for 3 universities. He also played in the Western Hockey League for the Brandon Wheat Kings. 
He has published a few books on goaltending. Goaltenders Are Not Targets was his first. Off The Post was another.

My brother used to make hockey masks back in the day when they were not very fancy. He would make them in his basement and many a young goalie had one made. This is pretty old school but at the time they were impressive.

He was a hockey coach and ran his own goalie schools all over the world. He has even taught hockey in Japan. He had run local schools here and schools in Minnesota and Wisconsin. He coached in Florida too I think but by this time he was no longer in contact with us.
So what happens when someone in your family chooses to no longer be a part of your life?
What happens when we search for our ancestors and we have that one elusive person who we can't account for? Why did they remove themselves from the family? Were they asked to leave? Were they as missed as my brother is by all his siblings?  
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Saturday, July 31, 2010


I recently found this photo of my grandparents, Rosana Pinard (1877-1946) and Joseph Omer Lemire (1867-1950). They lived in Trois Rivieres, Quebec. I never knew them as they died before I was born.
The photo was found while I was snooping through my sister's big box of photos. She had a bunch of interesting ones in there and I think we were both surprised that this one was in there.
My point is that if you don't get snoopy you may miss out on some great finds. Ask your relatives if you can see their photos. They may not know what they have or they may not even care.
I borrowed several to copy and I made sure I gave them back to her the very next time I saw You may even have to use a camera to photograph the pictures instead of taking them out of someones home. Not many people would let you I am sure.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


The Blood Reserve was Canada's largest reserve at one time. The Blood were also known as the Kainai. 
This census from 1901 shows names that would not necessarily be accurate. Were these names given by the people themselves or were they written by a census taker using his own criteria for naming? Many were very insulting and I didn't use a photo of those pages. This is why I question how the names were arrived upon. You can click on the picture to make it bigger.

Some of the names are:
  • Long Time Pipe Woman
  • Crop Ear Wolf
  • Taking Gun in Night
  • Bruised Head
These are not insulting at all but I assure you on subsequent pages there were many that were. I could be wrong but I don't think they referred to themselves in some of those derogatory terms.
There is a beautiful book by George Webber about this reserve called People of the Blood.


 I used to have lots of time to work on family trees. Since going back to work full time however things have obviously changed. When I found a little extra time this weekend I started going back through the emails I had saved into my family tree folder. 
Over the last several months (and some longer) I have saved emails from distant relatives who have contacted me and are sharing pictures and pedigrees with me. I would have had the time to add them into my tree but first I will have to check out the information for myself and find some sources for each and every person. This will take a lot of time. 
I really appreciate the generosity of these people (keep it coming) but I feel badly that I haven't updated things with these new found family members. 
How about you? Do you have stacks of data just waiting to be proved before you add it to your tree? Have you ever added stuff in without checking and then found it all to be incorrect? YES!!!! Have you sent information to someone and then noticed they never added it to their trees? 

Saturday, June 12, 2010


I came across this notation years ago and kept it even though Jean Baptiste Malaterre is not related to me that I know of.
"On July 12, 1851, a small band of Métis buffalo hunters from Saint Francois-Xavier on the Assiniboine River in the Red River Settlement encountered and on July 13 and 14 fought and defeated some hundreds of Sioux warriors on the first slope of the Grand Coteau of the Missouri southeast of Minot in what is now North Dakota. This was the most formidable, as it was the last, of the encounters between the buffalo hunters of Red River and the Sioux of the American plains.
It did not end well for many but for Jean Baptiste it was especially violent. 

MAL À TERRE Jean-Baptiste
d. and s. 13 Jul 1851*
Witnesses Pascal Breland, Charles Montmini
* Burried near the rivière des Chayenne, killed by the Sioux, feet and hands cut, scalped, with a broken scull, his brain lying on the ground. He had gun wounds, 67 arrows and three knives sunk in his body. The exact quote: «Nous soussigné avons inhumé près de la rivière des Chayennes le corps de l'infortuné Jean Baptiste Mal à terre, massacré le même jour par les Sioux. Il fut retrouvé les piés et les mains coupés, la chevelure levée, le crâne cassé et la cervelle répandue sur la terre et ayant dans le corps en outre des trous coups de fusil, soixante sept flèches et trois couteaux plantés."

MHS Transactions, Series 3, 1959-60 seasonMHS Transactions were originally published by the Manitoba Historical Society on the above date. We make online versions available as a free, public service. As an historical document, Transactions may contain language that is no longer in common use and which may offend some readers. They should not be construed to represent the views of today’s Manitoba Historical Society.

Sunday, May 30, 2010


My second great grandparents, Thomas Stanislaus Bruneau and Adelaide Landry were married in 1857. In 1860 the St. Boniface church which held so many records for the area, burned to the ground and pretty much all was lost.
Some 27 years later Thomas Bruneau swore out a statement declaring their marriage information likely to establish claim for Scrip payment for Metis of the area.
"I Thomas Bruneau of the Parish of St. Peter, Rat River in the county of Provencher, and Province of Manitoba; farmer; make oath and say, that on or about the twenty fifth day of January A.D. 1867, I was joined in the Holy Hands Bonds (thanks TK) of matrimony with Adelaide Landry; at the Parish of St. Boniface; Red River Settlement, by the Reverend father Beremont; who was then acting as Parish Priest. That subsequently through fire; the records of the said Parish of St. Boniface were destroyed, and no records now to be found to establish my said marriage."
 Thomas X Bruneau
Sworn before me at                                                                      
Winnipeg in the county Selkirk this 17 day                       
of September a.d.1880                                                                
S. Macdonald

Friday, May 28, 2010


I thought you might enjoy these old photos. We family historians are all about the old stuff aren't we? You can click on the arrows at the bottom of the slide show to advance the pictures. There are a lot of them.
You can see them full screen by clicking that option at the top of the slide show. 

By the way...I have been on those roads shown....The Fraser Canyon and the Bella Coola road. The Fraser Canyon has improved a lot since that photo was taken but the Bella Coola so much. Shriek!!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010


Share A Slice of Your Life has asked us to write about a first in our lives or the lives of our ancestors. This is a new site and you should head over for a peek and maybe join in. 
I know many of  you have seen this story before but I couldn't think of a bigger first than this one. 
I am re-posting this story of my 11th great grandfather who was the first apothecary in New France. His family was the first family to come intact from France to live in the new country. 
 The other first for this meme is is the fact that it is my blogoversary here. 1 year anniversary. You know what? I didn't even remember. Teena in Toronto noticed and sent me good wishes. Thanks Teena. 

Louis Hebert was a very important man in the early history of New France (Quebec). He was my 11th. Great Grandfather and here is what I know about him.
Louis was born about 1575 in St. Germain,
d'Auxerre, France apparently living in a house near the Louvre. He was also married in France but came to New France without his family.
Louis Hebert was an apothecary. This would be like a herbalist/pharmacist at the time.
In 1606 Louis Hebert sailed with Samuel Champlain to Port Royal, Annapolis Royal, Nova
Scotia. There is a river and an island named for Hebert. In the summer of that same year they sailed to the southwest looking for suitable sites for settlement. The area they were attracted to is now Gloucester, Massachusetts. Louis was known for cultivating land and they planted a clearing there to test the soil fertility. He planned to bring his family there.
At one point in this expedition Louis, Samuel Champlain and others
leaped from their ship in the middle of the night to aid some of the men from the ship who against orders did not stay on board and were now being attacked by the inhabitants of the area. They returned to France in 1607. I will continue this story with the return of Louis to New France in 1610 in another post.
addendum: this post has been previously published on my other site Family Trees May Contain Nuts

Friday, May 14, 2010


I am Metis. My mother's family were from Manitoba and several of them fought with Louis Riel in the Rebellion in the North West Territories.
Some of these brave men were granted amnesty as they were said to have been "misguided" while others had to serve out their sentences.
You can click on the pictures to make them big enough to read.

Saturday, April 10, 2010


I received this award from A Rootdigger and I really hope my ancestors would approve of my research into their lives. A Rootdigger has a few sites and is very interested in German ancestry.

Now I need to tell you about things about my ancestors that have surprised, humbled or enlightened me. Oh my what to choose? Here we go.
  1. I was surprised to find out that my 11th Great Grandparents were the first official family to settle in New France. (Quebec) Louis Hebert and Marie Rollet both have statues erected in their honour in Quebec. 
  2. I was really surprised when one of my sisters was sent a photo randomly from her sister in law of a trip she was on back in the 60's. There is my sister on her way to Nova Scotia and she is sitting on the edge of Louis Hebert's statue. This was 40 years before I did our family history and we had no idea we were related to him. 
  3. I am humbled by the sacrifice of all my ancestors but most of all by my Metis ancestors who fought so bravely to try and save their land and their homes during the Louis Riel Rebellion.
  4. I was humbled by my Grandmother who had given birth a minimum of 12 times. How did you survive something like that? How do you care for  them all? Feed them? Oh and the many that didn't survive. How do you bury so many like some of my ancestors had to do. 
  5. I have been enlightened by all my ancestors. I had no interest in history before I started researching but now find many things to interest me about the past. A storm or drought from the past now has real meaning to me. 
I will have to end at 5 due to time constraints or I will never get this posted. I will pass this on to the following bloggers with no pressure to take part at all. I know how busy you all are.
Now I know I am supposed to give this to more than 3 but honestly it looks to me as if all of you already have this award. As I have mentioned to these bloggers I know all of our ancestors would approve heartily of our research into their lives. 

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Genealogists have always come up against brick walls. They hammer away brick by brick to find their elusive ancestors. To find that piece of information that will get them to that next step, next generation. 

So here is the conundrum for future researchers. You are looking at a family and there are two children in the family. They are 2 months apart in age. You start to question this because one surely must be adopted. You hunt and hunt for an explanation but sure enough the records show they are that close in age. You look for a sibling of the parents who may have died leaving their baby with their brother or sister. Nope. No luck. 

I  was just watching the news and they showed a family who had twin boys. One of these babies was born prematurely, the other was carried for 2 more months and was delivered then. They were born 63 days apart. 

Oh how we are going to pull our hair out over these puzzles. 

Saturday, March 6, 2010


I was contacted by the wife of a distant cousin (Hi Chris) about a piece of  jewelry she received that had been in her mother's possession. It was called a mourning ring. There was a name inscribed inside of it with the deceased's death date and age. 

She looked all over her family tree and can find no connection to the name and we have both done research to try and find out who this woman was but we have found nothing. Zero. 

The custom was to bequeath these rings to your friends and loved ones after your death. They were often made with black stones and had the deceased's woven hair under a piece of crystal. Sometimes pearls were added to symbolize tears. 

They also put hair into brooches and necklaces and some created pieces that were all woven hair. Women sometimes had little containers on their dressing tables to hold the hair that they removed from their hair brushes. I think Cass at This Old House has one or told me about them?? I can't remember for sure.

All of these photos are from the Colonial Williamsburg site. They have an amazing site filled with history and genealogy info. I envy those of you who may have visited there.

This ring with the two colors of hair are engraved "George and Martha Washington" and are believed to hold their hair.
Sometimes engraved in these rings were the Latin intials  AET that refers age at death or OBT which refers to the date of death.

Do you have any of these heirlooms in your home? Can you share any information or history about them?

(© The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation 2010
Note: "Colonial Williamsburg" is a trademark name and a registered service mark of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.
The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of reproductions of copyrighted material, including but not limited to downloading, printing, and performance (i.e. display.) Any individual who uses copies of Colonial Williamsburg Foundation World Wide Web site text and/or images (;; for purposes in excess of "fair use" as defined by the copyright law may be liable for copyright infringement.
Any use of text and/or images which is not defined as educational or fair use requires written permission from The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Content of this web site may not be used for commercial purposes.)

Saturday, January 23, 2010


 Hummer @ Branching Out Through the Years has given me this award. What an honour. Really. What I like most about blogging is the sense of community. The fact that she felt I had been a good friend to her is so nice. 
 ADDENDUM: JAN. 27, 2010

Sandra @ I Never Knew My Father has also passed this award on to me. You ladies are so kind. Thank you Sandra. I am really glad I have made a bit of a difference in blogland. 

So meet 'Bandit' "A Blogger's Best Friend Award". Give this award to your most loyal blog readers. Thus, the award should be given to a follower of yours who takes the time to comment regularly on many of your posts. In addition his or her blog should be creative, funny and always entertaining. Upon receiving this award, pass it along to two fellow bloggers who fit this criteria. Wow. Like I said an honour.

Well I don't post a lot on here so there isn't much for my followers to leave comments on.
I will start with Josette @ My Grama's Soul and then Lucie @ Lucie's Legacy. I hope you ladies accept blog awards because you certainly do deserve them.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Either everyone has run out of blog friends to give these to or I am a very lucky blogger. I was given this award by three different people yesterday.
Bill West @ West in New England , Frances @ Branching Out Through The Years and Becky @ Grace and Glory . No technically Bill and Frances gave me the award on my other site Family Trees May Contain Nuts but I will be lazy and write one post to put on both my sites.
As it usually goes with these awards we are required to tell something of ourselves and to pass them on to others. This list is 10 things that make me happy. I will skip over the obvious ones of  family and friends and try to come up with some different ones.
  1. I am happy when the dog does not pee on the floor in front of company.
  2. I am happy when I am not stopped by a train while on my way to coffee group. This is a bone of contention in our community. I mean I am talking my first cup of coffee for the day here. Move it.
  3. I am happy when my husband remembers to call after a day of snowmobiling in the mountains to tell me they made it back to the cabin safely. Maybe I should be more worried about getting a phone call in the morning after all these guys have been back at the cabin for the night to make sure they survive the evening festivities. 
  4. I am happy that my sisters can sing just as well as I do. Read this any way you like.
  5. I am happy when I hear a basketball bouncing either on pavement or in a gym. I don't get that nearly enough anymore.
  6. I am happy it doesn't snow often here in the Vancouver area. We are not supposed to get much snow here but last year was a doozy, snowing every day for over a month. So far this year we are good. Abnormally high temperatures here yesterday.
  7. I am happy that I have tall people in my house to reach things for me. Second shelf is too high for me. Of course if these tall people would put things where I can reach them I wouldn't need their help. occurs to me that all the alcohol is in the cupboard above the fridge. What's up with that?
  8. I am happy that I am such a good driver because everyone else out there drives like an idiot. 
  9. I am happy that I have so many unfinished projects in my life because I will have to live forever to get them done. 
  10. I am happy that my family and friends actually know how crazy weird I am and they still love me. I know this because they all emailed me a warning when the government announced they were going to lock up all the crazy weird people in the city. "Run little buddy, run" was what they all said.
Now I am supposed to pass this on to 10 people. Yikes. So many of you don't post awards. Let me think. I try not to tag the same people over and over again. I will have to stop my list at 8 today. If you prefer not to join in just know that you were thought of.

Hey don't go yet...did you leave me a note?