27 March 2009

Death or Canada survivor?

The following is from Charmaine Lindsay

The City of Toronto Archives is sponsoring a panel discussion on the famine migration to Toronto in 1847 on Tuesday April 7th at 7 p.m.

Robert Kearns, Chairman of Ireland Park, would like to enlist the help of genealogists in determining the fate of the mother of the family portrayed in the docudrama "Death or Canada".
A newspaper article from the Toronto Globe, dated July 28, 1847, describes the sad case of the Willis family in which the mother was the sole surviving member of a family of 7. She ended up in Brantford and was the subject of a letter by the Reverend Mr. Usher.
If anyone can trace what happened to Mrs. Willis from this point onward I'm sure our panelists would greatly appreciate hearing about it. The article does not mention Mrs. Willis' first name but I believe it was Mary. Also, the film mentions that Mrs. Willis was taken into the family of an Anglican minister which may be the Rev. Mr. Usher mentioned above.
If anyone is able to find out anything about Mrs. Willis we would be thrilled to be able to mention it at the panel discussion on the 7th.

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