Saturday, 12 February 2011

Book Review: Education and Ontario Family History

The latest book in the Genealogist's Reference Shelf series from Dundurn Press and the Ontario Genealogical Society is a guide to Ontario educational resources for genealogists and historians by Marian Press.

Marian is one of the best-known genealogists in Ontario, a frequent lecturer in the province, including at BIFHSGO next month. It would be hard to think of anyone better placed to write this volume as she is also a longtime librarian at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education..

If someone of interest for your family history was in the Ontario education system, as student or teacher, you'll benefit from consulting this book. Its six chapters are:
  1. Where the Resources Reside
  2. Students in Ontario Schools
  3. Schools
  4. Teachers and Teaching
  5. Curriculum and Textbooks
  6. Post-secondary Education

As a librarian Marian knows about bibliographies, and there's no lack of sources given both for books and archival material. As an internet expert Marian knows about online sources and the book includes numerous references to Internet Archive materials.

I know little about Ontario education, the modest amount I know, particularly in the Ottawa area, is well covered. There are some interesting diversions, always welcome when reviewing a reference book, such as mini-biography of John George Hodgins. The only thing missing, in common with several other volumes in the series, is an index.

A generous Google preview extract is linked from the Dundurn Press page for this book at,

Ontario professionals in the genealogical and allied historical communities will want to have ready access to this volume. Others in the Ontario genealogical community will want to browse to understand the vast amount of material available and consult it from a reference collection when the occasion demands. It would be a poor genealogical library, or significant public library, in the Province that did not keep a copy in their collection.

The cover price is $19.99. It sells for $ 14.43 at

Disclosure:  This review is based on a copy provided by Dundurn Press.

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