Thursday, 7 June 2018

BIFHSGO AGM and Great Moments

This Saturday, 9 June, come to The Chamber at Centrepointe Nepean for all the excitement and suspense of the BIFHSGO Annual General Meeting, starting at 9 am.

As an additional attraction, starting at 10 am, four society members present in the semi-annual Great Moments in Genealogy session.

Was my Great-great Uncle David Jeanes a Murderer?
David Jeanes' great great uncle, David Jeanes, a coachbuilder in Cathays, Cardiff, left Britain mysteriously and suddenly in the 1880s. The family never spoke of him, and David only heard sketchy mentions of him by his grandfather and a cousin of his father. Searching ship passenger lists, South African church records, and finally the wonderful new resource, Welsh Newspapers Online, revealed a sensational story.

About the speaker
David Jeanes is a BIFHSGO member, president of Heritage Ottawa, and member of the executive of the Ottawa Welsh Society.

Who’s Crazy?
What happened in the 19th century when your husband died leaving you with three small children to support?  When those children proposed moving away in search of a better life?  Mary Oliver Brydon emigrated to Ontario from Scotland as a child around 1830. Dianne Brydon will tell the tragic story of Mary's life, a case study in women's limited options and how 19th-century society dealt with mental illness.  A great moment happened when two 4th cousins found each other and compared documents they had each unearthed.

About the speaker
This is Dianne Brydon's second Great Moment presentation. In June 2017 she talked about research with her father for their book, The Stalwart Brydons: From Scotland to Galt to Portage La Prairie. The book also includes the story of Mary Brydon's early life. During a book tour through southern Manitoba, Dianne met Carol Bray, Mary's descendant, and co-president of the Beautiful Plains branch of the Manitoba Genealogical Society. Carol had discovered the details of Mary's later life, which had been elusive for many years. Together, they crafted the story which Dianne will present.

A Great Little Great War Story
A lonely Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone standing at Czar, Alberta marks the resting place of the first CEF soldier to die in the First World War. Born in Stroud, Gloucestershire, like many volunteers he was a recent immigrant; unlike most he had an unusual amount of military background. John D. Reid will share his family history story.

About the speaker
John D. Reid, a proud son of Norfolk, is a Society past president and member of the BIFHSGO Hall of Fame. Best known of his blog, Canada's Anglo-Celtic Connections, he writes a regular column in BIFHSGO's Anglo-Celtic Roots.

Finding the Fennells, with a Bonus Surprise
One of Ann Burns' most frustrating brick walls had been her great-great-grandfather Patrick Fitzpatrick and his wife Annie Fennell. All Ann knew were their names and the counties in Ireland they came from. While Patrick remains elusive, a combination of detective work at home, release of the Irish parish records, expanded searchable databases, some friendly help in Ireland, and a bit of Irish luck, allowed Ann to go back two more generations, not only to the Fennell ancestors, but the very place they came from.

About the speaker
Ann Burns started researching her family history in 2003 and joined BIFHSGO in 2004. Inspiration for this pursuit had a long build-up, but retirement made it much easier. A trip to Ireland in 2008, where a connection was made with living relatives, has been followed by nine more trips. During these sojourns, of two weeks to three months duration, other than visiting relatives, Ann spends as much time as possible following paper trails and winding roads, tracking down clues about her Irish ancestors.

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