9 October 2019   Click here to View this email in your browser 

PRDH Database!

Thanks to the efforts of our website support team and the Drouin Institute technical experts, we now have direct access to the PRDH database through our website. No separate logon with a user name and password is required. You logon to the Quebec Genealogical eSociety website, go to the Databases page, and click on the PRDH icon. That’s it!


Our Upcoming Webinars 

New Member Orientation


Date and Time: Monday, 14 October, 2019 - 19:00 EDT

Presenter: Johanne Gervais

This webinar is scheduled for the second Monday of every month. Join us to help familiarize yourself with all the features of the eSociety including using the Resource Links, Members' Forum, and the PRDH, BMS2000, and Fichier Origine databases.

To register for this webinar, go to our Upcoming Webinars page on our Website.

Family Ancestrees


Date and Time: Wednesday, 23 October, 2019 - 19:00 EDT

Presenter: Sue Sullivan

Sue Sullivan, the Graphic Genealogist, is a professional Graphic Designer and owner of FMS Creative Inc. In 2010 she was bit by the genealogy bug and after several months of uncovering great aunts and third cousins (twice removed), inspiration struck. What would an extended family tree, full of cousins look like? As a visual person, she wanted more than a line chart. Sue wanted something visceral, a bold picture that told the story of generations. This was the genesis of Family Ancestrees.

Sue will show us her very unique, personal way of showing off your family history as art!

Click here to register:

Don't forget our Past Webinars page on our website has recorded webinars that you can view at your leisure.

Resource Links
Administrative Region 08 - Abitibi-Témiscamingue

The Abitibi-Témiscamingue administrative region is located over 500 kilometres (300 miles) from the Montréal region, just north of the Outaouais region, south of the Nord-du-Québec, west of the Mauricie and Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean regions and east of the province of Ontario.
Until 1868, Abitibi was owned by the Hudson's Bay Company; it was then purchased by Canada and became part of the North-West Territories. After negotiations with the federal government of Sir Wilfrid Laurier, Abitibi was annexed to the province of Quebec on June 13, 1898.
Abitibi-Témiscamingue is very young, as far as regions go—its oldest city is 130 years old. However, traces of the Anishinabek people date back 8,000 years, and this Algonquin First Nation continues to be a thriving presence in the territory today.
The first migration flow brought people to the northern part of the region along the National Transcontinental Railway, leading to the establishment of towns such as Amos in 1914 and La Sarre in 1917, as well as other infrastructure such as the internment camp at Spirit Lake for so-called enemy aliens arrested under the War Measures Act during World War I.
The mining industry, mainly extracting gold and copper, also contributed to the growth of the region when numerous mines were opened. New cities were created, such as Rouyn-Noranda in 1926 and Val-d'Or in 1934, and mining is still the backbone of the region's economy nowadays, along with forestry and agriculture.
Historic houses and the Sainte Catherine de Pikogan church are but a few of the gems listed below that have been added over the past weeks to the Resource Links page of our website and make up the historical and cultural fabric of Abitibi-Témiscamingue.
Births, Marriages, Deaths

Originis website

From the Originis website, we have added baptisms, marriages, and deaths for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region. Here you will find indexes in alphabetical order that when selected will display the transcription of the record. The following is the index for baptisms and the transcription of the first record.

Find A Grave

Includes 38 cemeteries for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region with photographs of gravestones and sometimes portraits, biographies, and stories of the deceased.

The following is an example of the first memorial in the Amos cemetery.

Wondering why one of your ancestors has disappeared? Perhaps they changed their place of work or residence. Perhaps they died in an unfortunate event such as a fire.

1938 – Rouyn Hotel Fire


Rouyn, Quebec, Nov. 12 (AP) -- Eight persons were reported missing today after a $250,000 fire which wiped out an entire block in the main business section of this mining town in northern Quebec.
The search for the possible victims was hampered by flames which continued to smoulder in the ruins several hours after the fire started in the three-story Albert Hotel and spread quickly to the Commercial Hotel and a half dozen smaller buildings.
Three persons were injured, two critically, by the pre dawn fire which sent 50 guests of the two hotels fleeing in sleeping attire. The most seriously burned were SAM ALLARD of Kirkland Lake, Ont., and A. J. H. STEVENSON of Toronto.
Those listed as missing were:
MR. and MRS. DUCHCANE, Montreal.
ALMA LETOURNEAU, Lasarre, Northern Quebec.
I. LEGARE, Val D'Or, Quebec.
W. H. BROWNELL, post office inspector of North Tay, Toronto.
JACK COLENACHAN, Rouyn jeweler.
ETIENNE PELLAND, Rouyn town engineer.
A ninth person, FRED PLATT of Sigma Mines, near Rouyn, who was listed earlier among the missing, appeared late today and said he had registered at the Albert Hotel but was not in his room when the fire swept the building.
ALEX LE CLERE, Rouyn town clerk, told police that he discovered the fire shortly after he heard what sounded like two muffled explosions.

Genealogical and Historical Societies

Saint-Germaine-Boulé Historical and Genealogical Society

The Society has a vast collection of documents and photos relating to the history of the municipality of Sainte-Germaine and its pioneers.
Top left - The construction of the church in 1940. Priest Joseph-Alfred Roy and his father Alfred. Above - Father Roy, on the right of the photo, and Father Henri Mailhot, on the left, gathering timber for the church's construction in 1940.


Sainte Catherine's Church of Pikogan

The church is named after Kateri Tekakwitha, the first Amerindian woman to convert to Catholicism. In the shape of a tipi, it houses some surprising pieces: a moose hide chasuble, a woven crucifix with medicinal roots, a series of drums decorated with leather strap characters illustrating the Way of the Cross.

Spirit Lake Internment Camp in Abitibi

Between 1915 and 1917, the Spirit Lake detention camp was one of 24 camps built in Canada during the First World War and is unique in that it was:
  • the second largest camp in Canada  with 1,200 detainees (mostly Ukrainian)
  • one of only two camps hosting families
  • one of the few sites where there is still a cemetery for prisoners who died in the camp

Brother Moffet's House

You can visit the oldest Témiscamingue house still standing, built in 1881, and declared a historic monument. Discover one of Témiscamingue’s great legends, the story of brother Moffet. Thanks to this tenacious and determined man, the region laid the foundations of a sustainable agricultural future.

Hector-Authier House in Abitibi

Hector-Authier House is a witness to the beginnings of Abitibi. In addition to being considered the first sustainable and stylized house in the region, this house has now become an interpretation centre on the life and work of the man known as the Father of Abitibi.


  • L’Abitibi – 1920-1925
  • Progrès de Rouyn-Noranda - 1954
  • Rouyn-Noranda Monitor 1959 - 1971
  • Rouyn-Noranda Press 1934 - 1967

Stay tuned for our next issue where we will be concentrating on administrative region 09 - Côte-Nord !

If you have found an interesting resource link that is not on our website, please let us know and we will add it.
In the News

‘Any idea we had about privacy is over,’ says author of new book on genealogy

October 3, 2019

yFile York University's News

Genealogy is a white-hot topic, an endless data mining project and a very lucrative business. Three years ago, Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies Professor Julia Creet produced and directed Data Mining the Deceased, a TVO documentary that has now been seen by over half a million people and is streaming on demand in Canada, the U.K., the U.S., India and Australia.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada called it “one of the best projects we have funded.” Indeed, Creet’s research is well poised to inform policy-makers’ decisions around how to regulate this seemingly unregulatable area of technological development.

Today, the 2019 recipient of the President’s Research Impact Award is on the eve of releasing a book that’s a companion piece to the film. The Genealogical Sublime will be published by the University of Massachusetts Press in February 2020. Funded by the Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council and the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, it traces the histories of the largest, longest-running, most lucrative and most rapidly growing genealogical databases.

Creet sits down with Brainstorm to discuss her highly anticipated new book.

Julia Creet and the cover of her upcoming publication. Image reproduced with the permission of the University of Massachusetts Press

Q: Do customers realize the ramifications of handing over their DNA?

A: Nobody predicted how this information could be used. GEDmatch, a public database in the U.S. with few privacy provisions, is a case in point. Here, consumers uploaded their genetic results from Ancestry and 23andMe to find relatives. In spring 2018, without permission from the database or its users, the police uploaded the DNA from an old rape-murder case (the “Golden State Killer”), found distant matches and, working with a genealogist, rooted out the criminal: 72-year-old Navy veteran Joseph James DeAngelo.

GEDmatch has become an invaluable source for law enforcement. This raises very serious issues of genetic privacy.

“No more family secrets. When submitting your own genetic information, you’re providing the genealogy of your children, grandparents, distant cousins, entire family.” – Julia Creet

This really showed customers that you’re not just submitting your own genetic information, you’re providing the genealogy of your children, grandparents, distant cousins, entire family.

This is what people don’t seem to understand about DNA: Privacy is antithetical to genealogy. The real issue now is how to protect the privacy of people who haven’t uploaded their DNA, which is next to impossible.

To read the complete article

Playing Catch a Killer With a Room Full of Sleuths 

Published Oct. 5, 2019
Updated Oct. 7, 2019, 11:04 a.m. ET
The New York Times

At a forensic conference in California, law enforcement officials grappled with how to avoid destroying one of the field’s biggest innovations in decades.

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. — On a recent afternoon, under two giant chandeliers, some of the key people responsible for the future of crime and privacy tried to solve a murder.

“She was found in 1982 in Newark,” said the class leader, who opened the session by bursting into song. That plus the little plates of cannoli positioned on each table might have led an uninformed interloper to mistake the event for the $33-a-ticket catch a killer game across town.

But though the scenario was fictional, the players involved made it anything but a game. Seated in his deceptively low-key white shorts and hiking boots was Thomas Callaghan of the F.B.I., who was involved in overseeing Codis, law enforcement’s primary criminal DNA database over the past 25 years. He recently moved over to the F.B.I.’s rapidly expanding genetic genealogy unit. A few tables back to the right, the genealogist Barbara Rae-Venter, who helped crack the Golden State Killer case, chatted with a friend who was looking to invest big in this emerging industry. A few tables over still, Curtis Rogers, a co-founder of GEDmatch, the genealogy database that is fast becoming law enforcement’s go-to tool for solving crimes, sat checking his phone.

Diahan Southard, the instructor, offered an encouraging greeting to the 115 or so people who had signed up for her genetic genealogy workshop. “I believe anyone can learn to do this,” she said. Though some were old hands in the technique, a majority of the forensic scientists, detectives, coroners and family historians were novices, eager to learn how to identify bodies and suspects by using partial matches to cousins on genealogy sites.

The workshop, held in late September, capped a week of sessions at the 30th International Symposium on Human Identification, an annual gathering for 1,000 “rock stars of DNA” as one attendee called them. It offered a revealing, yet unconventionally performative, window into forensic genealogy, at a crucial moment in its trajectory.

At the same conference, a Department of Justice representative put forth the first ever guidelines for the technique, which burst into the forensic mainstream a year and a half ago, offering law enforcement an enticing and contentious way of identifying violent offenders.

Read more

Quebec Residential Schools

Indigenous children who died while attending residential schools were honoured at a special ceremony Monday September 30, 2019 hosted by the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR) and APTN at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, Que.

The names of 2,800 children who died — and the schools they attended — were listed on a ceremonial 50-metre-long cloth to commemorate their lives.

2019 Upcoming Events

If you know of an upcoming event that could help with Québec
research, please contact us and we will add it here.


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