28 August 2019        Click here to View this email in your browser 
Members' Forum

Voyageur Brick Walls
From Terry Hartley

"I descend from several Voyageurs of the Northwest Company ("NWC") who came to Western Canada as part of their work for that company and who eventually retired to the Red River Settlement (present day Winnipeg). Some of these men went to work for the Hudson's Bay Company ("HBC") after the merger of the NWC and HBC in 1821. I have checked what is available on-line for these companies and in some cases I have found HBC occupational records and in others I have found NWC Voyageur contracts that provide a name and a home parish (but typically no age). The early 19th century Roman Catholic parish records for the Red River Settlement (St Boniface) mostly burned in a fire so even if there were marriage records for these men that would lead to information about the names of their parents, these usually did not survive."

There is much more to read on Terry's brick wall on the Members' Forum on our website.


Webinar Proposals

Interested in providing our members with a presentation, lecture, or workshop where you and the attendees participate in real-time using our video conferencing software?

Contact us with your topic and preferred date and time at

Our Upcoming Webinars 

(To register for a webinar, go to our Upcoming Webinars page on our Website.)

New Member Orientation


Date and Time: Monday, September 9, 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 PRDH, BMS2000, and Fichier Origine databases.

Using City Directories for Genealogical Research


Date and Time: Thursday, 19 September, 2019 - 19:00 EDT

Presenter: Mark Gallop

Learn how to navigate the online Lovell's Directories for Montreal (1842-2010) and the Marcotte Directories for Quebec City (1822-1976) to understand more about your ancestors, their businesses, neighbours, and communities.

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 06 - Montreal

Located in the southern part of the province, the administrative region of Montreal  includes several of the islands of the Hochelaga Archipelago in the Saint Lawrence River, including the Island of Montreal, Nuns' Island (Île des Sœurs), Île Bizard, Saint Helen's Island (Île Sainte-Hélène), Île Notre-Dame, Dorval Island (Île Dorval), and several others. This administrative region is the second-smallest but most populous of Quebec's 17 administrative regions.

The history of the city of Montreal spans about 800 years. At the time of European contact, the area was inhabited by the St. Lawrence Iroquoians, a discrete and distinct group of Iroquoian-speaking indigenous people who spoke Laurentian. Jacques Cartier became the first European to reach the area now known as Montreal in 1535 when he entered the village of Hochelaga on the Island of Montreal while in search of a passage to Asia during the Age of Exploration. Seventy years later, Samuel de Champlain unsuccessfully tried to create a fur trading post but the Mohawk of the Iroquois defended what they had been using as their hunting grounds. A fortress named Ville Marie was built in 1642 as part of a project to create a French colonial empire. Ville Marie became a centre for the fur trade and French expansion into New France until 1760, when it was surrendered to the British army, following the French defeat of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. British immigration expanded the city and the city's golden era of fur trading began with the advent of the locally owned North West Company. Montreal officially became a city in 1832.

The following are new resource links added over the past weeks to the administrative region of Montreal on the Resource Links page of our website:


1. Canadian Jewish Archives
  • Located in Montreal and sponsored by the Alex Dworkin Foundation for Jewish Archives, the Canadian Jewish Archives collects and preserves documentation on all aspects of the Jewish presence in Quebec and Canada. 

2. The Grey Nuns of Montreal

The archives and collections of The Sisters of Charity of Montreal, the “Grey Nuns”, are located at the Maison de Mère d’Youville. Their archives and collections are available to the members of the Congregation and researchers and include 500 meters of textual documents divided into 350 archival fonds, 500 maps and plans, 25,000 photographs, and much more.

Births, Marriages, Deaths

Originis website

From the Originis website, we have added baptisms and marriages for the Montreal region. Here you will find indexes in alphabetical order that when selected will display the transcription of the record.

               INDEX                                                                     TRANSCRIPTION




Find A Grave

Includes 23 cemeteries for the Montreal region with photographs of gravestones, and portraits, biographies, and stories of the deceased.

Wondering why one of your ancestors had died or changed their place of work or residence? Perhaps they were involved in one of the many historic fires in the Montreal region.

1873 - St. James Hotel Fire

Terrible Scenes Among the Boarders and Servants--A Woman Hangs to a Window-Frame for Half and Hour--Two Lives Lost. The Montreal papers come filled with details of the terrible scenes connected with the partial destruction of the St. James Hotel, in that city, by fire, on Monday night. The hotel was a five story structure, and it was with extreme difficulty that the firemen were able to drag their hose up the stairs to the fourth story, where the flames first raged. Meanwhile the servants of the hotel on the upper floor, blinded by smoke and bewildered with terror, rushed frantically for the stairs, but in may instances were unable to find them, and , driven back by the flames, betook themselves to the roof or windows.

1890 – Three Die in Fire

THREE LIVES LOST IN A FIRE. A WOMAN AND TWO CHILDREN FALL TO THE GROUND. Montreal, Jan. 12. -- During a fire, MRS. GORMAN threw herself from an upper story window and died shortly afterward from her injuries. Two of her children, a girl aged sixteen and a boy aged four, fell from a ladder while attempting to escape, and were fatally injured.

1927 - Laurier Palace Theatre Fire


Montreal, Jan. 10. -- The death of another youngster today brought the number of casualties up to 77 in the Laurier Palace theatre fire and panic here yesterday afternoon. Some thirty other children, who were injured in the catastrophe, are now receiving treatment in hospitals. The six bodies which remained unidentified up to a later hour last night were claimed by the parents of the victims at the morgue today.

All of the victims have now been identified.

From the Internet Archive digital library, we have added several documents to help you find information about your ancestors in Montreal. You can browse through these documents page by page or use the search field to find specific information.
1. Alphabetical List of the Merchants, Traders, Housekeepers Residing in Montreal 1899

2. Boyd's Combined Business Directory of Montreal 1875-6

3. The old shores of Lake St. Louis with a complete list of old and new owners
4. Rules of the Montreal Archery Club - 1859

In addition to the various rules including the dress code for ladies and gentlemen, this document has a list of its members in 1859.

5. The Call to Arms – Montreal’s Roll of  Honour European War, 1914

You can easily use the search criteria to find  any names of interest.

Passenger Lists

1. Saint-Nicolas-de Nantes passenger list
  • List of 102 men and 14 women of the Great Recruit of 1653 who left Saint-Nazaire, France on the Saint-Nicolas-de Nantes on June 20, 1653 for Montreal.
2. Passenger List of the "Saint-André", 1659
In the fall of 1658, Jeanne Mance and Marguerite Bourgeoys left Montréal for France to raise some financing and get new recruits for Montréal. In France during the following winter, the Associés de Montréal (The Associates of Montreal) provided funds to contract a few soldiers and brides-to-be for some of the settlers, Jeanne Mance with the financing of Madame de Bullion recruited three nurse-nuns for her Hôtel-Dieu hospital in Montréal, a few brides-to-be and some families most from the village of Marans in Aunis, and the Séminaire de Saint-Sulpice (Saint-Sulpice Seminary) of Paris contracted some labourers, artisans and future brides. There are 111 entries on the list.
Stay tuned for our next issue where we will be concentrating on administrative region 07 - Outaouais!

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

How to Preserve the Treasures in Your Home

July 25, 2019


When you preserve the treasures in your home and the homes of your loved ones, you magnify the depth of your family history.

Family history and genealogy research are incomplete without personal stories. Writing personal history might stop you in your tracks and suck the fun out of your genealogy journey. However, if you look around at the treasures in your home, you have the perfect place to start writing and preserving your personal history.

Look up from this post at your home. What do you see?

  • Do you have anything adorning your walls?
  • Are your shelves filled with souvenirs or collections?
  • What keepsakes lay tucked away in boxes for safekeeping?
  • What treasure are in your kitchen, bedroom, living room?
  • Or, what do you fit into a one-room flat?

After looking around, did you say:

  • “Not much. I’m keeping things simple.”
  • “Too much. I can’t even keep track of it all.”
  • “Just enough. I have functional pieces surrounded by the treasures of my life.”
  • None of the above

The Treasures in Your Home Are Worth Preserving

Whatever your circumstance, you likely keep things because they have a purpose and possibly a special meaning. Within the functionality and sentimentality of these items, you have the ingredients to write your personal history.

In my living room, I have a display case featuring many items from around the world. My husband collected some keepsakes on business trips. Others are gifts from his brothers. Still, other treasures were collected while my husband and I traveled to Taiwan.

Each of these items has a story worth sharing. In so doing, I preserved my legacy.

How should you preserve the stories of your treasures?

Read more

DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy 

Discovering Your Ancestors – One Gene at a Time

First Steps When Your DNA Results are Ready – Sticking Your Toe in the Genealogy Water

Recently someone asked me what the first steps would be for a person who wasn’t terribly familiar with genealogy and had just received their DNA test results.

I wrote an article called DNA Results – First Glances at Ethnicity and Matching which was meant to show new folks what the various vendor interfaces look like. I was hoping this might whet their appetites for more, meaning that the tester might, just might, stick their toe into the genealogy waters

I’m hoping this article will help them get hooked! Maybe that’s you!

A Guide

This article can be read in one of two ways – as an overview, or, if you click the links, as a pretty thorough lesson. If you’re new, I strongly suggest reading it as an overview first, then a second time as a deeper dive. Use it as a guide to navigate your results as you get your feet wet.

I’ll be hotlinking to various articles I’ve written on lots of topics, so please take a look at details (eventually) by clicking on those links!

This article is meant as a guideline for what to do, and how to get started with your DNA matching results!

Read more

Segment Triangulation: Proving an Ancestral Line 

Have you heard the term “segment triangulation” associated with DNA and wondered what that meant? Perhaps you wondered if this could help you confirm an ancestor that you’ve researched? Which DNA testing and third party companies offer this tool? In this article, I’ll define the term and show how the process can help you in your genealogy journey of discovering your genetic family tree.

Pedigree Triangulation

I previously wrote about pedigree triangulation and used the following visual from the ISOGG Wiki page to explain the concept. You and your DNA match both received DNA from your Most Common Recent Ancestor (MRCA). In pedigree triangulation, you compare your family trees to find the path back to the MRCA.

Segment Triangulation

Now let’s talk about segment triangulation. Although this also involves a triangle, in this case we’re talking about three DNA matches. If two or more people match with a third person on the same segment of DNA AND they all match with each other on that segment of DNA then they each have inherited that shared segment of DNA from a common ancestor. The following image illustrates a triangulated match between me and two DNA cousins who all share DNA on my maternal copy of chromosome 7.

Segment triangulation is ideal, but not always possible. The amount of DNA you inherit from an ancestor decreases with each generation. Because the DNA randomly recombines with each generation, you will not inherit the same DNA segments from your grandmother as your first cousin. You’ll likely inherit some common segments, but not all.

Read more

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.



The 2019 gathering of the Blais d’Amérique ushers in a new practice, i.e. a 2-day gathering.
The magnificent Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region will greet the Blais on August 31 and September 1st. As descendants of our common ancestor Pierre Blais, you are invited to once again take part in the joyous family gathering.
The decision to hold the gathering in the Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean region shows how the directors strive to bring the annual event to various places where large numbers of Blais families live and work.
To date, we have had the pleasure of discovering the attractions of 17 cities or towns, where we were always greeted with warm hospitality and generosity that greatly inspired us and amplified the friendly atmosphere of the gatherings. We thank all the past, and present, organizers.

For more information click here

Rassemblement des Levasseur

A gathering of the families Levasseur, Carmel, Borgia, Vasseur, Vassor… will be held in Quebec City, at the Travelodge Hotel, Saturday, September 14, 2019.

Please mark this date on your calendar.  You and members of your family are invited to attend and meet with descendants of the ancestors Jean, Pierre and Laurent Levasseur.

The Levasseur Association of America

For more information click here

Saint-Sulpice cultural universe revives its tours and rejuvenates its brand image

This year again, Saint-Sulpice's Univers du Culturel is proud to announce the return of our guided tours program in our two locations, from May 29 to September 1, 2019.

To reward our visitors, we offer you a promo code to receive a reduction on the regular price of visits. A great opportunity to see or review one of our two classified sites.

To benefit from it, go to our online ticket office and at the time of ticket selection enter the code Ucss2019 in the promotional code box. The first dates are already available and others will be added, but, be quick; the offer is for a limited time!

McCord Museum Historic Outdoor Tours

Montreal's McCord Museum offers three 90-minutes outdoor historic walks.

Be amazed by the buildings of McGill University's campus with the Golden Square Mile walk, visit Montreal's business district, and learn more about the rescue of the iconic Milton Park neighborhood.

A rendez-vous on Tuesdays and Saturdays until October 5, 2019. Get a 30% discount on the cost of the ticket using the promotional code Heritage2019 when booking online.

Click here for details
We want to hear from you, contact us with your suggestions for future newsletters.

All of our archived newsletters are located on our website under the About Us main menu tab.
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