Saturday, February 27, 2010

Circumstances of Death File for Great War Soldiers

Here is a handy tip for people researching Canadian Great War soldiers who were killed in action: request their Circumstances of Death File. The first step for most people researching a soldier is usually to request the service file from Library and Archives Canada (LAC.) It is somewhat less known that LAC also maintains the Circumstances of Death Files for soldiers killed in action. These records are only about one page in length and are not part of the service record.

A few things to note: none of the records for soldiers with surnames beyond 'Sims' alphabetically have survived. As well, there is a good chance you may not get a whole lot of information from the form: some will give just general statements like 'died of wounds' or 'reported from base killed in action.' But then again, LAC charges by the page, and since these are one page documents, it will cost you only about $2 and change to request the file, so it's worth taking the chance that you might find something more.

To request the file, (here's the form to make your request) you need to request the following from LAC: RG 150, Accession 92-93/314 and include the volume number from below based on the soldier's surname:

145 Aaron to Alek
146 Alexander to Amyst
to view the rest of the surname list, please click here.

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Monday, February 15, 2010

Brenda Dougall Meriman has a blog!

Yes, that's right, Professional Genealogist and author Brenda Dougall Merriman has a blog! 've missed out on Brenda's blog for, oh, only about three years by the looks of it. But thanks to the whole concept of six-degrees-of-separation, I'm finally in the know!

The main reason of the blog is to share her ongoing research of her own family tree, and not all of it is strictly Canadian. Many of the Canadian resources she has consulted or books she has written or reviewed would be extremely helpful to others in their own research. One example is her book, Genealogical Standards of Evidence: A Guide for Family Historians (to be published by Dundurn Press in Feb 2010 and which appears to be a continuation of her work, About Genealogical Standards of Evidence: A Guide for Genealogists.) Brenda epitomizes proper citation of sources and includes footnotes wherever necessary on her site. I look forward to having a chance to read more!

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Saturday, February 13, 2010

Don't Miss Out! Ontario Genealogical Society Conference 2010 is Coming!

Entitled, "Twenty Ten: Essentials, Innovations & Delights" this year's conference is back in Toronto, hosted by the Toronto Branch OGS. Of particular interest to librarian's helping genealogists in our Public Libraries is the one day Libraries and Genealogy: An Ontario Library Association Workshop. Check out the link for a great day of speakers and topics!

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Librarians Helping Canadian Genealogists Blog Named One of the Best!

I'm honoured and very excited that my blog has been named one of seven best Canadian Genealogy Blogs by Internet Genealogy Magazine. In her list in the Feb/Mar 2010 issue of the magazine Janice Nickerson, Upper Canada Genealogy writes:
This is a great place to catch up on your Canadian genealogy news. Elise Cole, the author of this very descriptively named blog, is both a librarian and a genealogist, so knows whereof she speaks! As one might expect from a librarian, many of her posts are announcements and reviews of genealogy-related books -- these are very much appreciated.
The other six are varied and a couple I'm glad to learn about in addition to the ones that I follow regularly:

Anglo-Celtic Connections
Olive Tree Genealogy Blog
Toronto 1861
Prairie History Blog (Regina Public Library)
The Global Gazette Newsletter for Canadians (register your email with them to subscribe)

Two confessions I should make:

1. I really appreciate the alerts I receive from loved ones to items which may be useful to share on my blog!
2. I've bought copies - yes, copies, not copy (;-D) - of the magazine to keep in my portfolio and to share with others!!!!!

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Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Google makes Historical Ottawa Citizen available online

Columnist Kelly Egan of the Ottawa Citizen puts it best in his article online today that:
For all the due concern about Google inhaling the world’s storehouse of printed words, it has done something wonderful. ... Quietly, it has digitized and made available online most of the archives of the [Ottawa] Citizen, putting about 2.5 million articles at your fingertips, the earliest from 1890.
That's right, free and easy to navigate, it's available at

To read Egan's article, please visit

Elise (a former Ottawa Citizen Carrier of many moons ago)

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