Saturday, June 11, 2016

My OGS 2016 Conference Notes - The Archives of Ontario

My tweet @cindiforeman

Our gift from the archives of Ontario

I recently attended the Ontario Genealogical Society Conference in Toronto and I was one of the lucky ones who was also able to attend the hands-on research excursion to the Archives of Ontario (AO).

The photo wall inside the Archives of Ontario
Our day started with a tour of the AO building including the preservation room and two of the twelve vaults located upstairs on the second and third floors. (Note: 90% of the AO collections are stored off-site)

The preservation lab on the second floor
Once the tour was completed, we headed to the microfiche to start our research

The microfiche room
I decided to peruse the miscellaneous municipal records for Essex county Ontario hoping to find records of the Essex gaol. There were some records (not what I was looking for) but I did stumble upon records submitted by my great grandfather John Moynahan who served as Justice of the Peace and Municipal Clerk for Ojibway since its incorporation in 1913 to the time of his death in 1933.

Municipal Records - My great-grandfather's John Moynahan's handwriting
I really enjoyed the special presentation "Preserving Your Personal Archives". The slide below that reads, "Record who, what, when with a soft pencil (2B) on the back edge of your photographs" is the best advice of the day and how I wish all of my ancestors had done that!

Advice on how to archive and preserve your own family history records
 "Saving Stuff" by the Smithsonian was the 'go to book'  recommended by AO preservation archivists and there is a great book preview available on Google Books (click here)

It was a wonderful full day, I did manage to locate the will of my 3rd great-granfather Denis Moynahan (1787-1885) and plan to revisit it in detail and see if there is anything that I missed

The group waiting for the bus after a wonderful day of research

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