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In Search of Your Canadian Roots [Paperback]

Angus Baxter
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

Oct. 7 1999
This is the new 3rd edition of Angus Baxter's classic In Search of Your Canadian Roots, now brought up to date with revised listings of finding-aids, record repositories, and e-mail and web site addresses. Handled with the acumen we have come to expect of Canada's leading genealogist, it first discusses the great migrations of Scots, Irish, English, Germans, Huguenots, Ukrainians, and Jews to Canada; describes the national archives in Ottawa, with its holdings of censuses, parish registers, naturalization records, land and homestead records, military records, and passenger lists; summarizes the holdings of the LDS Church relating to Canada; and explores the vast nationwide record sources such as census records and church registers. Next it provides a province-by-province survey of genealogical sources--in effect, a step-by-step guide to the records and record repositories in each of the ten provinces and the Yukon and Northwest territories. This core section gives a detailed breakdown--by province and territory--of vital records, wills, land records, censuses, church records, newspapers, and books, then lists libraries, societies, and archives and their major holdings and ongoing projects. For both beginners and experienced researchers alike, the new 3rd edition of In Search of Your Canadian Roots gives common-sense tips on where to begin your research, how to work backward in time from the known to the unknown, how to test your facts and avoid common mistakes, and, ultimately, how to create a family tree. Whether your family has been in Canada for centuries or only several generations, this superb book will show you how to trace your Canadian roots and have fun doing it.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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From Library Journal

Baxter, the author of several "In Search of" books, returns with an updated version of his guide to Canadian genealogical research. As in the earlier editions, Baxter covers the basics of research. He also provides an interesting overview of major group migrations to Canada; discusses the importance of using LDS Family History Centers, the National Archives of Canada, and major records sources such as censuses, church records, and registers; and touches briefly on coats of arms. Baxter then devotes several chapters to each province's available records, archives, genealogical societies, cemeteries, and libraries. A bibliography at the end of the book provides general histories and genealogical readings. The book does not delve as deeply into source materials as does a provincial handbook like Brenda Dougall Merriman's Genealogy in Ontario (Ontario Genealogical Society, 1996. 3d ed.), but it does provide a very useful introduction to general Canadian research. Highly recommended for all collections. Grenham's new edition builds on its predecessor's excellent coverage of Irish genealogical sources. As in the first edition (LJ 1/93), a brief introduction to initiating a research project is followed by a discussion of the major sources. Although Grenham broadened the scope of this edition to include information about the holdings of the Family History Library and other repositories in Ireland, libraries should not discard the first edition, as it contains a large amount of data not to be found in the second. For instance, the new edition includes listings of Roman Catholic parish records rather than the Church of Ireland parish records listings that were part of the first edition. Information about manuscripts in the Genealogical Office and a list of family histories located in the National Library of Ireland are also omitted. Libraries that own James Ryan's outstanding Irish Records (Ancestry, 1997) will still want to purchase this book for its updated information. Recommended for all collections. Milner, a professional researcher and speaker, and Jonas, president of the British Isles Family History Society, offer their combined expertise to those in search of their English heritage. Geared more toward beginners than Mark Herber's Ancestral Trails (LJ 3/1/98), this starts with an excellent review of the basics of research and the procedures to acquire information from stateside libraries, LDS Family History Centers, and the Internet. Several chapters then address specific, complex sorts of records. Copious examples give readers an idea of what to expect. Icons point out tips, reminders, and case studies, and brief bibliographies for further reading are found throughout the book. For its thorough introduction and its direct approach to sometimes challenging records, this book is highly recommended for all libraries.DElaine M. Kuhn, Allen Cty. P.L., Ft. Wayne, IN
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.


". . . this is the best reference book available for anyone approaching family history work in the Canadian provinces." -- --Forum [Review of prior edition]

"Anyone with relatives in Canada . . . will find assistance in these fact-filled pages." -- --Virginia Genealogist [Review of prior edition]

"As so many Americans have Canadian ancestors or relatives, U.S. libraries should find this useful to have on hand." -- --New York Genealogical and Biographical Record [Review of prior

"Excellent standard work on Canadian and other areas. Basic guide book." -- --P. William Filby, American & British Genealogy & Heraldry [Review of prior edition]

"Recommended for genealogists and genealogical collections with an interest in Canada." -- --American Reference Books Annual [Review of prior edition]

"Solid, comprehensive and informative--touching on every conceivable subject." -- --Southam News Service [Review of prior edition]

"This book is an excellent source of information for the researcher delving into Canadian ancestral roots. . . . even experienced researchers will find this compendium of data useful." -- --Western New York Genealogical Society Journal [Review of prior edition] --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Mr. Baxter starts with the assumption that you know nothing about genealogy and takes you step-by-step in the genealogical process. He makes it seem very easy but also warns of pitfalls that may occur. Along with his other books, In Search of English & Irish and In Search of German Genealogy, you will never need any other genealogy books. He has not written one for US research but he has the rest of the world covered. He tells you where to write for information, what kind of data you can expect from these places and gives examples of his own Canadian research. Buy this book and you will never be disappointed.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You must get this book if you are serious about genealogy June 16 2000
By lwampach - Published on Amazon.com
Mr. Baxter starts with the assumption that you know nothing about genealogy and takes you step-by-step in the genealogical process. He makes it seem very easy but also warns of pitfalls that may occur. Along with his other books, In Search of English & Irish and In Search of German Genealogy, you will never need any other genealogy books. He has not written one for US research but he has the rest of the world covered. He tells you where to write for information, what kind of data you can expect from these places and gives examples of his own Canadian research. Buy this book and you will never be disappointed.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor Research Jan. 20 2000
By hugh armstrong - Published on Amazon.com
I looked at Mr. Baxter's book at the public library and being a member of the Victoria Genealogical Society I was most interested in his observations on our society. I was shocked at the incredibly inaccurate comments that he had published.
The entry starts with the society's name - which he correctly entered. However he then gives the reader an address that is several years out of date. In early 1993 the VGS changed it's address to: Victoria Genealogical Society, P.O Box 45031, Mayfair Postal Outlet, Victoria, BC, V8Z 7G9. Checking in the Genealogical Research Directories (GRD)it was noted that they have published the correct address since their 1993 edition. To cover himself he states that "the addresses given are accurate at the time of writing" but surely Mr. Baxter has access to the GRD.
The rest of the article continues with inaccuracy after inaccuracy and it becomes clear that Mr. Baxter has not done any research into the VGS.
He states that the society "holds few meetings". The fact is that for most of our twenty plus years the VGS has held regular, well-attended meetings ten months of the year. No meetings are held in July or August. Meetings always feature a speaker.
He states that the VGS "does not appear to have any ongoing projects". One large project can be seen on the B.C. Archives website, namely the indexes to births, marriages and deaths. These indexes, produced mostly by VGS members, set a standard that other provinces should emulate. He does mention the indexes briefly under the B.C. Archives stating "Please note, the indexes to Birth, Marriage, and Death registrations are located in the Vital Events section of the Web site". No more details are given to this most useful tool.
Among the other ongoing projects are the extraction of details from coroner's reports and the indexing of stones and burial records of Royal Oak Cemetery. So far over 67,000 burial records have been extracted at Royal Oak and all the stones have been recorded. This is a work in progress and will be published in the future.
He states that the VGS "produces a Surname Index only at occasional interval". The last two were produced in 1997 and 1999. The 1997 version was produced on paper and microfiche. The last one is an ongoing surname index and can be viewed on the VGS website. It is being updated regularly.
To try and justify his contention that the VGS is "the least active of all the provincial-capital societies" he quotes an un-named and totally un-identified person. This person states that "this lack of activity is caused by the fact that only a handful of our 150 members have any British Columbia or Vancouver Island roots". We actually have nearly 400 members and are very active.
He omits to mention that the VGS has one of the finest genealogical libraries in Canada. He also omits the fact that the VGS has an active and effective queries committee.
He fails to mention that the society has hosted two very successful daylong seminars in the last two years. Lady Tiviot, May 1998, and Cindy Howells (of Cindy's List fame), Oct 1999, were the feature guests to the sold out events.
What a pity that Mr. Baxter was too lazy to check the VGS website . Why didn't he write a letter to our president asking for comments or find some way to give the society a chance to defend itself against such untrue statements.
When writing a fact based book every effort should be made to be thorough, accurate and fair. On just this one page I have been very disappointed to find that a man who produces many genealogy books may be too busy to get the facts right.
In his book I was not able to find any comments on the Ontario Cemetery Finding Aid (OCFA) or the British Columbia Cemetery Finding Aid (BCCFA). These are two of the best research tools and are freely available to all but he does seem to know about them. Both are produced by two members of the VGS. He also makes only a passing comment on the extremely important 1871 Ontario Census Index.
He seems to think that there is a provincial genealogical society in B.C. In fact the British Columbia Genealogical Society is the Vancouver area genealogical society and has no status as a provincial body and does not claim such a status.
I won't read the rest of his book or any other of his books. He has lost my trust.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful for all skill levels Aug. 1 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Gives a great general over view of many Canadian record sources sorted by province. Greater detail is needed in the western Canadian provinces. More information on accessing Latter-Day Saints Collection and other resources which are availiable for research outside of local collections is needed. As well as more information on organization of research material. Which is essential to productive research. One of the best resouses for Canadian genealogical research. Great resource for those just starting out to the expert genealogist.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book in great condition Dec 16 2012
By J. OSTEEN - Published on Amazon.com
I bought this book after discovering I have at least one Canadian ancestor. I know nothing about genealogical research in Canada. This is a great book for figuring out how to proceed. I bought it used and it's in very good condition. I'm very happy with my purchase!
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book and great service. Nov. 30 2009
By Ken J. Heeter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Anyone doing genealogical research in Canada needs to have this book on their own book shelf. It will be referred to over and over again.
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