Monday, November 5, 2018

A World War I Journal Featured at our November Meeting

Tues., November 6th, at 7:30 p.m. at Northminster United Church Basement Auditorium (enter off Rossland)

Featuring Bryan Davies telling the tale of the World War 1 Soldier, Pte. Manuel, who kept a journal of all his experiences.

For more details, see our website.

This meeting will also include our Annual General Elections, also, details of the OGS 50% off membership and Early Bird renewal prizes.

Everyone is welcome.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

October Meeting Features Ted Barris, Author



Dam Busters:Canadian Airmen and the Secret Raid against Nazi Germany by Ted Barris

It was a night that changed the Second World War. The secret raid against the hydro-electric dams of Germany’s Ruhr River took years to plan, involved an untried bomb, and included the best aircrews Allied Bomber Command could muster – many of them Canadian. The raid marked the first time the Allies tactically took the war inside Nazi Germany. It was a mission that became legendary.
On May 16, 1943, 133 airmen took off in 19 Lancaster bombers on a night sortie. The crews flew at treetop level from England to the heartland of Nazi Germany’s military industrial complex.
Of the nineteen bombers outbound, eight did not return. Based on personal accounts, flight logs, squadron war diaries, maps, and photographs of the Canadians involved, Dam Busters recounts the dramatic story of these young Commonwealth bomber crews tasked with the high-risk operation against an enemy prepared to defend the Fatherland to the death.

Ted Barris is an award-winning journalist, author, and his blog The BarrisBeat features commentary and narrative from his travels/experience. Among his eight previous bestselling non-fiction books: JunoBehind the GloryDeadlock in KoreaVictory at Vimy, and Breaking the Silence. In June 2014, his book The Great Escape: A Canadian Story won the Libris Non-Fiction Book Award of the Year

TUESDAY OCTOBER 2, 2018, 7:30 PM
 (Corner of Rossland Rd W. and Simcoe St. N.) 

Everybody is welcome. See for further information.

Parking is available on side streets behind the church and across the road in the school parking lot. 
We request that the church parking lot be reserved for those with Accessibility (Handicapped) Permits, please.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

World War 1 Medal Index Cards on Ancestry Free Until November's Medal Index Cards Free until November

As posted by Chris Paton on his "The Genes Blog", is opening up their record set

British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920

It will be free till November. This is to mark the centenary of the Battles of the Hindenburg Line. See more information here.

The collection is accessible at

Monday, September 17, 2018

DNA Special Interest Group to Meet Tuesday, Sep 18 at 7 pm.

Durham Region Branch's  DNA Special Interest Group will be meeting on Tuesday Sep 18 at 7 pm at the:

Oshawa Family History Centre,
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,
632 Rossland Rd North, Oshawa

Remember to park behind the church [off Rossland Rd] and go in the south-west door of the building. The Family History Centre will be on the right when you go in. 

Parking is free and all are welcome!

Saturday, September 1, 2018

September Meeting Takes a New Look at Census Clues

Durham Region Branch's next meeting will be held in our NEW LOCATION!

Date: September 4th
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Place: Northminster United Church, 676 Simcoe St. N., Oshawa (NW corner of Simcoe & Rossland)
(see Parking Map here. The Church's parking lot is reserved for those with handicap permits.)

We will meet in the basement auditorium. Please enter by the side door facing Rossland Road. There is a lift for those with accessibility needs. This entrance is at the back of the church in the parking lot.

Using Census Clues to Build a Blended Family
by Cheryl Levy, PLCGS


Census records provide many clues to further our research. Each column contains valuable information. This is especially true when endeavouring to identify all of the members listed in a specific household on census night. Do all of the members actually belong to the same family? Are the recorded relationships accurate? Can we trust the surnames given for each person? Who are the additional people listed?

Using an interesting case study, we will learn to uncover the details needed for seeking additional documents to confirm their identities. Then follow the steps that were required to build these blended families by placing the household members in the correct family groups. By gleaning census clues, we begin to understand the story behind how they came to all be in the same households together on the census records.

Cheryl is a graduate of the National Institute for Genealogical Studies, with a focus on genealogical research and education. She is a member of Quinte Branch, OGS, where she holds the executive position of Social Media Coordinator.  

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

DNA Special Interest Group July 17th Meeting

Durham Region Branch's  DNA Special Interest Group will be meeting on Tuesday July 17 at 7 pm at the:

Oshawa Family History Centre,
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,
632 Rossland Rd North, Oshawa

We will start with basic questions for any newcomers and then move on to Intermediate questions for our seasoned members.

Remember to park behind the church [off Rossland Rd] and go in the south-west door of the building. The Family History Centre will be on the right when you go in. 

Parking is free and all are welcome!

Sunday, July 8, 2018

New Project for Missing Allied Soldiers from World War I

Press Release - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (June 25th 2018)

Do you have a missing soldier from World War I?
A new project aims to commemorate the 338,000 allied soldiers who are still missing from World War I. Of the 1.1 million allied soldiers who were killed in The Great War, only about half were ever identified and received a decent burial. The remaining soldiers lie where they fell, on the field of battle, whether it be Gallipoli, the Western front, or elsewhere. These soldiers in particular deserve to be commemorated.

Pick a Soldier, Plant a Tree
The new project encourages people to pick a soldier from a list of the known missing soldiers and build a family tree for that soldier going back several generations (using their own family knowledge or available genealogical records). The tree can then be “planted" on the EveryOneRemembered website ( by simply attaching a commemorative “story" to the soldier in question and posting it on the website.

The new project will be of particular interest to family historians and genealogists, but everyone is encouraged to participate, even school children. It is hoped that family trees will be planted for all 338,000 missing soldiers.

DNA Testing
The project is in two parts. The first part (described above) is simply called “Pick a Soldier, Plant a Tree”. The second part of the project encourages relatives of the soldier to do a DNA test in commemoration (using any of the commercially available tests), and leave the DNA kit number or contact details on the EveryOneRemembered website.

Why do DNA testing? Every year about 30 to 60 sets of remains are discovered during routine farm work or building activity in Northern France and Belgium. Previously, these unidentified soldiers would be buried in a grave with a headstone that simply stated “a soldier known unto God“. But in recent times, DNA has helped identify some of these soldiers. And more may be identified in time as DNA testing technology advances.

This second part of the project is called “One in a Million“ to emphasize that the chances that someone's DNA will help identify one of the missing soldiers is “One in a Million“. This helps manage the public's expectations of what DNA can and cannot do. However it also emphasizes that each one of those soldiers was “One in a Million“ to somebody, somewhere, sometime.

For further information on the project, visit the Commemorating the Missing website at