November 2021 Branch Update



Preserving. Educating. Promoting.
Monthly email to the Family History Community.

Greetings members and friends of Essex Branch,

November has traditionally beenour membership drive month with Early Bird Draws and the ever-popular Grow Our Family campaign. Both are back again this year and will run from November 1st until December 15th. This is the best time to join Ontario Ancestors, as you can save 50% on membership. If a current member brings on a new member, both will receive 50% off their society membership. So, current members, find a friend, family member, neighbour, colleague, etc. to participate in the Grow Our Family campaign. Not a member? Want to join but do not know a current member? Email us at and we will find you one. 

Educational Opportunities 

Here is the last educational presentation for Essex Branch for this year. Presentations are FREE and open to everyone. Simply register at the link provided below.

Tuesday November 9 at 7:00 PM

Loraine DeCerbo will present a virtual tour of the French Canadian Genealogical Society of Michigan website with a focus on Notarial records.  Register for this presentation HERE.

December and January are always busy so we do not hold presentations these months. We are already working on the 2022 line-up and have some great topics and speakers organized.

Don’t forget that past presentations have been recorded and archived for you on our YouTube Channel  which is free and open to everyone.

Mark your calendar and prepare those questions for the FTM Reps. Register to join this event HERE.

Essex Branch Newsletter

Last month, we informed you that we are considering moving from the traditional newsletter, which is published three times a year, to a monthly offering beginning in 2022. We asked for your thoughts and feedback. We did hear from a few members who are in support of this move. We did not however received any offers to help maintain the traditional newsletter. We still welcome your feedback at [email protected].


Over the past few months, we have been telling you about the work the Essex Branch Cemetery Team has been doing at Windsor Grove Cemetery. The team has been finding, uncovering, cleaning, photographing, transcribing and researching headstones in the cemetery. We have shared photos and information of their weekly finds both in these updates and on our Essex Branch Facebook Group. People have been so supportive and grateful of the work being done and the work has been noticed. A reporter from the Windsor Star stopped by the cemetery this past week to learn more about the team’s activities. You can read the article HERE.  Way to go team!


We have some great news for researchers with family connections to Mersea Township. Mr. George Setterington, living in Western Canada, contacted us last month with an offer to share a database he has been compiling for many years of Mersea Township families. George grew up in Leamington on Hazelton Street. He attended Leamington District High School and Leamington United Church. For many years, George’s parents delivered mail on the Lake Shore Rd, Point Pelee and Concessions C, D and E and knew many area families. George has always enjoyed genealogy and the challenge of the puzzles it can present. George has filled many of his days piecing together information for local families and creating his database.

As with many family historians, George is unsure whether the next generations in his family will be interested in his work, thus his email to us. George has graciously provided Essex Branch with a copy of his database, which he continues to work on, of over 10,000 names. That is correct! 10,000 Mersea Township names and info. George wished his database to be free and available to the public.

We are pleased to host his database on the Ontario Families website which is hosted by Ontario Ancestors. The first time you visit Ontario Families you will be asked to register (its quick and free) with a username and password. You will only need to do this once. Log in to gain access to the Mersea database but also other family information submitted by other researchers. 

We greatly appreciate George’s generosity and foresight to place his work in a secure, accessible location for other researchers to access and future family historians to enjoy. Thank you George!

To access the database on Ontario Families, visit our website for a description, instructions and a few words from George. Click HERE.


Parlez Vous Francais??

A new feature has been added to our Essex Branch website. You can now choose to use our website in French or English. 


New Category in our Members’ Library

A new category “History”  has been added in our Members’ Library. In the “History” folder you will find a variety of extractions and excerpts from historical books, documents and articles (see below). Members of our branch can browse this folder, along with literally hundreds of other resources, in our Members’ Library. Not a member yet? As we said at the beginning of this update, now is the best time to join. Send an email to to join with a current member and get the 50% Grow Our Family discount.

Even More Educational Presentations

There are many FREE educational presentations being offered by our society and branches. Here is the line up for November 2021. To find out more about the topics and to register, go to each branch’s website and/or Facebook Group for the details. Enjoy! 
Tues., Nov. 2nd – 7:30pm – DURHAM BRANCH – Proudly They Served: Researching Canadian Men and Women in the Second World War, 1939-1945 – Glenn Wright​
Wed., Nov. 3rd – 10:00am – SCOTTISH SIG – Criminals, Lunatics and Paupers – Christine Woodcock​
Wed., Nov. 3rd – 7:30pm – HURON BRANCH – ‘That Freedom Might Survive’ – from those who served in WWII to the impact on those left behind – the role Huron played ​- David Yates​
Thurs., Nov. 4th – 7:00pm – ONTARIO ANCESTORS – Second World War- Researching the Canadian Fallen – Ken McKinlay​
Sat., Nov. 6th – 10:00am – LONDON MIDDLESEX BRANCH – Exploring A Soldier’s Second World War Experience: Beyond The Standard Narrative – Capt. (Ret’d) Michael O’Leary, The RCR & Sarah Coates, RCR Museum​
Sat., Nov. 6th – 2:00pm – SIMCOE BRANCH – The Spanish Flu – Mike Clare​
Mon., Nov. 8th – 10:00am – SCOTTISH SIG – Cataloguing Archives – George Mackenzie​
Mon., Nov. 8th – 7:00pm – LEEDS & GRENVILLE BRANCH – Getting The Most Out Of Researching On Ancestry – Lesley Anderson​
Tues., Nov. 9th – 7:00pm – ESSEX BRANCH – French-Canadian Heritage Society of Michigan – Loraine DeCerbo​
Wed., Nov. 10th – 7:15pm – YORK BRANCH – Military Show and Tell – various speakers​
Thurs., Nov. 11th – 7:00pm – LAMBTON BRANCH – British War Brides – Sheila Hewett​
Fri., Nov. 12th – 7:00pm – KENT BRANCH – Secrets & Surprises In The Family Tree – Brian Anderson​
Mon., Nov. 15th – 7:00pm – OXFORD BRANCH – Finding World War II Records – James F. S. Thomson​
Tues., Nov. 16th – 7:00pm – SUDBURY BRANCH – Remembering Our Military Heritage – John Grant​
Wed., Nov. 17th – 7:30pm – TORONTO BRANCH – Ontario Census Series – Janice Nickerson​
Thurs., Nov. 18th – 10:00am – SCOTTISH SIG – Scottish Marriage: Instantly Buckled for Life – Chris Paton​
Thurs., Nov. 18th – 7:00pm – TORONTO BRANCH – Ontario Census Series – Ken McKinlay​
Fri., Nov. 19th – 7:00pm – NIAGARA PENINSULA BRANCH – The Wainfleet Nine – Janet Hodgkins​
Sat., Nov. 20th – 10:00am – KINGSTON BRANCH – Remembering My cousin and His Family: Bomber Command in WW2 – Paul Van Nest​
Sat., Nov. 20th – 1:00pm – QUINTE BRANCH – Great Moments​
Mon., Nov. 22nd – 7:30pm – TORONTO BRANCH – Great Moments In Genealogy – various speakers​
Tues., Nov. 23rd – 2:00pm – KENT BRANCH – Family Tree Maker – Mark Olsen​
Tues., Nov. 23rd – 7:00pm – WELLINGTON BRANCH – The Old Iron Bridge – Bob McEachern​
Wed., Nov. 24th – 10:00am – SCOTTISH SIG – Emigration From Scotland – Christine Woodcock​
Wed., Nov. 24th – 7:00pm – TORONTO BRANCH – Ontario Census Series – Janice Nickerson​
Thurs., Nov. 25th – 10:00am – SCOTTISH SIG – Glengarry Drop-in (members only)​
Thurs., Nov. 25th – 7:00pm – TORONTO BRANCH – Ontario Census Series – Jane MacNamara​
Sat., Nov. 27th – 10:00am – KENT BRANCH – DNA SIG – (members only)​
Sat., Nov. 27th – 1:00pm – OTTAWA BRANCH – Capital Chronicles: Abigail Wright-First-Lady of the Capital Area (Ottawa) – Rick Henderson​
Sun., Nov. 28th – 2:00pm – HALTON PEEL BRANCH – AGM (members only)​
Sun., Nov 28th – 3:00pm – HALTON PEEL BRANCH – The Curious Case of Dr. Henry Gray – Jane MacNamara​
Tues., Nov. 30th – 7:00pm – BRUCE GREY BRANCH – Using mitochondrial DNA to Confirm Family Connections – Mags Gaulden

As always, we hope to hear from you with your ideas, comments and suggestions. Have a great November!

From the Ontario Ancestors – Essex County Branch Operating Team
Pat Clancy                     Cindy Robichaud
Michele Watson              David Hutchinson
Linda Urquhart               Tammy Richards
David Thompson