Newspaper Love

A discovery yesterday over at further proved my theory of the connection of descendants of the Jeffrey family from Quebec.

I have written about the Jeffrey family in a series of posts and thanks to a search at the newspaper’s website I have found another link binding the descendants. If you are curious here are the links to my previous posts; Robert Andrew Jeffrey, Elizabeth Jeffrey, Margaret Stockell Jeffrey, Hannah Pozer Jeffrey, Caroline Jeffrey

Yesterday I found the wedding announcement for Lillian Emily Phillips. Lillian was the granddaughter of Margaret Stockell Jeffrey and her first husband George Humphry a ship captain from Devon, England. I have spent years tracking down the complicated lives of the Jeffrey family and this clipping further confirmed the connections I have been making.

The news article was printed in The Standard Union Brooklyn, New York, October 15, 1903. Lillian was married to Arthur DeForest and the newspaper was kind enough to mention the attendees of the wedding. The mention of an imported wedding dress passed down through the mother’s family is so intriguing to me, I would love to find a photograph and hear the story about this dress.

DeForest wedding 1 The Standard Union Brooklyn NY Oct 15 1903

Philips & DeForest wedding The Standard Union, NY Oct 15 1903

DeForest wedding 2The Burroughs and Sutherland family from East Sound, Washington were descendants of Margaret’s second marriage to James Atkins and half cousins of the bride. From Chicago was the Simonds and Milligan families who were descendants of Margaret’s sister Elizabeth (Jeffrey) LapriseDeForest wedding 3G & W Jeffrey would be descendants of Margaret’s brother Robert Andrew Jeffrey of Levis, Quebec.

I am still trying to figure out the connection that Miss G & K Perkins of Cornwall, Ontario has to the couple. I built out their tree and there was nothing obvious to me as to the link.

I have also been using DNA to make connections to these long-lost branches. The enthusiasm amoung the matches about links that tie us back to Robert Jeffrey and Elizabeth Tipper in the early 1800s may not match mine but I am persistent! I have found the descendants of Robert Andrew Jeffrey almost all in the USA are very willing to put up with my requests!

For me, the Jeffrey family research has been a journey of rediscovery. Each person found helps me to piece our family back to a beautiful mosaic of families, countries, loss, and survival.







Connection Made 126 Years Later

It has been slow going for me to link a letter I found in my grandmother’s papers to living family members, but guess what? It has happened.

Yesterday I logged onto Ancestry and on the home page, there is an interesting notification that shows up if someone edits a record you have saved to your tree. A note appears telling you a change was madeScreen_Shot_2019-08-03_at_6_02_32_PM

I quickly clicked on the person’s name to see why they would make a change to this record. And from there I was able to message them asking if they were researching the Brock family from Hackney, England. I had little hope of hearing a reply, you know how it is, but reply they did! And I have been on top of the world ever since.

Back story

I have been researching the Brock’s almost since I started working on my family tree. It all began with a letter found in my grandmother’s papers. And it meant going to the Family History Library and ordering records in. When the 1881 census for England came out on CD I bought it, just to find this one family. Slowly the puzzle unraveled. There they were four people living at the address 93 Glenarm Rd. in Lower Clapton, but they were all listed as siblings, there were no parents. Time and research filled in the blanks. I was happy to realize that these children including the letter writer Martha Brock, were writing to their uncle Richard Lee Norton who had settled in Quebec City in 1854, my great great grandfather.Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 4.51.12 PM

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snips of the letter written in 1883

Now back to present and me checking my email constantly with hope.

Later in the evening, I received the reply and to be honest, I was sort of scared to click the email in case it was another, “no, not my family, just a collateral line…”. But I couldn’t help myself and it was kinda that message BUT and this is huge, he knows descendants of the family!

They may not be as interested in the family tree as I but they have been found! I am not sure what they are going to think about some Canadian who has been working on their family tree for over 20 years but as they live in New Zealand so I am guessing/hoping it’s gonna be ok!

A huge shout out to my new favorite Britt who made a small correction to a record, replied to my message, and sent me a copy of the handwritten family tree. He has given me a Christmas present in July.

Title: I am counting the connection lost from the date Richard Norton died in 1893 in Quebec City.

Richard Lee Norton’s 200th Birthday

Today marks the birth of Richard Lee Norton in Norfolk, England, my great great grandfather. His father Jeremiah Norton was a shipwright who likely was away from home for months at a time, and his mother Elizabeth Sharp kept the house running. The family lived in Kings Lyn, Norfolk but also seem to have connections to Great Yarmouth where many baptisms took place.

Richard was not baptized until he was 10!

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13 Jan 1830 Richard (born June 1819) Jeremiah & Elizabeth Norton, Shipwright

The records of his shipping career have been hard to find and that is likely how he ended up marrying a Canadian girl. In 1854 at St. Andrew’s Church he was joined in marriage to Hannah Pozer Jeffrey and they made Canada his home.

Between 1854-1877 they had eight children, their second oldest Thomas Lee Norton’s baptism in 1857 refers to Richard’s livelihood, stating he was a Captain of the steamer Montmorenci.


Baptism of Thomas Lee Norton in 1857 in Quebec City mentions his father Richard being a Captain of the Steamer Montmorenci

Richard’s life appears to be fairly uneventful as I have not found an abundance of records of the family in Canada other than the usual baptism of children, census records (except 1881), and if a photograph of Richard exists I have yet to find it. Only one of Richard’s children predeceased him, Alfred in 1879.

In 1893 at the age of 74 Richard passed away, his obituary was in the Quebec Morning Chronicle

Oct 30, 1893
Norton – On the 28th instant, Richard Lee Norton, snr., aged 74 years and 4 months.
The funeral will take place from his late residence 444 St. Augustin St., this (Monday) afternoon, at 2 o’clock, to St. Matthew’s Church, and thence to Mount Hermon Cemetery. Friends will please accept this invitation.
Montreal, Brooklyn, Chicago and London, Eng. papers please copy.


Peter J Jordan standing beside his in-law’s headstone in Mount Hermon Cemetery, Quebec City. In Loving Memory of Capt. Richard L. Norton Died Oct 29th 1893 age 74 years also his wife Hannah Pozer Jeffery died Jan 20th 1917 age 83 years Erected by their daughter Carrie Norton Jordan

My most burning question about Richard is his career, I have checked Lloyd’s Register for Ship Captains, as well sent emails to many places for mariners records in Canada, I am unsure of why he is not mentioned at all.

An overview of Richard’s siblings.

Richard had five full siblings and one 1/2 sibling, I hope to be able to connect with descendants of them all.

His siblings:

1) William Jeremiah Norton b.1806 in Kings Lyn, Norfolk.
2) Mary Ann Norton b.1811
3) Lee Thomas Norton b.1816 worked as a Mariner, moved to London and married Rebbecca Garrard and later Mary Boughton. As far as we know he never had children.
4) Martha Norton b.1822 married Robert Brock and lived in Lower Clapton, Middlesex. She had 4 children and died in 1877.
5) Edward Norton b.1825 first went to sea in 1839 as a boy. He is 5″3′, dark brown hair and hazel eyes. He also has for marks – EN on right arm. Has not served in the Royal Navy but has been in foreign service. When unemployed resides in London according to records. (from his mariner record)

His 1/2 sibling Samuel Wright’s family ended up in Australia and DNA has reconnected us!

My hope is to get to Kings Lyn and Great Yarmouth in the future to explore the areas where my Nortons lived.

Happy Birthday great great grandpa Richard!

What I Found in a WWII Canadian Service File

While I was working on the book I was compiling for the Jordan family I learned that William or Syd as he was known had served in WWII. I filled out the paperwork from Libray and Archives Canada, sent away for the file, and waited.

Yesterday it arrived, an initial look through of the file and it seemed similar to the WWI service files that LAC has uploaded on their website. During my quick flip-through, one page caught my eye and I let out a little (well maybe a big) squeal. The very first time I laid an eye on my relative as an adult, and in uniform.  Not only one picture but 4, all photocopies, I wonder if they have the originals?JQppAmr4QDq2zXxc6H6q5g

I went back through the file a second time examining each page and there were a couple more things that I found quite interesting. It listed Syd’s education level, where he attended school and a list of the places he worked since leaving school. Anyone know what a pin boy is?fullsizeoutput_668e

If you are familiar with the Canadian WWI service files, similarly there are also the pages listing what courses he took, where he served during the war and any promotions.

Once discharged, Syd went on to work at other jobs but included in the file is that he reenlisted, was stationed in Germany and received permission to marry while there. In 1961 he was again discharged from the army. ArBQBv9HT%iLflmBn5xe2w

This service file has really added to my knowledge of Syd and I am grateful that LAC has allowed us to order them (with some restrictions).

If you would like to order a service file I have heard the wait time has been extended to 18 months. More information on ordering a WWII service file can be found on the LAC website.





Searching for Mrs. Bridgeford of Quebec City

I am trying to solve the mystery of the Bridgeford family and their connection to the Jordan family of Quebec City.

I don’t have a lot of information to go on, not even a date.
The limited information I have is from a reply to an inquiry sent by Mrs. Jordan to a Sister at Saint Bridget’s Home in Quebec City. My Jordan family resided in Quebec City from 1852-1909 and there were many candidates for the title of Mrs. Jordan.

The note is transcribed below

St. Bridget’s Home, Que

Dear Mrs. Jordan

Your kind remembrance of me has touched me deeply, and I wish to express a word of thanks to you for it, and also of offering you my most sincere wishes for this coming year. May the Christ-Child bless you and your dear ones with healthy, prosperity & joy. 

I will consider it a duty for me to let you know if at any time dear Mrs. Bridgeford should be ill, that is if I am still stationed here, as you perhaps know, we sisters are apt to change places at any time, however I assure you I shall be glad to do any little service I can for you.

May God bless you & keep you always 

Claiming the honour of calling you my Friend 

I remain yours truly in Jesus & Mary

Sr. Mary-Rose

Do you have a link to the Bridgeford family or Sister Mary-Rose who was stationed for a time in Quebec City? I would love to have some help solving this mystery.

1926 Prairie Province Census Index Released by Family Search

Breaking news, Family Search has added the index for the 1926 Canadian Prairie Province Census.

Some of the indexes are linked to the images, but not all. If the image is there it will appear on the right side if no image appears, there are a couple of steps to take to find it.

  1. Use this link to get to the index Canada, Prairie Provinces Census, 1926
  2. Once you find a record you would like to view click the icon circled belowScreen_Shot_2019-02-25_at_6_19_44_PM

The next screen is this

3. click the tab and it will give you this information


The information below will appear


4. Record the above number is the film number you will need to find and the image number, you will need to record this down as you will need this information. Here is the link you will need to use to get to the list of the films for the 1926 Canadian Prairie Census.

Enjoy people!

Browse the 1926 Canadian Prairie Census NOW

The number of people that are interested in the release of the 1926 Prairie census is telling by the amount of people that look at my posts about it.

I had to let you know, we now have access to the census. They have added the Canadian 1926 Prairie census to their catalog at Family Search. (Thanks for the heads up and thorough post by Gail Dever).

The index is coming but for the time being, you can have a look and see if you can find the people you have been waiting for.

Here are the first few lines for Saskatchewan, as you can see the census is easy to read.

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The weather is so cold I guess it is great timing as there is little else I can do other than look through a census page by page.

As I work my way through the census I decided to create a sharable doc on Google Sheets that people can add to. This doc with help us to share the locations in the census of communities.



Update to the Quebec City Prison Database

A new discovery when I was on the BAnQ website (Quebec Archives) they have updated their Prison record index.

My family seems to have used the facility quite often over the years and I have benefited from the index. Well, first I was a little shocked and once I was done processing what the records were telling me I was thankful that my obviously skewed perception of my ancestors was corrected.

One of my ancestors started using the Gaol when she was 8 and was detained 5 times that year. Her siblings also saw the inside of the walls of the Quebec City jail and what is now the Morrin Centre in Quebec City.

I wrote about Anne in this blog post Arrested at Age 8, Anne Reddy’s Story

As I was saying they have updated the Prison record index with 25,777 new entries of our misbehaving ancestors. The link to the records Persons incarcerated in the prisons of Quebec, 1813-1907, 1914

Here is the information included in the index

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And thanks to Gail Dever I have learned that the original Prison Books are online BAnQ so here is the original entry for Anastasia (Anne) Reddy and her sister Cecilia. (One of her many entries)

Enjoy hunting down your naughty relatives! I will be doing the same.


Death Record for Elizabeth (Sharp) Norton

Some time ago a DNA match sent me a message, and yes, I was contacted, not doing the contacting.

Jeannine who lives in Australia was a DNA match to my great uncle Herb Jordan who I tested at Family Tree DNA. Initially, Herb had done the Y DNA test but since FTDNA stores the DNA samples there was enough left to later test the Family Finder test. Jeannine had also tested there and after looking at my family tree (very helpful to have your tree public) she recognized my Norton line but also that I had an error.

The Mistake
I had Jeremiah Norton my 3x great grandfather marrying Elizabeth Jillings, although this was correct what I didn’t have right is that his children were not children of Elizabeth Jillings.

The Why
In my defense, on the children’s baptisms, the mother’s name was given as Elizabeth with no maiden name. I had assumed that their mother was Elizabeth Jillings, but it was actually Elizabeth Sharp (aka Elizabeth #2).

Elizabeth #2 was the daughter of Thomas Sharp and Martha LEE!! Here is where things got quite exciting, the Lee name has been passed down through my Norton family for generations. I had speculated but had not figured out where the name originated in the family. Things were starting to piece together.

Jeremiah Norton was first married to Elizabeth Jillings and it does not appear they had any children. In 1805 he married Elizabeth Sharp the widow of Charles Wright. Charles and Elizabeth had a son Samuel Wright and my new found Aussie cousin Jeannine is a descendant of Samuel Wright.

Jeremiah and Elizabeth #2 were married in Kings Lyn, Norfolk, England and six children were born of the union: William Jeremiah in 1806, Mary in 1811, Lee Thomas in 1816, *Richard Lee in 1819, Martha 1822 and Edward 1825. *Richard Lee is my ancestor.

The Record
Before life got crazy in December I decided to take the plunge and order a death record from the National Archives, it was a bit of a guess as it is not a rare name. I got the right one! <insert happy dance>screen shot 2019-01-07 at 6.44.04 pm Elizabeth’s death was reported by her daughter Martha and they were living at 37 Terling, St. George, Middlesex, England.Screen Shot 2019-01-07 at 6.44.15 PM.png I did know that the family had left Norfolk and I thought I had found them in the 1841 census living in St. George’s-in-the-East, another happy dance.

The Questions
One win does not mean the battle is over as I have yet to locate Terling Street in 1849. When I posed the question on Twitter it was suggested Terling to be Tarling Street, more work to be done on that. As it seems clearly written as Terling.

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One other thing, as I know one DNA match does not prove the connection but keep in mind that both Jeannine and her brother are matching six Norton relatives. These six testees all descend from three of Richard Lee Norton’s children. At this point, I am feeling confident that the DNA has put me on the right track.

In case you are wondering the relationship between Herb and Jeannine is 1/2 2nd cousins twice removed and they share 41 cM, he shares 60 cM with her brother. I, on the other hand, am a 1/4 4th cousin to Jeannine and her brother and although I do not match her, her brother and I share 16 cM on Ancestry.

The Searching
I am still looking for any living descendants Richard Lee Norton’s siblings, William Jeremiah, Mary, Martha, Lee & Edward with the hopes to do DNA testing to further confirm the above.  FYI if you have the Norton surname in your tree with connections to Great Yarmouth and Kings Lyn, you are my new bestie!

Military Photographs WWI

Yesterday I received a message from a cousin who said he had scanned a few more pictures from his dad’s collection.

I had the time to look at the pictures last night and was surprised to see some military photos.

One picture was from a Musketry School in Montreal taken in 1917. I quickly suspected that my great grandfather Peter Jordan was in the picture on the bottom left. The photo is stamped “9th course Musketry School M.D. 4 Montreal Mar 29, 1917” and the photographer is the Union Photo Company in Montreal.

Musketry School 1917 Jordan

I did a side-by-side with the person I suspected to be my great-grandfather and a known photograph of him

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Think I am on the right track.

The other military pictures my cousin scanned are below but I do not recognize anyone in them. The soldiers are possibly Canadian.

One picture has a distinctive statue, and some research has identified the location as Versaille in Paris, France. If you recognize the pictures or anyone in them I would be happy to hear from you.

Jordan WWI from JonJordan army WWI from JonJordan war from Jon