Quebec TipTypes

A photograph is a glimpse into the past

Amy Johnson Crow and her #52ancestor challenge have us picking a favorite image this week.

This is not an easy task because I have a wide range of photographs from various family lines. I decided to pick from the pictures I have of unknown people.

This image is a tintype, without a doubt I believe it was taken in Quebec because of the clothing. I have calculated the date of the image to be anywhere from 1870-1900. I cannot attribute it to any family members, but believe it is from the Norton or Jeffery families who lived in Montreal and Quebec City. The children are absolutely adorable.


Unknown family members, likely the Norton/Jeffery family who lived in Quebec City and Montreal.


I couldn’t help but add this picture, also a tintype. I believe it to be the same boy as in the above picture.

If you have a clue about who these children are or the dates of the tintypes I would love to hear from you.

Death Notices – Check Multiple Dates

I would like to encourage you when researching death notices in newspapers to check multiple dates.

Yesterday I was browsing through the Quebec Chronicle newspaper, the focus was the date of the death of Hannah Pozer (Jeffery) Norton my 2x great grandmother.

Hannah died in Montreal, having had lived most of her life in Quebec City a check through those newspapers is vital.

I was very pleased to find a notice of her death which was on the 4th page in the Jan 22 newspaper.


Norton, Hannah P Quebec Chronicle Jan 22 1917

Quebec Chronicle Jan.22, 1917 p.4


A glance through the paper and I was beyond thrilled to find a more thorough obituary for Hannah

Norton, Hannah P Quebec Chronicle Ja 22 1917

Quebec Chronicle Jan.22, 1917

I also was able to discover that a blizzard struck Quebec City on the day her body was brought home. The article also mentions the blizzard affected travel by rail, which no doubt would have created confusion and concern for her mourners.


Jan 23, 1917 p4 Blizzard

Quebec Chronicle Jan 23, 1917


Looking at subsequent papers I also found mention of Hannah in the newspaper for Jan, 23 & again on Jan. 24 –

Norton, Hannah P Quebec Chronicle Jan 23 1917

Quebec Chronicle Jan 23, 1917

Norton, hanna P Quebec Chronicle Jan 24,1917

Quebec Chronicle Jan 24, 1917

I cannot emphasize enough that when looking for an obituary make sure you check the days following the funeral in case it too is reported on.

Newspaper research at its finest!

As the mention of Hannah’s service during the Cholera outbreaks in Quebec City I found more about the years that Cholera was at its worst on the site Historica Canada.

My Military Ancestor – Alfred Lee Norton

Day 5 of the 11-day Military Challenge

Alfred was born in Sorel, Quebec in 1888 to parents Thomas Lee Norton, a baker and his wife Esther Douglas, joining siblings Thomas Lee and Alyce May. Four more children were born after Alfred but only one of his younger siblings survived.

When Alfred was ten he lost two family members, his newborn brother Arthur died in February and six days later their mother Esther died as well. After losing their mother things became tough for the Norton children, the 1901 census reveals Alfred’s sisters living in an orphanage while Alfred is nowhere to be found.

Alfred Lee Norton 1900 8 yrs old Quebec Canada 2.

The only photograph I have of Alfred.

At the age of 26, Alfred signed up for WWI on 26th September 1914 at Valcartier, Quebec. It wasn’t his first military foray, he had previously served for three years in the 8th Royal Rifles and two years with the QOCH (Queens Own Cameron Highlanders). At the time of enlisting Alfred had hazel eyes, brown hair and was standing a tall 5’7″, his occupation is a clerk.

Alfred sailed out on the S.S. Andania and served in England and France.

It was during the battle at Ypres that Alfred earned the Military Medal with the 14th Infantry Ballalion when he showed –

persistent devotion to duty at all times since the Regiment arrived in France. This man has shown good ability and has several times carried up ammunition under heavy fire. His conduct under fire in the Ypres Salient has been splendid especially on May 25, 1916, in tending wounded under shell fire



Military Medal

After the war, Alfred returned to Montreal where he went back to working as a clerk. He married Elizabeth Walker Johnson in 1930 at the St. Giles Presbyterian Church.

Alfred’s heath may have suffered from his war service as he died suddenly at the age of 42 with no children.

Alfred is buried in Mount Royal Cemetery in Montreal, Quebec.

Alfred Norton headstone


Resources –

Veterans Affairs Canada – Medals and Decorations

LAC – Military Medals, Honours and Awards, 1812-1969

Featured image –  S.S. Ardania from the Wreck Site 


Someone’s Military Ancestor – The Jay Brothers

Day 4 of the 11-day Military Challenge

A tattered old newspaper clipping, tucked in amoung a stack of papers that are the remanents of my grandparent’s lives. Carefully unfolding the yellowed paper to see what will be revealed, three brothers off fighting for Canada in WWI, sons of Minnie Jay of 863 Cadieux Street in Montreal.

Minnie their mother tells the newspaper that all three of her boys are wounded –

Jay boys in Khaki

The clipping saved by my grandfather

 Mrs. Jay, of 863 Cadieux street, has given her three sons to the Empire’s service, all of whom have appeared in the casualty lists. Reading from left to right they are: Pte George Arthur Jay of the 3rd Canadian Divisional Signalling Company, who has just been admitted to hospital suffering from gas poisoning; Pte. John Jay, of the R.H.A. now in hospital at Bonscombe and Segt. William A. Jay, who went over with the First Contingent, now the convalescent hospital at Epson, England. The latter has been wounded four times since going to the front.

With no obvious connection to my family, I sit down to research the Jays of Montreal. William James Jay and his wife Minnie had more children than the three sons in the clipping, besides George Arthur, John and William A, they also had Edward, Mildred, Elizabeth, Minnie, and Sally.

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 10.15.21 PM

1921 Canadian Census Reference Number: RG 31; Folder Number: 117; Census Place: St Louis Ward, Montreal, Georges-Étienne Cartier, Quebec; Page Number: 14

I found the service files for all three of the Jay men on the Library and Archives website (which is in the process of digitizing all the service files for WWI soldiers). I am happy to report that all three recovered from their wounds and returned to Canada.

The connection to my family is still a question but I believe that one of the Jay brothers was likely a friend of my grandfather, John M. Dever. John was not only a fellow soldier but also hailed from Montreal, maybe they knew each other before serving or perhaps they were in the same Signaling unit.

I may never know how my grandfather knew the Jay men but I thought it fitting that I remember their service.

#someonesmilitaryancestor knew #mymilitaryancestor

A Family Court Dispute Found in Google Books

Covering all your bases when doing a search for your family should also include a great resource that Google has called Google Books. How to find this treasure trove of information is by using the Google search bar and either typing in ‘Books’ or on the Google toolbar is a More button which creates a drop-down menu, pictured below.Screen_Shot_2017-09-24_at_11_05_45_AM

Either search will bring you to another search bar that will just search Google Books . I have tried numerous combinations to see what can be found about my family. One search I did was the maiden as well the married name and location of my great-grandmother to see what if anything would appear.

Screen Shot 2017-09-23 at 10.02.31 PM

And the results were a little shocking –


The first three results all were about my family and a court case that had taken place in Chicago…WHAT? What was I seeing, I quickly clicked on the links to see what more I could find out about this case.

Not much more information was available –

Screen Shot 2017-09-23 at 10.01.51 PMI was not able to access the full entry from, but it was enough information for me to hire a researcher to dig into the records held in Chicago.

What was found was over 50 pages of depositions from my great grandmother Carrie Jordan, her husband and daughter as well as from her brother James Norton and his family. It seems that after James & Carrie’s aunt Harriet (Laprise) Milligan had died and there was a dispute about her will as she had incorrectly named James Norton as Richard Norton.

The depositions describe numerous visits by aunt Harriet to Quebec City and Montreal where the Jordan and Norton families were living. I was able to get a feel for the relationships between family members, Peter Jordan describes taking the train with Harriet and how they talked about her sister Hannah Pozer Jeffery. I wish I had been in on that conversation, but sadly the person asking Peter the questions didn’t ask as much about the family as I would have liked! The focus of the questioning wasn’t about family history per say, more about names in the family and confirming that James and Richard were the same person and just an error made by Harriet in her will.

Really this is one of THE best finds I have had and it was all thanks to Google Books.

I would like to encourage you to give Google Books a try and use many combinations in your searches, you may discover something unexpected about your own family!


Jordan, Carrie w:friend

Harriet Milligan(?) with Caroline (Norton) Jordan c.1920



When Grandma Became President of the Rebekahs

Today is the day of my grandmother Beatrice Mary Victoria Jordan’s birth in Quebec City. In wanting to mark the day I also realized it is also the 60th anniversary (one day late) of her becoming the International President of the Rebekahs at their Annual Session in Miami, Florida.


Beatrice had worked hard in the organization serving in the past as president of the Quebec Assembly and later as the Treasurer and the Vice President of the International branch.

Her year as President had her traveling all over Canada, the States, to Denmark and Cuba. From the looks of things, it was a busy year.



Arriving in Cuba


Here she is seated at an event given in her honour at the Sheraton Mount-Royal Hotel.


Dever head table 001 - Bea resized

Beatrice 6th from right with her husband Jack Dever by her side


A pretty impressive year and what a birthday present!





The Gazette, Montreal B/M/D – Oct 12, 1957

Here is another installment of birth, marriages, and deaths from newspapers kept by my grandparents, John & Beatrice Dever.

Indexed names –

The Gazette Oct 12, 1957
















































The Gazette Oct 12 1957004The Gazette Oct 12 1957005