St. Andrew’s Church, Quebec City

Attending a service at St. Andrews Church, Quebec City last month when visiting Quebec City was an important moment in my genealogy journey.

Back in 1818, on February the 4th, my 3x great grandparents Elizabeth Tipper and Robert Jeffery/Jeffrey were wed. The minister Alex Sparks wrote Tupper for the bride’s surname and it took about 15 years to figure out her surname was actually Tipper.

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The first event at the St. Andrew’s Church for my family was the marriage of Elizabeth Tipper to Robert Jeffery in 1818.

A side note is that Chev. Robert d’Estimauville was a witness to both Elizabeth Tipper and her sister Anne’s marriages, and I have yet to find the connection.

I have been to Quebec City on a few occasions but St. Andrew’s, which is the oldest church of Scottish origin in Canada, is only open on Sundays for service. I have only been inside once before and that was many years ago.

On a Sunday I made my way to the church early and enjoyed sitting on the stairs outside the church, reveling in the knowledge that this is a very special place for my family.

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Once I stepped inside the church a welcoming lady directed me to the pile of Hymnal books. I sat down and I waited for service to start. People continued to trickle in and I was happy to see some families with young children in attendance. I tried to picture the Jeffrey family sitting for service and fellowship.

And then the organ played. What a fantastic sound that echoed through the room. A few tears gathered at the corner of my eye as I allowed myself to bask be in the moment.

After service, I took a few minutes to photograph the interior as I don’t know when I will be back. Upon leaving I was welcomed to have fellowship after in the Manse but my travel companions were waiting, maybe next time.

Pictures of the interior of the church


Hannah Pozer Jeffery

Part three of a series I am writing about the Jeffery sisters. If you want to read more Part I & Part II are here.

Hannah was almost a New Years baby, as she was born Dec. 30, 1832, in Quebec City.  At her baptism, the following month which took place at St. Andrew’s Church, Alexander Jaffrey (likely her brother) and Mary Fletcher became her godparents.

In the 1852 census, Hannah at nineteen is working as a servant at the home of William White an accountant. The White family lived in a two story house, with parents Mary & William, two young children, a sixteen-year-old young man as well as another servant Mary Ganatry from Ireland.

Jeffery, Hannah 1851 census closeup

Hannah Jeffery in the White household in the 1852 Canadian census.

In 1854 at St. Andrews Church, Hannah married a ship Captain from Great Yarmouth, England, Richard Lee Norton. Her younger sister Elizabeth along with her husband George Robertson were witnesses.

Hannah’s life seems fairly straightforward compared to her sisters, she had eight children, six boys, and two girls. Alfred the youngest son died at the age of eight of Arthritis and her daughter Elizabeth succumbed to the flu at the age of 34.

I have found the name of only one of the ships her husband captained and that was a steamer ship The Montmorenci, which was mentioned in their son Thomas’ baptism in 1857.

In the 1891 Canadian census, the Norton family is living in Montcalm Ward, Quebec City. Hannah is listed as the wage-earner, working as a caretaker,  her husband Richard, age 77 is unemployed. Hannah is the only one in the household who cannot read or write, her sons still at home are working as a beer bottler and Express driver.

In 1893 Hannah’s husband Richard passes away and is buried at Mount Hermon Cemetery.


1893-10-30 QuebecMorningChronicle

Quebec Morning Chronicle Oct. 30, 1893


I am told Hannah and her daughter Caroline never lived apart, when Carrie married Peter Jordan in 1900 I assume Hannah joined them.

The Jordan family moved to Montreal about 1910 and seven years later at the age of 84 Hannah passed away.


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Clipping from my grandmother’s scrapbook


Her body was brought back to Quebec City for burial with her husband Richard at Mount Hermon Cemetery.

Norton headstone

Norton stone in Mount Hermon Cemetery ca 1930

*No matter how much I have searched on various record sites Hannah is still ‘missing’ in the 1901 & 1911 censuses. One thought is she could have been visiting her children on the night the census taker came knocking and was missed.

Margaret Jeffery

This is the second part in a series I am writing on the Jeffery sisters.

When I first started researching the Jeffery family I had no idea how I would be drawn to Margaret’s story, it may be because I was able to learn many details about the trials in her life, which was possible with the release of the Quebec Notary records on Ancestry. With the help of Ancestry, I was able to uncover details of Margaret’s life that had long been forgotten.

Margaret Stock[w]ell Jeffery was born 1832 to parents Robert and Elizabeth Tipper. Margaret was their fifth child, with only two of her older siblings still living.

Margaret was baptized Nov. 1, 1832, in St. Andrew’s Church, Quebec City and lived in that city for most of her youth. At the age of seventeen, she married an Englishman, George Grey Humphry who was Captain of the aptly named ship The Margaret.

HUMPHREY George m. Margaret Jeffery

In the 1840s there was a regular shipping route between Torquay, England and Quebec City. Passengers were brought to Quebec on timber ships like The Margaret and the return journey brought wood to England where it was in high demand. [1]

After doing some digging I discovered that after her marriage Margaret moved to Devon, England, the home of her husband. A journey across the sea to a new life, I can picture Margaret standing onboard the ship with her face in the wind sailing towards her future.

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Screenshot highlighting the distance between Quebec City and Totnes, Devon. I think the journey would have been quite a bit longer by boat in 1847.

The Humphrys settled near Totnes in Devon, Margaret had a lot to adjust to as her husband would have been gone for months at a time on his voyages. The children started arriving and with Margaret’s family far away, the letters back and forth would have been greatly anticipated.*

Their first child was George who arrived in 1851 but died the following year. The next two children were daughters, Emily arrived in 1854 and Margaret Adelaide (aka Addie) in 1856. Two years later the girls were baptized at St. Andrew’s Church back in Canada. Why did they return? The baptism record answers that question, Margaret was a widow and why George died has yet to be discovered.

Times were tough for a single mother with limited ways of earning an income. In 1859 Margaret gave up the right to raise her girls, Notary Leon Roy (document No. 2618), drew up the agreement between her and La communauté des Soeurs de la Charité (Sisters of Charity Community) also commonly referred to as the Grey Nuns (Soeurs Grises) [2]. At the time Emily and Addie were only five and three years old. A moment that would tear at any parent’s heart.

In 1861 while at the Hotel Dieu Hospital in Quebec City Margaret is again meeting with a Notary. This time she is moving the girls to the Ladies Protestant Home of Quebec. This home was located at 95 Grande Allée Ouest.  I am not sure why she would move the girls from one institution to another, one possibility is the Ladies Home was newly established.

A portion of the Notary document reads that Margaret

doth relinquish and renounce all paternal authority and continual that she now has or might hereafter have or pretend to over the said two minor children in any manner or may whatsoever from this day until they respectively attain the aforesaid age of eighteen years

The document also states that the girls will be provided with clothing, lodging, education and medical attention as needed as per “their station in life”. Their religious education will follow the doctrine of the Church of England and they will conform and comply with the rules and regulations of the institution. The girls were ages five and three.


Ladies’ Protestant Home, rear view: Quebec Gouvernement; Inventaire des oeuvres d’art A-4; circa1950. Photograph used with permission

1864 brings hope when Margaret walks down the aisle a second time. Her husband is James Atkins from Ohio, a civil war veteran. Three children are born to the couple, daughter Fannie and son Henry in Montreal and after a move to New Jersey, daughter Lillie is born.

You may wonder what happened to the Humphry girls, Margaret was able to return to the Home and claim them once and for all. The joy that day must have been overwhelming for all of them.

The Atkins family eventually settles in New York where they are all found on the 1875 census with James working as a printer.

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Atkins family, Brooklyn Ward 21, Kings, New York, USA,

Emily is noticeably absent from the household, she married the same year to Constantine Philips, a painter by trade.

The happiness for Margaret doesn’t last, three years later she dies in New York, making her time with her family fleeting and so precious.

James Atkins marries again, another girl from Quebec, Esther Martin. The Atkins family makes a final move to San Juan, Washington which is where James dies in 1900.

With some research I have found descendants of Margaret’s, her story had been lost to them over time.

Not anymore.


  1. Seeking a Better Future: The English Pioneers of Ontario and Quebec by Lucille H. Campey

2.  This document was in French and I am grateful to expert Sharron Callaghan for her help in interpreting it as well as offering an understandable interpretation of the legal jargon. I am continually grateful for her assistance in my Quebec research.

-More reading on the Sisters of Charity in Quebec

-More reading on the Ladies Protestant Home of Quebec

Caroline Jeffery

Caroline Jeffery was born to parents Robert Jeffery & Elizabeth Tipper on April 22, 1821 in Quebec City. She was baptized on the second day of May of the following year in St. Andrew’s Church. Her godparents were John McCourt and Catherine Chamberland.

St. Andrews Church, Quebec City

St. Andrews Church, Quebec City – 2016

The Jeffery family moved around a bit as Caroline’s father Robert worked as a stone mason traveling to wherever he was hired. When Caroline was 13 years old the Jeffery family was living in St. Etienne, Beauce as their father was building a mill for George Pozer. The next record (if I could find it) for Caroline would be when she married Frederick Yeates/Yates about 1840, she would have been 18 years old. Frederick possibly was a militia volunteer for the British Army as this name shows up on Muster Rolls at Ancestry.

The young couple had two daughters both named Elizabeth. The first Elizabeth was born in 1841, and baptized on the same day as her aunt, Julia Heathfield Jeffery.

Yates & Jeffery Baptisms 1841 zoomed.png

Jeffery & Yeates baptisms at St. Andrew’s Church, Quebec City May 24, 1842 as found on

The death of little Elizabeth has not been found but another Elizabeth was born to Caroline and Fred in 1845. She died two years later in 1847, her father’s occupation is noted as a merchant.

Shortly thereafter Fred also died although no record of his death has been located.

In 1851 Caroline (Jeffery) Yates marries James McKay in Montreal’s Erskine Presbyterian Church.

1859 brought another attempt for children with the arrival of baby Caroline in Cleveland, a village close to Richmond, Quebec. She did not live very long, and a son James followed her but it is likely he only lived a few days.

In the 1871 census the McKay’s are living in Richmond, and I finally learn a little about Caroline’s husband, his occupation is a painter and he was born in Ireland about 1819. A painter leaves me with the question, did he paint houses or was he an artist?

The 1881 census does not reveal anything new about the couple.

Caroline dies May 20, 1885, I am still looking for the record of her death, she is buried in Saint Anne’s Cemetery, Richmond, Quebec.


The Rebekah Collection Pt.1

I am in possession of my grandmother Beatrice (Jordan) Dever’s papers that consist of numerous items from her involvement with the Rebekah Assembly in Quebec,  the female branch of the I.O.O.F. Her passion for this organization led her to numerous positions throughout her lifetime and I know she was especially proud to serve as the International President in 1957-1958.

Going through this collection I realize that there is probably items of interest to people outside of our family. I am looking to donate her papers, photographs, and other items to an archive in the future, but for the moment I thought I would share some of the things that may have a wider appeal.

The first item I want to share is a listing of the members whose names were on the Charter of Cresent Lodge No.18 in Montreal which was organized on Oct. 1, 1907. A quick google search did not turn up more information on Cresent Lodge.

*This information is from a list that is handwritten and any transcription errors are from me deciphering the writing. I wish full names had been listed but this is how it appears on the sheet. I have organized them alphabetically by surname.


Bannister, Miss C
Barrie, Miss R
Beck, Miss I
Beckwell, Miss A
Brown, Miss A
Brown, Miss J
Brown, Miss M
Brown, Miss R
Bruce, Miss I
Buxton, C.W.
Carson, Miss M
Cooper, Miss M
Cooper, W.
Dickson, A.W.
Dickson, DJ – PGM
Dickson, Miss I
Dodds, Miss L
Doherty, Mrs. RJ
Doherty, R.J.
Dorion, Dr. W.A.
Earls, L.H.
Etienne, Dr. A.A.
Etienne, Miss AL
Etienne, Miss LM
Etienne, Mrs. AL
Farlinger, Mrs. A
Fels, D. PG & Mrs. PP
Ferguson, Miss C.
Ferguson, Miss S.
Garland, M.B.
Glennie, John PG
Glennie, Mrs. J
Goodall, Miss B
Gorham, C.F.
Greeley, Mrs. E
Greenhalgh, R.
Higginbotham , C. PG
Hudson, Miss FM
Ives, C.K. PG
Kennedy, Mrs W
Kennedy, W – Grand Chaplain
Knowles, Miss A
Knowles, Miss R
Laurin, Mrs AR
Leacock, I.M.
Lenioyne, Mrs. E
Loveday, Miss E
Lyster , L.J. PG
Mackay, Miss I
McBride, G.M.
McGowan, W.J.
Morrison, Miss J
Morrow, Mrs. MJ
Norkett, W.L.
Norkett,Mrs. WK
Olssen, Miss A
Owen, Mrs. E Pearl
Paton, Miss M
Patton, Mrs WH
Place, C.A.
Poole, Miss B
Potter, FJ – Grand Secy
Priest, D.N.
Prowse, Miss L
Pryde, Miss R
Racey, C.A.
Rintoul, J.L.
Rintoul, Miss MB
Rintoul, Miss MV
Robinson, W.W.
Roxborough, Miss A – PNG
Russell, Miss L
Russell, Miss M
Sears, J.O.
Shirlow, J -GM
Skelcher, I. H.  PG & Mrs. PP
Smith, D.G.
Smith, J.S.
Stevenson, A. J. PG
Strong, IV
Sullivan, J.  PG
Sunderland, Mrs. WE
Sunderland, W.E.
Temple, L.B.
Temple, Mrs. LB
Weippert, C.N.
White, F.C.




The Census-Taker Missed Them

My Friday night fun was reading through The Weekly Chronicle on the BAnQ website (Quebec archives) and I came across this letter to the editor –

The weekly CHronicle Sept 8 1891

The Weekly Chronicle Sept. 8, 1891.


Sir, – Reading Mr. Lortie’s letter in yesterday’s Chronicle, reminds me that I was never called on by the census official.  This makes three more unregistered citizens, and I have no doubt many more can tell the same tale.                                                                 I enclose my card,                                                                                                                               Yours Truly,                                                                                                                                          St. Ursule Street                                                                                                                    Quebec, 8th Sept., 1891

This may be the answer to my never-ending quest to find Samuel Jordan in earlier Quebec City census records.


Wordless Wednesday 

Princess Elizabeth visits Drummondville, 1951.

Princess Elizabeth visits Drummondville, 1951

I also found this video on You Tube of the future Queen’s 1951 visit to Canada. Maybe I can find a video of when she was in Drummondville and spot my father and his parents in the crowd!

These pictures are from a few slides that have been passed on to me from my father.

Following the Prompt

I have decided to participate in the #52stories project that Family Search is promoting. They have created prompts encouraging people to write about themselves and their experiences.

Initially, I felt that I didn’t have a lot to write about, I didn’t grow up saddling a horse to get to school or have personal stories about war or take part in a world event, but I was happily surprised after writing today on the first prompt. I realized do have my own stories to tell, they may not be huge events in the world but they are my stories and may be interesting to someone in the future. The prompt I started with was “What is your earliest memory of feeling proud of yourself -at school, in sports, in art or music, in a club or scouting?”

I went to my Evernote and created a Notebook and called it #52Stories,  each entry will be a note within that notebook. I also downloaded the prompts as a pdf file and added them to the same Notebook. Once I started writing I realized I would like to highlight some of my memories by adding photos.

Here is one of the entries I made for the first prompt – My earliest memory of feeling pride was in grade 1, I was attending McCaig school in Rosemere, Quebec. There was a draw for a radio, I am not sure how we entered the draw if we received tickets for good behavior or had to sell something. No matter, I was thrilled that my name was chosen which meant I was the recipient of the Sesame Street Ernie bubble bath radio. I remember loving the duckie he was holding and hurrying home after school to share my good fortune with my parents. Everyone was quite happy for me and Ernie had a place of honour in my bedroom. I can recall spending quite a bit of time playing with the dial trying to connect to a station. I am not sure what happened to the radio after we moved but it seems there are a lot of things that did not make the move to Alberta.

A quick search in google images and I was able to find my Ernie radio! I added the photograph to my entry as otherwise, nobody would know how awesome Ernie looks relaxing in the bubbles playing with his duckie!51ip6gmr2il-_sx300_

I realize this post is more personal but hopefully, it will encourage my readers to take the time to write about their lives. I for one would love to know some of the stories about the day to day lives of my ancestors!

Maps, Genealogy & Directionally Challenged Me

I am a directionally challenged person (my family gets a kick out of me getting lost leaving my hotel room) so I have generally avoided maps in my research. I may look things up quickly (thank goodness for google maps!) but I haven’t gone deeper.

Well, that is changing. With some wonderful advice from a knowledgeable researcher/author who has taken me under her wing, (Sharon you are my hero) I am getting better.

Today I wanted to find out more about the locations where my family was living in Quebec City in 1900. As per the wonderful instructions I was given I clicked over to the Quebec Archives website  Digital Maps and Plans Collection and I was determined to figure this out! (plus no one was watching to laugh at my missteps).

I am going to walk you through what I did with some screenshots for easier explanation. I started at the home page and under ‘Choose a Collection’ I selected ‘Plans de villes et villages du Quebec’.home-page-banqscreen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-58-51-pm

I then chose the letter “Q” from the ‘Tous’ title and received three choices: ‘Region’, ‘Quebec, Quebec’ or ‘Quyon’. I chose number 2 which brought me to this brought up quite a few choices but I was looking for a map close to the 1900 date so I went with the Insurance plan of the City of Quebec 1898.

This opened up a series of thumbnails, I did notice the first thumbnail was an index and where I wanted to start.  Knowing that the family I was looking for was living on Conroy street I selected the Full-Screen option for easier reading. Once the fullscreen was open it was a matter of finding Conroy in the alphabetic list. Reading across from Conroy it indicated I needed Map 29.index-to-1898-map-sections

And wouldn’t you know it… here is the street that my great grandfather Peter Jordan was living on in the late 1890s and early 1900s. Not only that, but his father was living around the corner on St. Amable.


Iris Catalogue number: 00030028680 Link: http//

I am not done, my wonder-guide Sharon tells me that although I know where they lived in order to locate land records I will need to know what the Lot & Block number is. One thing always leads to another in genealogy.

At this point, I am surprised that my directionally challenged self made it this far!

Working on Ships in 1800s

Jeremiah Norton was a carpenter on various ships throughout his career. Jeremiah was born in Great Yarmouth on the 29th of August in 1781, he stood a modest 5’4″ and set sail in 1805 at the age of 24 years. An anchor and a half moon tattoo was proudly displayed on his left hand.

When he first went to sea he was already married, Elizabeth Sharp was a widow with a son. They married at Great Yarmouth in St. Nicholas Church (image of the Church in 1848).

I was able to locate baptisms for five of his children, Mary Ann, Lee Thomas, Richard Lee, Martha and Edward from the years 1811-1825. During this time I assume he was often away on his sea voyages.

With help, I have located seven of the ships he sailed on; Agenoria, Medora, Elizabeth, Cygnet, Campbell, Lang and his final ship was the Norma in 1846. The majority of the destinations of these ships were Jamaica, but the Cygnet took Jeremiah to Quebec in 1838.

Jeremiah and his family eventually left Yarmouth and relocated to Shadwell, near London.  Jeremiah died at sea on the Norma when he was 65 years young and left a love of shipping to his sons. Edward went to sea when he was 14, Lee Thomas/Thomas Lee in 1831 and Richard worked on ships in England and later Quebec City where he resided.


Photo found on Pixabay