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A Bit More History, Since You Seem Interested!

Every man is his own ancestor, and every man is his own heir. He devises his own future, and he inherits his own past.” - Frederick Henry Hedge

If you look deeply into the palm of your hand, you will see your parents and all generations of your ancestors. All of them are alive in this moment. Each is present in your body. You are the continuation of each of these people.” - Thich Nhat Hanh

To forget one's ancestor's is to be a brook without a source, a tree without root.” - Chinese proverb

Since taking random peeks into slices of my history seemed to go over well before, I thought I'd give you another sampling or two. Just a short one for the weekend here.

This first one is a picture of my great-great-great-grandfather. I don't have an exact date when it was taken, but it would be sometime in the mid-1800's. I was amused at the notice at the bottom "Taken Instantaneously". I suspect that refers to some new picture-taking technique, because didn't people have to "freeze" into poses in order to get them to turn out? Any of you photo buffs know this one?

This next one is of the same fellow (he's changed his beard somewhat, though, which I also find interesting. Was hairstyle an issue back then? He is surrounded by his wife and family. The young lad on the left was born in 1854 and passed in 1887. The old man lived to be 90; he was born in 1822 and passed in 1912. The oldest lad, standing between his Mom and Dad is my great-great-grandfather. It seems so odd to look at a kid's picture like this and see four generations between him and I. He was born in 1852 and passed in 1947 at the ripe old age of 95. And then there's mama, born 1911, passed 1890 at age 79. Aunt Flo (standing beside the chair) was born in 1861 and passed in 1916, so my Mom probably met her (she was born in 1908). The baby (Robert Alan) didn't survive infancy. In fact, they had 5 kids who didn't make it past their second birthday. No health care I guess! (oh...bad Ricky,bad boy!)

....and now we move into legalizing it all. Here's a marriage certificate that reads as follows (it didn't scan too clearly...sorry about that!)

"This is to certify that Mr. John McKenzie of Brockville County of Leeds Province of Ontario Dominion of Canada and wife, Susan Black of Brockville County of Leeds, Province of Ontario, Dominion of Canada, were duly and lawfully married by me, Rev. Dennis Mulhern (?---not sure if I got that right), pastor of the Regular Baptist Church in Brockville this twenty sixth day of November, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy two, by virtue of a Special Licence, and the authority vested in me by the Law of the said Dominion of Canada.

As witness, my hand the day and yer hereinbefore written.

.....and here it is (click twice for best view):

This final one I find fascinating. It, too, is a wedding certificate, but it's entirely written in longhand by the pastor. I wonder if that was standard practice, or he had just run out of forms that day.

Look at the heading folks. "Ottawa, Dominion of Canada
July 23rd 1872."

That was only five years after Canada became a country!!!

The wording is a bit funnier in this one (i.e. "stiffer"). You can probably read it direct from the document if you blow it up, but just in case....

"I hereby certify that James Oliver, Bachelor, residing on Le Breton's Flat, Ottawa city, and Sarah Berthina Holgate, Spinster, also residing on Le Breton's Flat, Ottawa city, were married, with Licence, by me, in the Catholic Apostolic Church, Sally and Albert Streets, Ottawa city, on this, the twenty-third day of July, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy-two, in the presence of the bride's father, of Mr. Nathan William Curtis, and of Alfred Todd Esq. all of the same city of Ottawa.

Edward James William Roberts
Pastor and chief minister in
charge of the Catholic Apostolic

I hope you all have a wonderfully delightful weekend, whatever you've got planned.

(P.S. It just occured to me after I posted this and saw the date at the top that today would have been my folks 70th wedding anniversary. "I'm thinking of ya both today, folks. Luv ya!")


Isn't it interesting how they dressed then? The top button done is what seemed to be how it should be worn back then.

I love personal history. This was a very good post.

I can't get enough of these old documents. How sad about losing so many babies. We have an old cemetary here that I visit & there are literally entire families buried there due to influenza.

Neat! You are so lucky to be in possesion of all these documents! So often things like this get lost in the generations!

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