Last updated: 22 Feb 2018
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An original copy of the 1919 Temperance Referendum Voters List survives. It is an inch-plus thick, typeset, poll-by-poll list of adults enumerated in Norfolk County in the late summer/early fall of 1919, as soldiers were returning from World War I oversea service.
Many (not all) entries include the voter's occupation and/or street address as well as name.
Organized by voting poll, the Voters List is a series of smaller poll lists (each providing more than 150 names, some over 300), that collectively
cover tens of thousands of adults living in Norfolk that year.
Mailing addresses provided in this Voters List do not always align with place names for the same people in other B-M-D Etc. entries from other sources, which are assumed to be more precise. Some, but not all, addresses in the voters list are also identified by lot, concession and township, more precisely identifying a person's location.
By 1919 the great majority of the 200-acre land grants given Norfolk's first settlers had been subdivided several times as the homesteads were passed down to multiple descendants. Consequently, most 1919 Lot and Concession addresses were shared by multiple families. Some had become hubs for small rural communities.
Some mailing addresses reference communities located in other townships. Others reference communities such as Hagersville, Jarvis, Port Burwell, Norwich, Scotland, Staffordville, Tillsonburg and Vienna, that are near Norfolk's borders but actually in neighboring counties.
Glen Meyer was listed as "Glenmyer" and "Glenmeyer." Those living in or near communities without post offices have mailing addresses which reference a nearby community with a post office. Clear Creek include residents of other communities, such as Cultus. Some residents of Goshen and Rhineland are listed under "Delhi"; other residents of Rhineland are listed under Wyecombe. Voting poll boundaries do not align with mailing addresses or anything else that we could identify.
We began transcribing individual entries found in this massive collection of lists directly into our Births Marriages Deaths Etc. Index in Jul 2007 and finished in May 2008 -- this effort being the largest single addition to B-M-D Etc. ever undertaken.
A copy of the source document is available for inspection at the Eva Brook Donly Museum.
Several people documented in other
historical sources with the middle initial L appear in this source document
and consequentially this Index with the middle initial T.
The Simcoe Reformer was previously called the Norfolk Reformer. (The 1890s name change was gradual as alternating issues carried either banner for a while.) Events from issues bannered Norfolk Reformer are identified in this transcription indexed as [NR] as in [NR18670711] for the Norfolk Reformer of 11 Jul 1867. The same newspaper was originally called the Erie News [EN] in the early 1860s.
Another newspaper used
as a source document for B-M-D Etc. was the
A third newspaper, The British Canadian, was published in Simcoe at the turn of the last century. Norfolk Historical Society volunteers have indexed all names that appeared in several years of this newspaper. References to their index of B-M-D for 1906 and some of 1907 have been added to B-M-D Etc. to provide leads to people/events the Reformer may have missed. These references are tagged BC (for example, BC19061127), and include only name, type of event, and publication date. Many other issues of The British Canadian found on microfilm at the Eva Brook Donly Museum are also indexed in B-M-D Etc.
The Waterford Star was founded by P. J. Pearce, 19 Jun 1874. About 20 years later P. George Pearce succeeded him. P. G. Pearce founded the Pearce Publishing Co. in 1922, brought his sons into the business, and purchased The Simcoe Reformer. Events from issues of the Waterford Star are tagged WS (for example WS18861202) for the issue of 2 Dec 1886.
The Norfolk Observer [NO] was established in 1840 by William Mercer Wilson, who sold it in 1842 to J. H. Davis, who renamed it The Long Point Advocate. Most copies of Norfolk Observer reviewed to date do not include Birth Marriage Death columns, but they provide other content of interest, such as ads by local merchants and manufacturers, lists of those with mail waiting to be picked up at the post office in Simcoe, etc.
There were other newspapers through the years, in Delhi, Port Rowan and Tillsonburg. For the most part they have not been indexed herein.
Cemetery stone transcriptions play a growing roll as a source of data for our index. There are two large community cemeteries in Norfolk: Oakwood Cemetery in Simcoe and Greenwood Cemetery in Waterford. There are also significant cemeteries at Delhi and Port Dover. and community cemeteries in smaller centres. Churchyards across the county served as cemeteries in the past and some are still used. Pioneer burying grounds can be found on dozens of homestead farms. There are about 130 cemeteries in Norfolk. Directions to many are included in our captions of cemetery stone photos. Also see our cemetery videos.
[Acacia] is North Middleton Baptist
Cemetery at Acacia in Middleton
Divisional Register for Charlotteville
The Divisional Register was kept by township clerks to comply with the Vital Statistics Act of 1869. Although unsigned by the bride and groom, each Register entry provides personal descriptions of the bride and groom, i.e. age, status, occupation, place of birth, religion, and names of parents.
The Divisional Register for Charlotteville survives and is available for inspection in the Reading Room of the Norfolk Historical Society Archives at the Eva Brook Donly Museum in Simcoe, Ontario. This source has been used to augment the data found in local newspapers and other sources.
Charlotteville Births 1876-1900
Original Charlotteville Birth Registration Ledgers survive and are available for inspection in the Reading Room of the Norfolk Historical Society Archives at the Eva Brook Donly Museum in Simcoe, Ontario. This source has been used to augment the data found in local newspapers and other sources.
Lynedoch Cemetery Caretaker's Records [LCL]
Norfolk Historical Society Archives include tombstone transcriptions and other records of Norfolk County cemeteries. Among these we found the Lynedoch Cemetery caretaker's log, which lists the name, gender, date of burial, and occasionally other data about those buried in this Charlotteville township Cemetery.
Note that there were two cemeteries in Lynedoch and the caretaker's log seems to reference other cemeteries, so researchers are advised to check the original source document themselves, both to confirm data transcribed from this log herein, and to pursue other log data not transcribed here. Some entries in this handwritten log were difficult to read. Entries from this log end with the source tag [LCL].
Old Woodhouse Church: The Cradle of Methodism in the Long Point Settlement, edited by Twila and Roger Cruickshank, published 1999 by Laser Tec. Print and Design, Vittoria, Ontario. 290 pages, hardcover. ISBN 0-9684647-0-X
"Woodhouse United" (originally "Woodhouse Methodist") Church, was built in 1801, about four miles south of present day Simcoe, Ontario, and equal distance inland from Lake Erie at Port Ryerse (due south) or Port Dover (southeast). Its churchyard cemetery was the burying ground for some of the district's earliest settlers and their descendants.
Old Woodhouse Church celebrates 200 years of Methodism in Norfolk, with stories and illustrations (drawings, photos, etc.) of church members and activities through the years. Pages 254-279 alphabetically list everyone known buried in this cemetery. The list includes columns for: name of deceased, birth and death dates, cemetery location of grave, spouse's name or comment, father's name and mother's name.
While this cemetery transcription will be a boon to some researchers, we caution that it is a 1999 re-creation, not an original historical document; and as such is best used as a road map for your own investigation. Entries sourced from Old Woodhouse Church are identified with the index code [OWC].
Old Woodhouse Church cemetery listing covers a 200 year period. Only a very limited subset of records for the time period covered by local newspaper Births Marriages Deaths columns appear here. Old Woodhouse Church is the only known source for a complete listing.
St. John's Registers
"St. John's, Woodhouse" (Anglican) Church was established south of Simcoe, northwest of Port Dover, northeast of Vittoria, and northwest of Port Ryerse, in Norfolk County's Woodhouse Township in the early 1820s. For much of the next half century, St. John's Woodhouse registers and churchyard cemetery documented many south Norfolk baptisms, marriages and burials.
Several of these registers survive and have been microfilmed. These microfilms are available for viewing at the Eva Brook Donly Museum in Simcoe, and were the source for entries ending "[St. John's Registers]."
An abbreviated transcription of St. John's Woodhouse registers on microfilm by William Yeager; St. John's Anglican Church, Woodhouse, Parish Registers, 1830-1851, 1885-1948 is available for sale from the Norfolk Historical Society at Eva Brook Donly Museum, 109 Norfolk Street South, Simcoe, Ontario, for $12 plus $2 postage.
St. John's Woodhouse is still
active today and more recent genealogical events have been documented, although not
microfilmed. Photocopies of these records are available for inspection
in the Reading Room of the Norfolk Historical Society's Archives at the
Eva Brook Donly Museum in Simcoe.
Simcoe Presbyterian Records
As detailed elsewhere on this site, Presbyterians can trace their Norfolk County roots back to 1793. Unfortunately, few records from the first half century survive. The first significant records are those of Rev. Martin Livingstone of St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, Simcoe. Those records were merged with those of St. Paul's Presbyterian Church, Simcoe when the congregations merged. Collectively, they were erroneously called "St. Paul's Presbyterian Register" when microfilmed. We used this microfilm and photocopies of church records supplied by William Brock Jackson as input to this index.
William R. Yeager produced an
abbreviated transcription of these microfilmed records, Presbyterian
Church Records, Simcoe, 1849-1906: St. Andrew's Church & St. Paul's
Church in 1981. Copies of this transcription are available from The
Norfolk Historical Society, Eva Brook Donly Museum, 109 Norfolk Street
South, Simcoe, Ontario, for $4 plus $1 postage.
George J. Ryerse Marriage Register
Elder George Joseph Ryerse of Woodhouse Township in the London District, himself a son of a Long Point Settlement pioneer, married the children of many early settlers between 1831 and 1857, dutifully maintaining his Marriage Register.
This Register survives!
A transcript was published in the 14 Mar 1901 and
Maylin's Tillsonburg Observer Index
Len and Flossie Maylin indexed many Norfolk resources in the early 1980s, including births, marriages and deaths announced in Tillsonburg newspapers between Confederation and the turn of the century (1867-1899), as found on microfilm in the Archives at the Norfolk Heritage Centre in Simcoe.
In late 2003 we supplemented this Births Marriages Deaths Etc. Index with a Norfolk
County only subset of the Maylins' work, beginning with births recorded
in the Tillsonburg Observer, which end herein with the code [TO].
(The Maylin transcript includes births from other places, most notably
Elgin and Oxford Counties.) The only way
to pursue these records is by visiting the Norfolk Heritage Centre, and examining them
A small but growing series of source
documents have been submitted by site visitors. These submissions vary from scans
of a marriage certificate to transcriptions of Family Bibles. Each linked
page includes the submitted material and contact information (typically an
email address) for that contributor. Our thanks to those who share so all
Not every ancestor wrote a will and
not all of the wills written were probated.
Some wills are barely a page long and
provide little genealogy. Others go on for pages (one we found was 29
handwritten pages) and provide more insight into possessions than family. But wills can
narrow the range of possible death dates as they were typically probated the
year of (or year following) death. Wills also tend to provide a list of surviving
descendants, and point toward other resources worth exploring (such as "my son
Dennis, now living in Denver.")