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Publisher: Laurel Katernick Vol. 2 Issue 1 03/18/2002

What's New On The Research Front

Welcome to the first on-line publication of the newsletter, so many of us have computers this may be an easier format. I will still be mailing out copies to those who do not have computer access.

I do not know where to begin, so much has happened since the last publication. By now most of you have seen the "NOW AND THEN GENEALOGY WEBSITE". If you have not and would like to click on this link NOW AND THEN GENEALOGY WEBSITE. Input and additions for the website are always welcome. If you have an ancestors page you would like added please contact me and one will be posted to the site.

Last August I attended Brigade Days at Historic Fort Langley in British Columbia, Canada. There I met Lisa Peppan web mistress of The Children Of Fort Langley site. Her site is dedicated to the descendants of the men who worked at Fort Langley, it contains a wealth of genealogical and historical information. Through Lisa's efforts last years Brigade Days were dedicated to the descendants of the men who worked at Fort Langley. I also met with my cousins Jill and Lynn and Lynn's wife Pat. This was the first time Jill and myself had met Lynn in person. We had been communicating with each other via email.

It was a fun filled weekend, complete with a parade for the descendants and an official welcoming ceremony from the Stol'o Nation. It was an emotional experience for us all. If you have ties to Fort Langley or the Fur Trade in general I recommend attending Brigade Days at Fort Langley, they are held the August long weekend. This years Brigade Days are very important historically because the Fort is celebrating its 175 year anniversary! To find out more about this years Brigade Days click on the following link The Children of Fort Langley.

Shortly after Brigade Days I was motivated to apply for my Metis card. It was decided that my mother and her brother would apply first (because they are the closest living descendants to the aboriginal ties.) We filled out their applications and sent them to the Northwest B.C. Metis Association in Terrace, British Columbia, Canada.

Initially their applications were not accepted because they did not meet the criteria for Metis as per the Society's constitutional guidelines. With the assistance of Shelley Ballinger of the Northwest B.C. Metis Association it was explained to me that societies in different Provinces have different criteria one must meet to be admitted for membership. Throughout B.C. the various constitutions are fairly consistent. This was something I had not known prior to my Mom applying for Metis membership.

In talking with Shelley Ballinger it was very  apparent she was genuinely interested in assisting our family in obtaining their Metis cards. Although she could not promise anything she put me in contact with Heather Hallett an author and Red River Genealogist, who has 15 years of Metis genealogical research experience. I collected up all the information, source documentation etc. and sent it off to Heather. She studied it very carefully and verified the information in the documents.  Mrs. Hallett then wrote a "professional opinion" which favoured us.

Our family were now able to re-apply for and receive their Metis membership cards! This is an important step forward in acknowledging a Metis heritage that has long been forgotten and ensuring that it is preserved for future generations. This long process also made me realize the importance of accuracy of information and source documenting genealogical research. I've never been so glad I source document all research as it definitely paid off in this case.

I learned that our family are quite special because there are very few Metis who have their aboriginal roots in B.C.. Most Metis trace their ancestry to the prairie provinces. On behalf of my family I would like to thank Shelley Ballinger and Heather Hallett for their kind sharing of knowledge and assistance in this matter.

In addition to the above I have made considerable progress on mine and my husband's maternal and paternal lines. All are equally exciting and encouraging. I have purchased a few books over the last few months, most of them relating to the Fur Trade and early pioneer history in British Columbia and the Prairie provinces. I've also acquired couple of copies of cemetery transcriptions and parish records. These have been extremely helpful in my research.

Please read through the newsletter to find out what else is new on the families being researched. There is to much include it in this portion of the newsletter. Any comments or suggestions for the newsletter are always appreciated. You can contact me through the email link at the bottom of the page.

LaFortune, Handy & Vautrin Families

There is always something new on this line of research. I had been researching extensively in Oregon State and have now backtracked to Vancouver Island. Just when I think I have exhausted all the resources for Vancouver Island another surname gets added or a new resource becomes available. The Gravelle surname has captured my curiosity and I was able to obtain a copy of an article on Francois Xavier Gravelle from the Victoria Genealogical Society. They have an extensive database of Victoria Pioneers. The collection consists of newspaper clippings, magazine articles etc. The article enabled me to make corrections on who was who in the Gravelle line. (Namesakes can be confusing.) This summer I hope to visit the Gravelle gravesites on the American Bar Indian Reserve outside of Hope, British Columbia, Canada.

I have been collecting information on the MacFarlane surname. Thanks to the help of descendants a web page for "James Francis Lennox MacFarlane Descendants" is in the making. Both the Gravelle and MacFarlane surnames are related to the Joseph LaFortune lines.

On the LaFortune front there are finally parish records available on microfilm through the LDS Family History Center for the parish of St Lin, Quebec, Canada. According to vital statistic registrations the LaFortune brothers, Francois Xavier and Joseph, were from St Lin. I've ordered the film for viewing and am anxiously waiting for them to arrive. If the family is in the records it will be the first time in three years of research that I will be able to confirm Francois Xavier and Joseph LaFortune's family information. Todate all of the information on their parents and siblings has been verified through the collection of "evidence". The "evidence" is information from different sources that indicates it is the right family. (In other words no concrete proof it is them) Hopefully these parish records will provide the concrete proof I'm looking for. I have been fortunate in that I only have a few families out of hundreds in my database that I only have "evidence" for. Rest assured I do not include those in my main databases. They remain in seperate ones until I collect a large number of pieces of "evidence" that have me convinced it is the right family or I find concrete proof. On this issue I'm not quick to assume it is the right family but at the same time I do not discard possibilities.


At the time of publication of this newsletter I have just finished looking at the first roll of the above mentioned microfilm! Success at last!!! I located Francois Xavier LaFortune on the parish records. It dispells any doubts or questions as to whether or not the family I thought was them is. Next week I will be looking at the second microfilm of the parish records and feel confident I will find Joseph LaFortune and their other siblings on it. I had just about given up on the first microfilm because I had only three more pages to go through out of almost 1000 entries and no LaFortune children or parents that looked like ours. Turns out Francois Xavier was on the third to last page!! What I located is his birth record, November-28-1852 St Lin, Quebec, Canada. It confirms his parents as Salomon Tellier dit Lafortune and Maire Louise Fisciault dit Laramee. The date of birth conflicts with the date of birth on his death registration. When I asked a reliable source for French Canadian research it was explained to me that the French were not to concerned with their date of birth. It was their date of baptism that they celebrated and as a result vital statistic registrations for deaths often have their baptismal date in place of their actual date of birth. My reliable source feels confident that if I order in the microfilm for the baptisms for St. Lin I will find Francois Xavier on there and that the baptism date will match what is recorded as the date of birth on his death registration. The same goes for Joseph LaFortune and all the other siblings.

There is a Tellier dit LaFortune genealogy site that has the descendants of the five main families that the Tellier dit LaFortune's descend from in Quebec. I used this site a couple of years ago to confirm that a Salomon Tellier dit LaFortune was married to a Marie Louise Fisciault dit Laramee. Now that I have confirmed through Francois Xavier LaFortune's birth record that these individuals are in fact his parents I can backtrack to the Tellier dit LaFortune site and find out who Salomon's parents are.

Whitwell, Mann & Maynard Families

This past summer I contacted one of my mother's cousins on the Whitwell side. We are fortunate that he lives only a few hours from us and was kind enough to come visit. His kind generosity enabled me to scan old photos of family for the website and add quite a few names to the database.

With these additions to the database I have located the Mann family in Stoke Damerel, Devonshire, England on an 1851 Census. From this information we now know that Susan Jane Mann's mother, Mary, was from Cawsand, Cornwall, England and her father, James Mann, was born in Bideford, Devonshire, England. All of the above has opened up many new leads to research.

Finally, after three years of researching, I have located the Whitwell's on the Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada 1891 Census. I have never been able to locate the family on the 1901 Census despite going through the entire Census four times. This is the first time locating the Whitwell's on a Canadian Census record.

Moore & Bartlett Families

The progress here is very slow. I've decided to send away for my Grandfather's birth registration and that of his parents and siblings. Given his age it is difficult for him to remember events that took place over eighty years ago.

I did contact his sister, my Great Aunt, and at ninety years old she has an amazingly sharp memory. I was very happy to find out she has an old family bible belonging to the Barlett's, her mother's side of the family.

With her help I discovered the following; the mother, Frieda Bartlett, died when the children were young, Frieda's father is Captain Isaac Bartlett, brother she thinks to Captain Bob Bartlett, the Moore family is not originally from England but Ireland, and her father, Walter Moore, was not born in England but Heart's Content, Newfoundland, Canada. When I asked who raised the children after the death of their mother, Frieda, she replied "Well dear we had maids of course.". I spoke with her for almost an hour on the phone and have made plans to visit her in the future to view the bible.

Again, it was wonderful to talk to family I've not spoken with in years. Our elder family members have a wealth of information they are usually willing to share with us. I love hearing about the "old times" and if any of you have elder family members to speak to do so. You won't be disappointed!

Hatton & Agar Families

I sent away for and received the Brookdale Cemetery transcriptions from the Manitoba Genealogical Society. The Brookdale Cemetery is in Holland, Manitoba, Canada. My Grandmother's family is from there. I've never used cemetery transcriptions for research prior to this and I have to say they are extremely useful. At least in this case here, I was able to locate the Hatton's and relatives in the records. They yielded much needed names and dates that helped sort out individual families.

On an added note I have obtained some old photos pertaining to the Hatton line, of which most appear to be taken on the Prairies. I think it is safe to assume they were taken in Holland, Manitoba. It is exciting to see photographs of the Hatton's as I had no idea until now what they looked like. Viewing old photographs always gives me a strong sense of the familial ties.

Tenold & Gronsberg Families

I've made progress here using the Sogne Og Fjordane Archive site. The photo database is providing many leads for this line of research. From it we have been able to conclude that Nils Gronsberg/Tenold, Andrew Tenold's brother, settled in Millard, Faulk County, South Dakota. He is in a photo with an Endre A. Seim, we wonder is maybe Nils married into the Seim family in South Dakota. Another photo states that Andrew Tenold first went to Ambrose, Divide County, North Dakota. I'll be investigating these leads over the next few months. Unfortunately there are no transcribed census records online yet for either of the towns the brothers settled in upon arrival in the U.S.A.

As mentioned above the Sogne Og Fjordane Archive site has been a great help with this line of research. I've been going through the photo database in depth. The comments on each photo yield much information. With the information I've been able to obtain dates of birth, marriage, death and emigration to North America. In some cases where the individuals settled. When people emigrated they often had a professional family portrait taken and sent this photo to family in the "motherland". Likewise a photograph was almost always brought of the "motherland". These photos are useful in placing the families because they often have the photographers name and in some cases the address on it. Genealogical societies and archives sometimes have a listing of local photographers for the area. These listings can be used to confirm the actual town where the photo was taken thereby placing the family.

Tenold Family

I located Helga Tenold and her family on the Ashley, McIntosh County, North Dakota 1900 Census. The census is located on the US GenWeb Census Project. I use this database extensively with good results. With the information I have collected I will be putting together a timeline for this line of research because it seems they moved through a few of the states in the U.S.A. and in some cases through several of the counties within a state. Tracking them without a reference guide can be a little confusing.

My mother was generous enough to lend me her 1910 World Atlas, which is getting lots of use. I had not used maps extensivley in researching. All that changed with researching this family because as mentioned above they moved through a few of the States and counties within the States. Maps have proven to be extremely useful.

The LDS site has put the Vital Stat records for Norway online. This is exciting addition to their site. It can be a little confusing searching because of the surnames. Norway has changed its naming practices several times over the last couple of hundred years, in fact they did so again recently. I have not been able to find Tenolds or Gronsbergs in the records. I'm guessing that they are under Ingbretson or Nilsdatr. I have a friend who has purchased the records on cd and has been kind enough to offer to search them for me.

Katernick & Koniuch Families

I sent out another "letter" this summer to a Katernick in Saskatchewan and as a result received the Katernick and Desjarlais family tree info! I opened up the package and there was a photo of Wade's great grandparents, Nikefor and Euphrosina Katerynych nee Koniuch. We had never seen a photo of them. Included was a photo of his grandparents Peter and Regina Katernick nee Desjarlais.

From this package we found out that Wade's greatgrandparents were from Zlota Bilcha, Galacia, Austria. I was now able to start searching for Zlota Bilcha, a village in what is now the Ukraine. What I thought would be an easy task turned out to take me almost five months of research. ( A little bit longer than I anticipated to find a village.) The research paid off and here is what I found out; BILCHE ZOLOTE(Bilcze Zlote, Bilche Zolotoye, Zlota Bilcha) is a tiny village in the district of BORSHCHIV, in the oblast (county) of Ternopilska. This oblast is located in the Western Ukraine. The village is so small I've never been able to locate is on a map, another researcher was kind enough to show me where it would be on a map.

This find leads me to my next project, I will be hosting the website for the Ternopilska Oblast on the Ukraine GenWeb. I will contact everyone one when the website is completed. One of the goals in taking on this project is that it will give me a better understanding of the history, language and culture of what is now the Ukraine. Researching in Eastern Europe is challenging and at the same time quite fascinating. My other main goal of the project is to share the Ukrainian roots this side of the family has.

I have made contact with a family member related to Pete Katerynych's sister, Paraska/Polly Tkatch nee Katerynch. This family member does not at present have any information on the Katerynych line that I currently do not have. It is encouraging though to connect with someone else researching the Katerynych surname.

I have been through several 1900 Censuses for towns in Saskatchewan with no luck in locating the family. A couple of the Censuses are in very poor shape, one in particular was not legible for the most part. My next angle will be to search to cemetery records in Saskatchewan and Ontario. There are Katernicks listed on the Ontario Cemetery Finding Aid. These are both excellent research databases.

I would like to thank all the Katernick family members who put together "The Katernick Family Tree" booklet for all their hard work. Without it the Nikefor Katerynych Descendants page would not have been possible on the family tree website nor would we know where his family was from.

Desjarlais Family

First of all discovering all the Metis heritage in this line of research is amazing. With "The Katernick Family Tree" booklet the Desjarlais line goes back to 1720 in Trois Rivieres, Quebec, Canada. Cuthbert Grant Jr., considered by many to be the first leader of the Metis, is Regina Katernick's (nee Desjarlais) great-grandfather. This Desjarlais line has the potential to be larger than the Vautrin line on my mother's paternal side which contains almost 600 individuals and goes back to the early 1600's in France. The information available online for this family is overwhelming. The majority of the initial research work has been done it is just a matter of importing the data from the online databases. The next step is obtaining copies of the scrip records, a new field of genealogy research for me. I will also be collecting as much original source documentation as I can to support the information contained in the online batabases.

In Closing

I have another research trip to Vancouver Island planned for after this years Brigade Days at Fort Langley. This trip will allow me to visit some of the locations related to my mother's maternal line. The last trip focused on her paternal line. The B.C. Archives in Victoria will be included on the list of places to visit. On the way home from the Island I will be stopping at the Surrey Public Library. Their genealogical section enables one to research all the Canadian provinces through a variety of resources. This will provide me with the opportunity to research the Newfoundland records. The B.C. Archives in Kamloops does not have any Newfoundland census records.

I would like to thank everyone who has contributed directly and indirectly to the ongoing research, the website and this newsletter. A special thanks to my cousin Dennice for her expert assistance and kind generosity without which the photos on the website would not look as wonderful as they do! I am very grateful to my parents for entrusting me with all those wonderful old photos.

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