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   Ontario, Canada   
(Upper Canada, Canada West)
Concerns more than one County

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BOOK - Smith's Canadian Gazetteer, Canada West [Ontario] 1846
By WM. H. Smith
Originally published by H & W Rowsell, Toronto, 1846
This edition by Global Heritage Press, Milton, 1999, 2010 [CD 2010]

Hardcover... 58.95 (C$)
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The primary purpose of a gazetteer, for many modern researchers, is to identify a place by name, its location, and some details about the place, as they were known at the time that the gazetteer was compiled. This book serves that purpose very well, being the first major work of its kind in Canada West, a region that was previously known as Upper Canada (pre-1841), and later became Ontario (1867).

The time period (1846) that this book was originally published is of special interest to those who are researching families in early settlements in Ontario. Place names often changed, especially during the time when early post offices were established. Many hamlets, villages and towns took new distinct names, at the request of the Post Office, in order to avoid confusion between two villages with the same name. If the name changed prior to 1846, the gazetteer usually identified that change and when it happened. There were far fewer municipal name changes after 1846.

Mr Smith's reasons for compiling the gazetteer in 1846 were far different:
    In compiling this, the first Gazetteer of Canada West in 1846, William H. Smith declared that he was "induced to undertake the task by the great ignorance which he found to exist respecting the Province, not only amongst persons in Great Britain, or newly-arrived emigrants, but even amongst many of those who had been for years resident in the country; and from ascertaining that the various, contradictory, and occasionally false accounts given to emigrants on their arrival, respecting distant localities, frequently led them to alter their original intentions respecting their destination; and often induced them to leave the province altogether, and settle in the United States".
The entries in this gazetteer are organized alphabetically by place name. There are several instances when a place is listed both by its old name and its new name, or cross referenced from one to the other. Places include Districts (the largest land division - counties came later), townships, cities, towns, villages, hamlets. References to unincorporated settlements are also included.

Contents include:
  • References to the map - facing the fold-out map od Canada West [Ontario]

  • Canadian Gazetteer - Canada West [primary content of the book]
  • First Settlement; Its early history; climate and productions

  • Divisions and extent of the Province:
      Its progress and improvements; resources; trade agriculture; provisions for education; advice to emigrants; value of land; etc
  • List of Post Offices
  • List of Magistrates
  • Ministers of various denominations
  • Table of distances
  • List of Hotels, boarding houses, banks and governments offices, forwarders at Montreal
  • Omissions and errata
Entries in the book vary in detail and length based on available information and on the size and enterprise of the place. Some descriptions are a sentence or two, others go beyond a page. 314 Pages
1 Foldout Map [plus legend]
6.25" X 9.25"
Originally published by H & W Rowsell, Toronto, 1846
This edition by Global Heritage Press, Milton, 1999, 2010 [CD 2010]
ISBN 1-894378-12-1 (Hardcover)

More Canadian Genealogy & History Resources from Global Genealogy: Inc. 1992-2020
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