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Highlighting and preserving Oakville’s history

September 22, 2017

Oakville Public Library’s (OPL) Local and Family History department is working on some exciting ventures to highlight and preserve the Town of Oakville’s history, as well as encourage community members to take interest in their own family history.

The season starts with OPL’s annual photo project on Sep. 23. A Day in the Life of Oakville is an engaging community initiative that invites residents to take photos of the town throughout the day and submit them into a gallery as historical documents.

Oakville is celebrating many significant anniversaries this year, including Canada’s sesquicentennial, the 50th anniversary of OPL’s Central Branch (Centennial Building), and the 40th anniversary of the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts, which are great subjects for participants to focus on and capture memories. Submission details for A Day in the Life of Oakville will be available online starting Sep. 23 and photos will be accepted from Sep. 23 to Sep. 30.

In light of the library’s upcoming anniversary, a free, all-ages celebration will be held on Dec. 2 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Central Branch Auditorium. More details about this event will become available on the library’s website.

OPL will hold its First Annual Family History Fair later this fall. Fair attendees will have the opportunity to drop in and speak with historical and genealogical groups and family history product vendors, as well as pre-register for free workshops with genealogical speakers. The event will run on Oct. 28 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and take place at the Queen Elizabeth Park Community & Cultural Centre.

The library has also recently released a series of videos focusing on moments in Oakville’s history. The initiative is helping to spread awareness about Oakville’s extensive lineage and share information on interesting historical events, organizations, and monuments. Six Oakville Heritage Moments are currently available to view on OPL’s YouTube page.

In addition to these special projects and events, OPL will be holding a great lineup of information sessions and workshops on genealogy and family history.

On Sep. 28, OPL will welcome Trish Keogh from Pictures in Place, a local photo organization business, to lead a session on photo organization and storytelling. The two-part workshop – second session to run on Oct. 26 – will provide participants with tips for preserving their family history through photos and will introduce them to new technology for sharing their collection.

Also in September, professional genealogist Tammy Tipler-Priolo, also known as The Ancestor Investigator, will present a lecture on how to conduct Quebec genealogical research. In this session – running on Sep. 30 – Tipler-Priolo will discuss the differences between historical records and provide information on reliable research tools.

Ruth Blair, a well-known local professional genealogist, will give a presentation on Nov. 23 to discuss modern day research for WWI veterans. Blair’s presentation will cover the different types of technology and resources available to help locate documents such as military service records.

Blair will return on Feb. 20 to conclude the season with an information session focused on the Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS). In this session, Blair will walk participants through the GPS and help decipher information they have uncovered.

OPL runs multiple programs on genealogy and history throughout the year and provides library cardholders with access to numerous resources for genealogical and historical research, including Ancestry Library Edition, a popular genealogy and DNA database.

The library will release next season’s programming in early 2018 – stay tuned for announcements on the launch of the Spring/Summer guide.

To sign up for a library card, please visit any OPL branch with your valid form of ID.

To learn more about the programs mentioned in this article, or to register for any of OPL’s upcoming Family History programs, please visit www.opl.ca.