The remainder of this article is taken from one in Wikipedia.
The first inhabitants of the Edgeley area came from Somerset County, Pennsylvania, circa 1800. Early family names were Smith, Stong, Shunk, Hoover, Burkholder, Muskrat, Snider, Brown, and Dalziel. A Mennonite church, built of logs in 1824 on the northern portion of Lot #7, Concession #4, was one of the first churches built in Vaughan Township. A steam-powered shingle mill stood on the northwest corner of Highway 7 and Jane Street. A hotel was located on the northeast corner, with a general store on the southeast corner. The store contained the Edgeley post-office from 1872-1960. Just south of the store, Samuel Snider operated a horse-powered cider mill. His son-in-law, Abraham Winger, and Abraham's brother Henry later took over the business, putting up a new steam-powered mill and producing apple cider, butter and jelly until the early 1900s.
The area was also served by a blacksmith, a shoemaker, a casket maker, a dressmaking establishment, a chopping mill, a woodworking shop, which supplied wagons and buggies, two slaughterhouses and a community hall. The Edgeley Farmers' Club was organized in 1917, and for years the farmers in the area obtained their supplies of coal, binder twine, salt and other necessities through the club. The club's annual oyster supper was one of the community's social highlights.
Edgeley was famous for fruits, mainly apples, thereby supporting many of the settlers who worked its fertile lands. Almost the entire landscape of Edgeley was covered in fruit trees, most notably around what is now known as Edgeley Boulevard. Because of the fertile lands, great success came to the town's settlers, and today, many streets in and around Edgeley have been named after them and their products.
The primary source for basic documents (vital statistics, land records, wills) for people who lived in the Province of Ontario is the Archives of Ontario, 134 Ian Macdonald Blvd, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M7A 2C5.
Civil registration did not begin in the province until 1869. Before then there may be church records of baptisms and burials. For the most part these are still held by the denomination who recorded them. Copies of marriage records made pre-1869 had to be sent by individual clergymen to the registrar of the county in which the marriage took place. These marriage records are available through Ontario Archives, on micorfilm through LDS libraries, and on paid and unpaid websites, but because they were copied at the registrars' offices, they cannot be considered a primary source.
Vital Records after 1869
Birth, marriage and death registrations are not open to the public until a specific number of years after the event occurred. Births to 1915 are now available [October 2014]; dates for marriages and deaths are later. Birth and death registration was not universally carried out in the early years after its adoption. Deaths were more apt to be reported than births for several years. The more rural the area, the less likely it would be that these happenings were reported to the authorities.
Land Records and Wills
Information on how to access land records and wills is best sought on the Archives of Ontario website. An ancestor's land holding might be found on Canadian County Atlas Digital Project if he was in occupancy circa 1878.
Association for the Preservation of Ontario Land Registry Office Documents (APOLROD). A list of Land Registry Offices for all Counties of Ontario.
The original censuses are in the hands of Library and Archives Canada, known to Canadians as "LAC". Copies of original microfilms are online at the LAC website for all censuses up to 1911. Each census database is preceded with an explanation of the geographical area covered, the amount of material retained (some census division material has been lost), the questions on the census form, and whether there is a name index. Census divisions were redrawn as the population increased and more land was inhabited. The 1921 census is only available through Ancestry.ca, but it is free-to-view.
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