Glen Williams is a hamlet in the Credit River valley in the province of Ontario, Canada. It is part of Halton Hills in the Halton Regional Municipality. The Credit River extends over 1500 km from the Niagara Escarpment, emptying into Lake Ontario at Port Credit, Mississauga. Glen Williams is also home to many species of birds, mammals and fish, with the river providing an exemplary habitat for them.
In 1825, Benajah Williams, a United Empire Loyalist of Welsh stock, purchased a 200 acre (0.8 km²) parcel of land in Esquesing township, on the Credit River. There he settled with his third wife and children.
By 1833, he had purchased another 200 acre (0.8 km²) parcel, giving him the 400 acres (1.6 km²) that became Glen Williams. The Williams' Mill is where the first industry stood, a saw mill built by Benajah and sons Joel and Charles in 1825. In the years to come, Benajah's son Charles became the leading figure in the community. Charles owned and operated the sawmill, and eventually he also owned the grist and woolen mills in the small community of Williamsburg, as it was then known.
A new industry was welcomed to the Williams Mill Visual Arts Centre; art. Since 1989, artists have dwelled in Glen Williams; some are jewellers, sculptors, potters and glassblowers.
In 1878 Joseph Beaumont built the Beaumont Knitting Mill which is now the Beaumont Mill Antiques & Collectibles market. The Beaumonts produced socks, blankets and mittens in this mill for over 100 years. Visitors can see the ongoing restoration work of the mill from the inside as they hunt for treasures in the diverse market.
Reeve & Clarke Fine & Rare Books are located in the restored storefront in which Timothy Eaton first worked in retail. The Glen Oven Bakery Cafe and The Copper Kettle Pub are also located in heritage storefronts. St. Alban the Martyr Anglican Church and St. John's United Church are historic buildings still used for worship, and are located on either side of the Credit River on Main Street.
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 1914 are now available [October 2012]; 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. All of the original census (1851-1911) images are online with the exception of that for 1861. Not all of them are indexed. Later censuses are not yet available. Census divisions were redrawn as the population increased and more land was inhabited.
E-books and Books
Some websites with more local information on Halton County