Little Britain is a "compact rural community" in the Township of Mariposa (township) in the former Victoria County, Ontario, Canada. Mariposa (township) became part of the City of Kawartha Lakes when Victoria County reorganized under that name in 2001.
A description of 19th-century Little Britain is to be found in the Mariposa Township article under "Communities".
Little Britain was established in 1834 by a man named Harrison Haight. He built the first mill in Little Britain in 1837. This mill, which stood until 1910, took nearly the whole countryside to build. At the time, there was no road that led from Little Britain to Oakwood, located 5 km to the north. In 1850 Christians came and built the first church. They were followed by the Bible Church in 1852. The Post Office came in 1853.
Prominent members of the time included Joseph Maunder's carriage and blacksmithing works, W.M Burden's carriage shop, Edwin Mark's foundry, Isaac Finley's steam roller flour mill, Dr George Wesley Hall MD and the Davidson's flour mill. The railway was brought into Lindsay around the turn of the century. This however, did little to advance Little Britain's economic output. In fact the population of Mariposa Township declined sharply between 1871-1920 from 3,132 to 2,231.
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 Victoria County