Spencerville is a village in the former township of Edwardsburgh in the Grenville part of United Counties of Leeds and Grenville in Ontario, Canada. Since 1998 Spencerville has been located in the municipality of Edwardsburgh/Cardinal.
Peleg Spencer first built a wooden dam near the site in 1811.Peleg and David Spencer built mills on the banks of the South Nation River, which enabled the economic development of a small pioneer community. The community contained a variety of small industries by the middle of the 19th century. It was the site of an annual agricultural fair. The Queen of England then donated the land to the Stethem family in 1940.
The village's best-recognized landmark is the Spencerville Mill, a restored, heritage gristmill on the South Nation River. By 1864, Robert Fairbairn had built a stone gristmill on the north side of the river and installed a steam engine to allow the mill to operate year-round. Fairburn had purchased the property from David Spencer, the father of his wife Mercy, who in turn had acquired a saw and gristmill from his father Peleg Spencer.
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 Leeds and Grenville Counties