Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory is a 73 km² (18000-acre) Mohawk Indian reserve on the Bay of Quinte in southeastern Ontario, Canada, east of Belleville and immediately to the west of Deseronto. It serves as the land base for the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte (Kenhtè:ke Kanyen'kehá:ka) First Nation.
The community takes its name from a variant spelling of Mohawk leader Joseph Brant's traditional Mohawk name, Thayendanegea (standardized spelling Thayentiné:ken), which means 'two pieces of fire wood beside each other'. Officially, in the Mohawk language, the community is called "Kenhtè:ke", an old word, the meaning of which is unclear. The Cayuga name is Tayęda:ne:gęˀ or Detgayę:da:negęˀ, "land of two logs.")
Ontario GenWeb has a sketchmap of the original townships.
The map of Hastings County circa 1951 from Ontario Archives locates the individual municipalities, townships, city, towns and villages of the county.
Following the American Revolution, the Mohawk, who were allies of the British Crown, lost their traditional homelands in the Mohawk Valley of what became New York state, when they were forced to cede their lands following the defeat of the British. As compensation for their allegiance, the Crown offered them unsettled land in Upper Canada. A group of Mohawk led by John Deseronto selected the Bay of Quinte because it allegedly was the birthplace of Tekanawita, one of the founders of the original Iroquois Confederacy in the 12th century.
On May 22, 1784, the group of 20 families (between 100 to 125 people) arrived. Nine years later, the Tyendinaga tract of land was officially set aside under Crown Treaty 3½, signed on on April 1, 1793, by Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe and thereafter known as the 'Simcoe Deed'. This tract of land, measuring , was legally accepted by the British Crown, and subsequently by the Canadian Government.
But a wave of Loyalists also settled in the Bay of Quinte area, and the government granted many of whom land in the Tyendinaga Tract. During the period from 1820 to 1843, the Mohawk lost two-thirds of the treaty lands of the Simcoe Deed. Further land loss has left the Mohawk with only today in this area today. Other groups settled in the Six Nations Reserve, Kahnawake, Kanesatake, Wahta and Akwesasne (the latter three were established Mohawk settlements prior to the war.
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.
E-books and Books
Some websites with more local information on Hastings County