Place:Hamilton, Wentworth, Ontario, Canada

Watchers
NameHamilton
TypeCity
Coordinates43.25°N 79.833°W
Located inWentworth, Ontario, Canada     (1778 - 1974)
See alsoHamilton-Wentworth, Ontario, Canadaregional municipality into which the city of Hamilton was amalgamated in 1974
Hamilton, Ontario, Canadasingle-tier municipality replacing Hamilton-Wentworth in 2001
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names

Hamilton was located in Wentworth County, Ontario until the county was turned into the Regional Municipality of Hamilton-Wentworth in 1974. In 2001 Hamilton-Wentworth became a new single-tier City of Hamilton including all the townships and towns that made up the original County of Wentworth.


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Hamilton is a port city in the Canadian province of Ontario. An industrialized city in the Golden Horseshoe at the west end of Lake Ontario, Hamilton has a population of 536,917, and a metropolitan (which includes Burlington and Grimsby) population of 747,545. The city is located about 60 km (37 miles) southwest of Toronto, with which the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) is formed.

On January 1, 2001, the current boundaries of Hamilton was created through the amalgamation of the original city with other municipalities of the Regional Municipality of Hamilton-Wentworth. Residents of the city are known as Hamiltonians. Since 1981, the metropolitan area has been listed as the ninth largest in Canada and the third largest in Ontario.

Hamilton is home to the Royal Botanical Gardens, the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum, the Bruce Trail, McMaster University, Redeemer University College and Mohawk College. McMaster University is ranked 4th in Canada and 77th in the world by Times Higher Education Rankings 2018–19 and has a well-known medical school.

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

In pre-colonial times, the Neutral First Nation used much of the land but were gradually driven out by the Five (later Six) Nations (Iroquois) who were allied with the British against the Huron and their French allies. A member of the Iroquois Confederacy provided the route and name for Mohawk Road, which originally included King Street in the lower city.

Following the United States gaining independence after their American Revolutionary War, in 1784, about 10,000 United Empire Loyalists settled in Upper Canada (what is now southern Ontario), chiefly in Niagara, around the Bay of Quinte, and along the St. Lawrence River between Lake Ontario and Montreal. The Crown granted them land in these areas in order to develop Upper Canada and to compensate them for losses in the United States. With former First Nations lands available for purchase, these new settlers were soon followed by many more Americans, attracted by the availability of inexpensive, arable land. At the same time, large numbers of Iroquois who had been allied with Britain arrived from the United States and were settled on reserves west of Lake Ontario as compensation for lands they lost in what was now the United States. During the War of 1812, British regulars and Canadian militia defeated invading American troops at the Battle of Stoney Creek, fought in what is now a park in eastern Hamilton.

The town of Hamilton was conceived by George Hamilton (a son of a Queenston entrepreneur and founder, Robert Hamilton), when he purchased farm holdings of James Durand, the local Member of the British Legislative Assembly, shortly after the War of 1812.[1] Nathaniel Hughson, a property owner to the north, cooperated with George Hamilton to prepare a proposal for a courthouse and jail on Hamilton's property. Hamilton offered the land to the crown for the future site. Durand was empowered by Hughson and Hamilton to sell property holdings which later became the site of the town. As he had been instructed, Durand circulated the offers at York during a session of the Legislative Assembly, which established a new Gore District, of which the Hamilton townsite was a member.[1]

Initially, this town was not the most important centre of the Gore District. An early indication of Hamilton's sudden prosperity was marked by the fact that in 1816 it was chosen over Ancaster, Ontario that year to be the administrative center for the new Gore District. Another dramatic economic turnabout for Hamilton occurred in 1832 when a canal was finally cut through the outer sand bar that enabled Hamilton to become a major port. A permanent jail was not constructed until 1832, when a cut-stone design was completed on Prince's Square, one of the two squares created in 1816.[1] Subsequently, the first police board and the town limits were defined by statute on February 13, 1833. Official city status was achieved on June 9, 1846, by an act of Parliament, 9 Victoria Chapter 73.

By 1845, the population was 6,475. In 1846, there were useful roads to many communities as well as stage coaches and steamboats to Toronto, Queenston, and Niagara. Eleven cargo schooners were owned in Hamilton. Eleven churches were in operation. A reading room provided access to newspapers from other cities and from England and the U.S. In addition to stores of all types, four banks, tradesmen of various types, and sixty-five taverns, industry in the community included three breweries, ten importers of dry goods and groceries, five importers of hardware, two tanneries, three coachmakers, and a marble and a stone works.


As the city grew, several prominent buildings were constructed in the late 19th century, including the Grand Lodge of Canada in 1855, West Flamboro Methodist Church in 1879 (later purchased by Dufferin Masonic Lodge in 1893), a public library in 1890, and the Right House department store in 1893. The first commercial telephone service in Canada, the first telephone exchange in the British Empire, and the second telephone exchange in all of North America were each established in the city between 1877–78. The city had several interurban electric street railways and two inclines, all powered by the Cataract Power Co.

Though suffering through the Hamilton Street Railway strike of 1906, with industrial businesses expanding, Hamilton's population doubled between 1900 and 1914. Two steel manufacturing companies, Stelco and Dofasco, were formed in 1910 and 1912, respectively. Procter & Gamble and the Beech-Nut Packing Company opened manufacturing plants in 1914 and 1922, respectively, their first outside the US. Population and economic growth continued until the 1960s. In 1929 the city's first high-rise building, the Pigott Building, was constructed; in 1930 McMaster University moved from Toronto to Hamilton, in 1934 the second Canadian Tire store in Canada opened here; in 1940 the airport was completed; and in 1948, the Studebaker assembly line was constructed. Infrastructure and retail development continued, with the Burlington Bay James N. Allan Skyway opening in 1958, and the first Tim Hortons store in 1964.

Since then, many of the large industries have moved or shut down operations in restructuring that also affected the United States.[2] The economy has shifted more toward the service sector, such as transportation, education, and health services.

On January 1, 2001, the new city of Hamilton was formed from the amalgamation of Hamilton and its five neighbouring municipalities: Ancaster, Dundas, Flamborough, Glanbrook, and Stoney Creek.[3] Before amalgamation, the "old" City of Hamilton had 331,121 residents and was divided into 100 neighbourhoods. The former region of Hamilton-Wentworth had a population of 490,268. The amalgamation created a single-tier municipal government ending subsidization of its suburbs. The new amalgamated city has 519,949 people in more than 100 neighbourhoods, and surrounding communities.

In 1997 there was a devastating fire at the Plastimet plastics plant. Approximately 300 firefighters battled the blaze, and many sustained severe chemical burns and inhaled volatile organic compounds when at least 400 tonnes of PVC plastic were consumed in the fire.

Research Tips

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.

Early Records

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.
Images and indexes of civil registrations for the "viewable" years can be found on paid websites, and indexes only on FamilySearch. The FamilySearch Wiki on Ontario Vital Records explains how these records are organized and their availability.
In September 2014 Ancestry.ca announced that its paid website has been subjected to a "houseclean" of its Ontario BMD database, adding data that had been omitted and making many corrections. Its provision now includes

  • Births, with 2,172,124 records covering 1869-1913.
  • Marriages, with 3,393,369 records for 1801-1928 including Ontario county, district and Roman Catholic origins as well as province-wide civil registration.
  • Deaths, with 2,190,030 records comprising Ontario civil registrations of deaths, 1869-1938 and registrations of Ontario overseas deaths for 1939-1947.

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.

Censuses

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 1921. 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.
Other websites, some paid and some free, also provide Canadian census originals and/or indexes online. One can also view censuses on microfilm at the LAC, at the Archives of Ontario (see address above), or at large libraries throughout Canada.

Hard-to-Find Places

E-books, Books and Newspapers

  • The Internet Archive, particularly texts from Canadian universities, can contain interesting material
  • Our Roots is a Canadian website similar to The Internet Archive
  • Global Genealogy is an online bookshop specializing in Ontario material who will ship anywhere in the world.
  • The Ancestor Hunt is a blog listing old Ontario newspapers that are available online, both free and pay websites. This is a very extensive list.

Some websites with more local information on Wentworth County

This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Hamilton, Ontario. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.
source: Family History Library Catalog