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UELAC 2019 Conference Speakers

The Capital Calls

Conference Presenters

Lesley Anderson

Presentation: “Researching Your Loyalist Roots on Ancestry” — Saturday, June 1, 2019, 3pm (see schedule)

Lesley Anderson has worked for Ancestry.ca for more than 10 years as their Canadian spokesperson and has done numerous presentations for genealogy societies and conferences across Canada on the endless research possibilities available on Ancestry.ca.

She has been involved in personal research of her family tree for over 45 years and her passion for genealogy has branched out to genetic genealogy, teaching classes, speaking at seminars and conferences, making TV and Radio appearances, consulting and doing research for others. Most recently she organized a group of 30 on a research and sightseeing trip to Ireland. For years she was well known for her computer and genealogy classes offered through the Ottawa Catholic Board Continuing Ed and her “field trips” to various archives and libraries.

She has served as Director of Education for BIFHSGO (British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa) for many years and volunteers at the Ottawa Stake - LDS Family History Center where she gets great enjoyment out of helping new and experienced genealogists with their research.

For more information, visit her blog.

Lesley Anderson

Jean Rae Baxter

Workshop: “Writing Your Loyalist Family History” — Saturday, 1 June 2019, 2 pm (see schedule)

Jean's workshop on June 1st will help you write a narrative that people will want to read. You'll learn how to organize your writing project and use the tools of fiction to make your true story come alive. You'll learn to create vivid characters, setting and action in a story about your Loyalist ancestors that you can share with family and pass on to the next generation. The only preparation needed is to ask three questions: What do I want to write about? What do I want to show? What do I want the reader to experience?

Jean Rae Baxter UE, a retired English teacher, holds a B.A. and M.A. from the University of Toronto and a B.Ed. from Queen's. Her Loyalist ancestors settled in Essex and Kent Counties. She is a past member of the Hamilton Branch, UELAC, and worked on their Education Committee making presentations in schools. Currently she is a member of the Kingston Branch and Chair of their Program Committee.

Jean began writing novels to address the need for responsible historical fiction to tell the story of the Loyalists from a Canadian point of view.

She has published five books on the effects of the American Revolution on various communities: The Way Lies North (2007) focuses on the plight of white Loyalists; Broken Trail (2011), tells of native people's struggles; Freedom Bound (2012), deals with Black Loyalists; The White Oneida (2014) examines issues facing native people striving to form a confederacy of their own; Hope's Journey 2015) a story of family reunification and healing from the wounds of war. The last novel in the series is tentatively titled Ska-Noh, a Mohawk word that means “Be Strong” and is used in sense of “Farewell.” She has also authored a murder mystery, Looking for Cardenio, and two short story collections, A Twist of Malice and Scattered Light.

Jean has held numerous workshops on using the tools of fiction to bring family history to life. For more information please visit her website, www.jeanraebaxter.ca, or see Queen's University's alumni spotlight on Baxter.

Jean Rae Baxter

Carolynne Davy

Performing: “Traditional Musical Retrospective” (Soloist) — Banquet, Friday, 31 May 2019, 8 pm (see schedule)

Carolynne Davy a graduate of Queen's University with an Honours Bachelor of Music, and Master of Education degrees, also attended the Opera School at the University of Toronto. She has performed at Carnegie Hall, the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, the Toronto International Festival and with Toronto's Opera in Concert.as well as a soloist with numerous orchestras and choral societies across Canada and the U.S.

She is also an accomplished pianist and has a very busy professional career as performer, teacher, clinician, examiner, conductor, artist-in-the-schools contributor, music theatre director and a much in demand accompanist. She is President of the North York/York Region Branch of the Ontario Registered Music Teachers' Association, served on the Board of Directors for Choirs Ontario for many years, and continues to adjudicate numerous music festivals as voice, choral and piano specialist. In her "spare" time, she is the music director and cantor at a church in downtown Toronto.

Carolynne Davy

Jennifer DeBruin, UE

Presentation: “Traitors, Spies and Heroes: Loyalist Espionage during the American Revolution” — Saturday, June 1, 2019, 2 pm (see schedule)

Jennifer combines her passion and experience in writing, education, history, and genealogy, to encourage others to “discover the humanity in the history.” An author of three fact-based historical fiction novels and with a fourth in the works, she also writes historical articles, which have appeared in various publications. She has over 20 years experience, as a professional speaker, delivering dynamic and engaging history presentations.

Jennifer holds several volunteer positions, including serving as the Public Relations Chair of the United Empire Loyalists' Association of Canada (UELAC). She assists various organizations with communication and promotion, including social media and website management. She is married with two children and lives in Eastern Ontario, Canada.

For more information, visit jenniferdebruin.com.

Jennifer DeBruin

Albert Dumont

Presentation: “Welcome to the Land of the Anishinabeg” — Opening Ceremonies, Thursday, May 30, 2019, 6 pm (see schedule)

Born and raised in traditional Algonquin territory (Kitigan Zibi), Elder Dumont, "South Wind", is a poet, storyteller, speaker, activist, volunteer and an Algonquin Traditional Teacher. He grew up and came of age at a time when the view of most Canadians was that “Indians” were nothing more than useless tax drains holding Canada back. This experience weighed heavily on his emotional and spiritual health. He will speak of his experiences and how he recovered from overt and direct racism.

From November 2013 to March 2017 Albert Dumont worked as an Elder for the Parole Board of Canada at Elder Assisted Hearings. Since October 2016 he has been serving his community as one of 13 Elders on the Elders Advisory Committee of the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General. He was employed for three years as a spiritual advisor for Aboriginal men incarcerated at Millhaven Institution's J Unit, near Kingston, ON. He has published five books of poetry and short stories.

In 2010 Albert Dumont was presented with a Human Rights Award by the Public Service Alliance of Canada for his work as an activist and volunteer on his ancestral lands in the Ottawa area. He received the DreamKEEPERS Citation for Outstanding Leadership in January 2017. Albert Dumont has dedicated his life to promoting Aboriginal spirituality and healing and to protecting the rights of Aboriginal Peoples especially those rights affecting the young.

For more information, visit albertdumont.com.

Albert Dumont

Valerie Knowles

Presentation: “Chief Justice Jonathan Sewell: Judge and Political Figure in Lower Canada” — Friday, 31 May 2019, 3 pm (see schedule)

Montreal-born Valerie Knowles is an Ottawa writer and direct descendant of Chief Justice Sewell. She has a B.A. (Honours History) from Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, an M.A. (History) from McGill University in Montreal, and a Bachelors of Journalism degree from Carleton University in Ottawa. In addition to writing for newspapers, magazines, and federal government departments, Valerie has taught history and worked as an archivist. She has published twelve works of non-fiction, four of which are trade books, available online and in stores. Her publications include the book, “Strangers At Our Gates: Canadian Immigration and Immigration Policy, 1540 – 2015.”

From her Ottawa base, Valerie continues to write independent non-fiction books and to accept commissioned writing work. Her focus remains on Canadian and Ottawa political and social history. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two dogs, Katie and Robbie.

For more information, visit valerieknowles.com.

Valerie Knowles

George Neville

Presentation: “Loyalist Land Grants along the Grand (Ottawa) River in 1788” — Thursday, May 30, 2019, 2pm (see schedule)

As a 7th-generation descendant, through his mother, of Loyalist Daniel Shipman, Sr., progenitor of all the Shipmans of eastern Ontario, George will provide a brief, introductory sketch of the circumstances under which this man and some of his family arrived with Jessop's Corps along the St. Lawrence River front in 1784. The subject of this presentation, which will touch on the two great river systems of Ontario, the St. Lawrence and the Ottawa, will complement Brian Tackaberry's Friday tour of the Rideau Valley to Merrickville. This presentation was published by The Historical Society of Ottawa in January 2018 as No. 103 in the illustrated Bytown Pamphlet series. Copies of the pamphlet will be available for sale at nominal cost at the Conference.

Born in Brockville, Ontario, George has a PhD in chemistry from Queen's University. He spent much of his professional career at the Bureau of Drug Research in Health Canada's Health Protection Branch. George has served as vice-chairman (1975-77) and chairman (1977-79) of the Ottawa Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society (OGS) and as editor of the provincial OGS quarterly journal Families (1978-1983). From 2010 to 2015 he served as president of The Historical Society of Ottawa (HSO) and is currently active as the Society's past president. Visit http://hsottawa.ncf.ca/ for more information on the Historical Society of Ottawa, as well as their Facebook page, @historicalsocietyottawa.

George Neville

Marilyn Schwartz

Presentation: “Capital City Treasures” — Thursday, May 30, 2019, 3pm (see schedule)

This will be an armchair guided historical and cultural tour of the streets of downtown Ottawa. Explore the statues, monuments and memorials on Parliament Hill, Elgin Street, Sussex Drive north. Discover places commemorating Colonel By, Champlain, Sir Galahad. Learn about the National Arts Center and the National Gallery of Canada. Sit back and enjoy this look back at the history of our wonderful Capital.

Marilyn Schwartz is a pharmacist who graduated from University of Manitoba and spent most of her career with the Federal Government where she was involved in the approval of new drugs.

Since retiring, her passion has become hiking; she is a hike leader in the Ottawa Club, Rideau Trail Association. She enjoys historical hikes especially in the Ottawa area and around the neighborhood areas of the Rideau Trail. She believes that it is not enough to walk and see the outdoors but one also must understand the history and background around each and every village and neighborhood that you walk in.

Marilyn Schwartz

Craig Sweetnam

Presentation: “Ottawa Tour of the War Museum, Rideau Hall, and Museum of History” — Friday, 31 May 2019, 9 am (see schedule)

Craig has Loyalist ancestors on both sides of his family. His mother's ancestors came north from the Mohawk Valley and settled in Upper Canada along the St Lawrence River. His father's Loyalist ancestors came from the Poughkeepsie area and settled in Prince Edward County. He has lived and worked most of his life in Ottawa. Along with his wife Stephanie, he regularly enjoys being a tourist in his own city. They are both looking forward to showing off our fascinating National Capital Region to our UELAC 2019 Conference visitors.

Craig Sweetnam

Brian Tackaberry

Presentation: “Rideau Valley Bus Tour” — Friday, May 31, 2019, 9 am (see schedule)

Brian will lead the (‘A’) tour through the Rideau Valley from Ottawa, noting the historic sites along the way, with stops at Watsons Mill in Manotick, and the Merrickville Blockhouse, with lunch and a walking tour of Merrickville, a brief stop in Burritts Rapids (if time permits), and a final stop at the Goulbourn Museum in Stittsville. The bus will return to the hotel in time for participants to prepare for the banquet.

Brian Tackaberry is a retired secondary school teacher from Almonte, Ontario. He is very involved in community activities in and around Almonte. He has been president of the Perth Citizens' Band, serving as bandmaster of the group since 1986. He has also served as a director with the North Lanark Highland Games in Almonte since 1984 and a member of the North Lanark Historical Society.

Brian began his own genealogical research in 1980. As descendant of United Empire Loyalists he served as President of the Bay of Quinte Branch, UELAC from 2003 to 2013 and as Newsletter Editor since 1991. He is currently Volunteer Manager and Financial Officer for the UEL Heritage Centre and Park in Adolphustown, which are operated by the Branch. He is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, the New England Historic Genealogical Society, the United Empire Loyalist Association of Canada, and the Ontario Genealogical Society. He has published several books, and has conducted workshops on genealogy, with particular focus on the Loyalists. He has documented evidence and obtained certificates for 16 of his UEL ancestors.

Brian Tackaberry

Edith Troup

Performing: “Traditional Musical Retrospective” (Accompanist) — Banquet, Friday, May 31, 2019, 8 pm (see schedule)

Edith holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Queen's University where she majored on piano and clarinet, and specialized in Music History. In Ottawa and on British Columbia's Sunshine Coast, she has accompanied choirs, singers, instrumentalists, and dancers (modern and ballet) in concerts, festivals, and exams. In Ottawa, she has worked as rehearsal pianist for The Savoy Society and The Lakeside Players. Currently, she is Music Director at All Saints' Anglican Church Westboro, where she accompanies the Evensong Choir, and directs a children's choir. She plays piano for English Country Dance, studies classical guitar, and is also a Highland Bagpiper.

For more information, visit edithtroupmusic.wordpress.com.

Edith Troup

Glenn Wright

Presentation: “Controversy and Compromise: The Origins of Canada's National Flag” — Gala Banquet, Saturday, June 1, 2019, 5:30 pm (see schedule)

Glenn Wright was born and educated in Toronto, ON. Following graduation from the University of Toronto, he worked as a researcher for Pierre Berton before joining the Public Archives of Canada in 1975. During his public service career that spanned more than 30 years, Glenn has worked as an archivist, historical research officer and, for many years, assistant historian with the RCMP. Retired since 2006, he is a frequent speaker at family history and genealogical events, with a special interest in Canadians who served in the Great War. Glenn has also been associated with television programs such as “Who Do You Think You Are?” , “Ancestors in the Attic”, and “Engraved on a Nation.”

He has published widely in family history, genealogical and historical magazines and journals. Glenn is also the author of Canadians at War, 1914-1919: A Research Guide to World War I Service Records (Global Genealogy, 2010) and Controversy, Compromise and Celebration: The History of Canada's National Flag (Historical Society of Ottawa, 2017).

Glenn has been actively involved with the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa for many years and served as the Society's President from 2010 to 2014.

Glenn Wright