Amazing almanacs  

Did you know that almanacs are filled
with genealogical treasures?
 Ruby M. Cusack

As a farmer's daughter, I was always aware of the important role weather played in our daily lives. The full moon in June determined when the cucumbers should be planted. If it rained on July 15, Dad was likely to have problems getting in the hay.

The "Farmer's Almanac," not surprisingly, was a household item. At the time, it was also one of the few books available to a young, avid reader. I spent hours reading that book and always associated almanacs with weather predictions.

That all changed a couple of years ago.

My husband came home from a flea market with a book in his hand. Handing it to me, he said, "Here's another one for your genealogical collection." I looked at the title, "Canadian Almanac and Miscellaneous Directory ­ 1913." I thanked him, but wondered what information an almanac would have in it to interest us "root diggers." I was in for a surprise.

The first thing that caught my eye was an excellent coloured map of the Maritime provinces that showed the counties. As I turned the pages, I was delighted to find all kinds of genealogical material.

There are several lists of names related to militia as well as the titled Canadians. All the post offices and railroad stations of the dominion of Canada are given.

A very interesting chapter is titled: "Canadian Newspapers and Magazine Directory." It is a listing of all the newspapers published in each city and their circulation. In Saint John, the Telegraph and Sun had a circulation of 10,000. There were at least 10 other publications in our city in 1913.

My favourite chapter is "The Clergy of Canada." The names of all clergymen and their postings are given for the Church of England, Methodist, Presbyterian, Baptist and Roman Catholic. As an example, the Methodist minister in Hampton in 1913 was J. A. Duke. The name of Rev. Duke interested me because he had been the last pastor to serve in the Methodist Church in Titusville, before it was turned into Stover Baird's blacksmith shop.

I would suggest that on your next visit to a library or a research institution you take the time to look through the "Canadian Almanac."

You will find the chapters contain very interesting bits and pieces of genealogical information.

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Queries have been grouped together to cover the year 1998 and can be viewed at Queries-1998

Ruby Cusack is a genealogy buff living in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. Readers are invited to send their New Brunswick genealogical queries to Ruby at When E-Mailing please put Yesteryear Families in the Subject line. Please include in the query, your name and postal address as someone reading the newspaper, may have information to share with you but not have access to E-mail. Queries should be no more than 45 words in length.

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