Ontario Ancestors Conference 2022 The Ontario Genealogical Society Virtual Conference 2022, June 24 – 26, Ottawa
The Ontario Genealogical Society Virtual Conference 2022, June 24 – 26, Ottawa

Speaker Review : Debra Honor

Photo Album Mysteries Revealed

Date: June 26 Time: 9:00 AM Stream B

As the ‘Bloginator’ for the Ontario Ancestors Conference, I posed a few questions to our Speakers. It’s interesting to hear such different perspectives of genealogy research and a great bonus is a look into the people behind the talks

Question 1: A brief Bio:

Debra is a retired elementary teacher who has been a member of the Ontario
Genealogical Society since 1979. She has served at the Essex Branch in several positions including 15 years as Chairperson as well as Regional Director at the Provincial Office.

She is a writer, speaker, and researcher of genealogical and historical topics. As a
member of the U. E. L. A. C., Debra has proved several Loyalist ancestors for herself and others.

Question 2: What or when was the moment that you became interested in pursuing your family’s history?

My interest in family history happened in 1967 when an older relative was asking for
information on my mother’s Leitch family. I decided to do my father’s Butler family
which has developed into all my family history lines.

Question 3: Please provide a bit of insight into what your talk will provide.

Old family photo albums with few names can be used to trace the family and to be
named. I share my research skills on how to solve the mysteries held in an old album.

Question 4: I have a favourite question which I have been posting to the people I’ve interviewed. 

What is your ‘AHA’ moment – that moment when you finally found a connection (or broke a brick wall) you’ve been looking for in the records?

One: After 35 years, I finally found my Butler Loyalist connection. John Butler from
Staten Island, who first settled in New Brunswick and then came with his family to
Norfolk County, Ontario.

Two: during Covid 19, through DNA, I have found my grandmother, Margaret Leitch’s birth father and the descendants of his family shared their family research with me. So, in 2 months, I had completed my pedigree chart back 5 generations and a few lines back farther. Some of my new cousins live in my town!

Question 5: Do you have any tips for first-time genealogists or what is it that keeps you motivated to continue to try to find that one unique resource? 

Genealogy for me, is a passion. I enjoy the research process, meeting new distant cousins and sharing the family research to come to the best conclusions that we can about our past.