I had every intention this evening of writing a 2nd installment to follow my Thriller Thursday story of My Great-Great Grandfather John Carter but I had a lovely evening with friends which went late into the evening so time forbids such an intricate tale. Another reason for my change in subject however is a surprise tumbling of a genealogical brick wall today.
I had mentioned previously the brick wall I had been pondering — the Burgie family of Collingwood, Simcoe, Ontario. I had inquired with the Collingwood library about some obituary notices to see if they would produce any leads. These took me back one generation further but again the trail ran cold. I had once again stalled!
Breaking through one brick wall only to slam into another is something I do not accept! I suspected the Burgie name was not the true surname but I had nothing to cling to regarding this suspicion. I decided to take my query about the family to the Ontario Genealogical Society Facebook page last night and by this morning I had a wealth of possibilities presented to me. Some information I already possessed, some I was easily able to dismiss, but then there came a piece that fit precisely into the picture my research had formed!
The name Burgie was, as I had suspected, a changed surname, a variation of the name Berger. Joseph Burgie–the ancestor which had caused a stand still in my research was the son of Joseph Berger and Marie Beaudoin. Ah ha! Territory I can understand, French-Canadian territory. Joseph Berger, born in Montreal, it seems was a Voyageur in the fur trade venturing to Drummond Island. The history of Drummond Island, its British Garrison, and the island’s change of hands from those of the British to those of the Americans in the years after the war of 1812 are subjects I will be studying further.
I am now vigorously sifting through this new burst of information! I believe I may now be able to trace the family back into Quebec, if not France. Time will tell! Forgive my mixed metaphors, but sometimes all it takes is one ray of light; One foot in the right direction and a stand still turns into a run!!
Sorry so short! Hopefully this breakthrough will remind you that Facebook Genealogy Society pages can be a wonderful resource, as are libraries, and asking for a little help to steer your research in the right direction by presenting you with more obscure possibilities from local resources you may not have access to any other way!