Cat No.: CA0210-DL: File size 246.8MB
Sub titled; A collection of facts, events and reminiscences for over half a century This rare book is actually two separate and distinct books within one cover. The second book is titled The difficulties of religion, and while it's included in this reproduction we make no further comment on it in this description.
The author, John Lowry Gourlay declares himself as being of Irish descent, having been born in Drumquin, County Tyrone, and having emigrated to Canada in 1833. His family settled in the township of March and soon they became land owners and farmers in March and the adjoining Huntley township. John was ordained as a Presbyterian minister and served as the first Presbyterian minister in Ashton. From his families part in the early settlement of the Ottawa valley and his own ministries he was ideally placed to pick up and to be able to relate much of the early history of the area.
John's writing style is not the easiest to follow and he tends to ramble from family history to tales of adventure, to religion, and even to vicious attacks on figures of authority, all within the space of a few sentences. Never the less, or perhaps because of this, there is a wealth of detailed history of a large area of Ontario and Quebec contained in this book. We attempted to determine the extent of the range covered in the book and it appeared to range well beyond the traditional bounds of the valley from the Lake of Two Mountains to Pembroke, to include references to locations as far away as Kingston, Cornwall, and Brockville to the south and into the Laurentians at least as far as Chelsea to the North.
This is a treasury of early family information about the Ottawa Valley and should take pride of place in any researchers collection. Picking at random amongst the more recognizable early names of the Ottawa area there are long discussions of the activities of Philemon Wright, John Sparks, and the Billings and Burrits families. There is no counting the number of other families and individuals who feature in the pages.
This valuable book has been loaned to us by its proud owner, Karen Prytula. Karen realized that age was catching up with this book and it was beginning to suffer from her frequent “visits” to check the history of the Ottawa Valley. We were pleased to receive her offer to allow us to scan the book so we could help her to preserve it and at the same time make it more available. Please join us in thanking Karen, and letting her know that her generosity is being appreciated.
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FastFind: No; ISBN No.: 1-897338-75-9