Saturday, December 31, 2011

Who Celebrated the New Year in Huronia and When?

Pope Gregory XIII, Gregorian Calendar comes from him
When one reads the primary source documentation that relates to the First Contact period in the New World it is important to note that these writers used more than one calendar to record events. If the writer was Catholic then events were recorded with dates in the Gregorian calendar;   if Huguenot (Protestant) one would most likely have recorded events on dates from the Julian calendar. At this time of year these calendars would be a year and 11 days apart and would not come close to alignment until March 21st when the Julian calendar New Years would take place. The 11 days however would remain an issue. To add to this confusion, the priests would often record an event using the liturgical calendar so one gets references to events taking place on St. Bernard's day or other feast days unique to the Catholic rhythm of life.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Sites in Tay Twp - OMB Review

I have been informed by the OMB that a Prehearing Conference will be held February 14th 2012 regarding a development on part of lots 12 and 13 Cons 6 and 7 Tay township.
The only site references that I have on my database relates to A F Hunter's site #7 (Vent's site) in his Tay report. This report indicates a landing place at the mouth of the Hogg River that appears to have been used by the Wendat in the 1600's and later by the Algonquin in the 1800's. This site shows up on Hunter's map that accompanied the report and on the A E Jones map of Tay sites in his1908 report.

News From Canada, 1628

Quebec History. David Kirke - England's Honour

David Kirke and His Brothers (1597– 1654)
David Kirke was born around 1597 in Dieppe, France, to a family of merchants. He was the eldest of the five sons—followed by Lewis, Thomas, John and James—of Jarvis Kirke, a wealthy trader who conducted business in France and England.
When war broke out between France and England in 1627, King Charles I commissioned David and his brothers to conquer Canada in the name of England. In 1628, the Kirke Brothers made an unsuccessful attempt to take Québec City. The following year, backed by the Company of Adventurers to Canada and better prepared, the Kirkes reappeared on the St. Lawrence River. Incapable of bearing the siege any longer, Champlain surrendered and was forced to leave Québec, which was occupied by the Kirkes until 1632. The signing of the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye in 1632 forced the Kirkes to restore Québec to the French. David Kirke later became governor of Newfoundland and continued to serve the English Crown in this capacity. In the end, Kirke was imprisoned for various reasons and accusations, and died around 1654 while serving his sentence.
When news of the events that took place from 1628 to 1632 reached France, the French-born Kirke brothers were burned in effigy because their actions were considered treason. Years later, the Kirkes were naturalized as English citizens and knighted in recognition of their exploits that led to the occupation of Québec.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

It is more than artifacts that come from Huronia.


Fr. Jean de Brébeuf came to Canada in 1625 as a missionary, and was sent to the Huron Indians near Georgian Bay in 1626. He learned their language and preached there until 1629, when Québec was captured by the Kirke brothers from Newfoundland (a little-known event in Canadian history), and he went back to France. He returned to live among the Huron again in 1633 .

It was in 1643 that Jean de Brebeuf wrote the "Huron Carol" with his understanding of the Wendat language. The above youtube link will take you to the Wendat version that is then repeated in French and English. This is the first carol written in Canada and also known as "The Moon of Wintertime"

The Huron Carol was written by him in their language, both as gift and to help in his missionary and teaching efforts.. He wrote the words to the music of a 16th century Carol called "Une Jeune Pucelle" (A Young Maid). Fortunately one of the last Jesuit missionaries to the Huron, Fr. de Villeneuve, wrote the old Huron words to the carol and later translated it into simple French. Fr. Brébeuf's carol was translated to English by Jesse Edgar Middleton, and was included in "The Hymn Book of the Anglican Church of Canada and the United Church of Canada" (the ‘Red Book’) in 1971.
On 16 March 1649 Jean de Brébeuf was captured by invading Iroquois and brutally killed. He was canonized by the Roman Catholic Church in 1930.
     Text adapted from Kir Shalom, Huron Carol, Canadian Encyclopedia
Image from Canadian Heritage Gallery

Friday, December 16, 2011

Blog Contest - Who was Guillaume Chaudron?

Q1 -Where did he die?
Q2-When did he die?
Q3-Where might we find his remains?
Q4-What priest was present at his death?

Friday, December 09, 2011

The Huronia Museum needs your help.

As some of you may know the Huronia Museum lost much of its replicated Huron/Wendat village to a fire in the spring of 2007. After a number of years of negotiation the Museum accepted a settlement from the insurance company that will allow them to rebuild the village the way they want rather than the way it was at the time of the fire.

Huronia Chapter Executive for 2012

As a result of the elections at our AGM the Chapter's executive for the upcoming year are;

  • President - John Raynor (
  • Vice President - Jamie Hunter
  • Secretary - Marg Raynor (
  • Treasurer - Kristin Thor 
Other positions of note are;
Membership chair - Leslie Ann Thoms
Newsletter - Leslie Ann Thoms
Webpage - Alicia Hawkins

Don't forget to renew your membership for 2012. -

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Huronia Chapter Annual General Meeting/Pot Luck Social, Dec. 8th

Annual General Meeting/elections/pot luck social
Huronia Chapter Meeting Dec. 8th, 2011 - 7:00 pm
Huronia Museum, 549 Little Lake Park Road, Midland, Ontario

It's Time to renew your Membership.

It is that time of year again when all our memberships expire as of December 31st 2011. When taking a look at our membership records for the purposes of our upcoming AGM on December 8th I noted that our carry over of membership into 2012 is quite light. The best and easiest way to renew your membership or join the OAS and Huronia Chapter for the first time is to do it online and pay for both the Provincial OAS dues and the Huronia Chapter fees all at once. This make for easier membership role tracking and for easier book keeping on everyone's part. One payment - one receipt for your records.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Word is Spreading - see National Post

Waste site plans disturb English Canada’s most visited Catholic shrine

Darren Calabrese/National Post
Darren Calabrese/National Post
Saint-Marie among the Hurons historical interpreter Larry Ford lights candles in the holy site Church of St. Joseph at the reconstructed Jesuit mission in Midland, Ont. Thursday, November 17, 2011.
 Nov 21, 2011 – 7:56 AM ET
MIDLAND, ONT. — The tens of thousands of pilgrims who make their way to English Canada’s most visited Catholic shrine and holy site could soon have their sense of being on sacred ground shattered by the sound of trucks dumping industrial waste material less than 600 feet away.
The proposed recycling facility would be on the west bank of the Wye River directly across from Sainte-Marie among the Hurons, which is a replica of a French Jesuit mission that lasted 10 years in the early 17th century. While not all visitors come for religious reasons, the village of 30 buildings sits on Jesuit land and includes a key holy site where two French Jesuit priests, later made saints, were buried in 1649.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

So just what are people searching for when they come to this blog?

Below are the keyword search words that have brought people to this blog. As we can see from our stats most people know that we exits and search by name (they should probably just bookmark the page). Others are looking for info on people while still others are looking for info on specific villages, Huron pottery and such.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Shrine, Sainte-Marie marshal forces in bid to stop recycling plant

Midland Free Press By DOUGLAS GLYNN
Two of Huronia's major tourist attractions are escalating their campaign to stop construction of a recycling facility on their doorstep.
The Martyrs' Shrine and Sainte-Marie Among the Huron -with the backing of the Jesuits in English Canada -have turned to social media to mobilize public opposition to the facility.
They have created a Facebook page containing a form letter people can sign. The page urges people to join a protest march from the Shrine to Midland town hall on Nov. 30 to deliver the letters.
"Don't spoil the tranquillity and peaceful surroundings of these sites with a noisy and ugly plant -relocate it to a more suitable place in Midland," the form letter urges.

Are there any sites under threat here?

I have been given notice of an OMB Prehearing regarding a housing development on Pt Lot 23 Con 4 Township of Tiny. (NE corner of Con 4 Rd and; Tiny Beaches Road South.) - 44deg.36min.51.4sec.W X 79deg.59min.02.2sec.N If my GPS is at all accurate you migh be able to find it on Google Earth.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

So what does the archaeological record say?

As some of you may know that the Huronia Museum in Midland is planning to rebuild the replicated Huron/Wendat village that was partially lost in a fire in May of 2007. The question has arisen as to the what type of palisade was most common on the village sites in classic Huronia.

Nov. 30 Protest March re: proposed industrial site near Ste. Marie and Martyrs Shrine

posted by Tony Peach on the Martyrs' Shrine facebook page:
"come to the shrine on nov 30th at noon and walk to the town hall in midland as a demonstration ,to oppose this proposed recycling centre which is going to ruin the peace and tranquility of the shrine and st marie,both canadian historical sites.we need as many people as possible ,so please give up some time and lets let midland councilors know how people feel about this proposterous idea.see you there.thanks."

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Who Knew?

Below is a post I put on this blog in April of this year - this was the notice regarding the lot where the ossuary was found last week. I was glad to learn that no other archaeologist knew of this site either. it is now in my database.
" I have been notified by the Township of Severn of a pubic meeting take place at the township office April 21st 2011 regarding a proposal for a new 137 lot subdivision on lots 5 and; 6 Con 11, Severn Township (old North Orillia twp).
My database does not show any archaeological sites on these lots. Should anyone have any information regarding sites on these lots please let me know or contact the township directly.
(David Parks, Director of Planning & Development, 705 325-2315 - email-"

Pedestrian Bridge over the Narrows

Robert Browne and I attended a public information session in Orillia on November 9th to view the presentation from Shim-Sutcliffe Architects Inc. regarding their conceptual plan for this project. Within this plan is an interpretive centre that was originally planed to interpret the 5000 + year history of the fish weirs at the Narrows. Robert and I have attended a few meets now and suggested that the interpretive centre could also be used to interpret the more recent history of Champlain's visit to the Narrows. After all he was probably the second European to view the fish weirs and the first to record their use by the First Nations present at the time.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Wye River at Hwy 12 - proposed recycling plant

I added information labels to my photo of this aerial photo that was displayed at the November 10th information session held at Ste. Marie organized by the Jesuits in English Canada (Martyrs' Shrine).  The LOT refers to the location of the proposed recycling plant which likely is to handle construction waste materials including metal materials.

image of outdoor recycling plant

- Bill Gibson -

Thursday, November 10, 2011

what is construction waste recycling

FYI the proposed recycling facility proposed for near the west bank of the Wye River near Ste. Marie Among the Hurons and Martyrs' Shrine is for construction waste recycling. This is a term I am not terribly familiar with.  The following link sheds some light on the term:  link

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Nov. 10th 11:30 AM Jesuits in English Canada info session re: Industrial site proposed near Ste. Marie Among the Hurons

,Midland Town Council is considering approval of an  industrial  development, a recycling plant, near to the location of Martyrs' Shrine and Ste. Marie Among the Hurons on the west side of the Wye River.

I quote from an email I received about an information session from the Jesuits in English Canada about this proposed development.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Orillia Packet Times - Huron remains identified

Remains identified as Huron

By MIRANDA MINASSIAN, Orillia Packet Times

The aboriginal remains found in Cumberland Beach have been identified as Huron, says the leader of Rama First Nation.
"We are given to understand that they are of Huron descent," Chief Sharon Stinson Henry said Monday.
"The ministry has taken charge and will be notifying the Huron leaders."
 The remains of several aboriginal people were discovered Wednesday morning during the servicing of the West Shore Beach Club at the corner of Turnbull Drive and Third Avenue, on the former Bramshott Farm in Severn Township.
As the nearest First Nation to the burial, Rama First Nation was notified of the discovery.
"We, of course, offered to work co-operatively with the Huron," Stinson Henry said.

Orilllia Museum moving to library? Orillia Packet Times

Museum moving to library?

By SARA ROSS, Orillia Packet Times

The Orillia Museum of Art and History (OMAH) could be moving into the new Orillia Public Library.
"Given the space needs of OMAH, and the space available at the library building, moving OMAH to the new building appears to be a reasonable solution in the short to intermediate term if OMAH is amenable to such a move," states a staff report.
On June, 27 council requested a staff report dealing with the optimization of city-owned building assets.
This report will be discussed by council committee Monday night.
The report recommends, "council consider recommending locations for the Orillia Museum of Art and History other than the Sir Sam Steele building."
It also recommends that "council considers uses for the library building space which would be complementary to the primary library use."
It suggests OMAH will be able to increase programming and in turn increase museum revenue if it moves to the library.
At some point in the future as Orillia grows, a long-term solution will need to be developed for OMAH, the report adds.
If OMAH moves into the library, the Sir Sam Steele building, a heritage-designated building, could be sold, it states.
The report says Orillia will receive approximately $630,500 from the sale.
Simcoe North MP Bruce Stanton will be making an announcement at OMAH on Wednesday. The details of this announcement will not be made public until then.
OMAH has applied for a Canada Cultural Spaces Fund grant that will allow it to expand the museum to the unused upper levels. The museum has also applied for a $50,000 Enabling Accessibility Fund grant for an elevator.
The space optimization report examined eight city-owned properties.
Staff also recommend selling 150 Front St. S., the former CN Station currently used by the Chamber of Commerce and licence bureau.
The Mount Slaven School property could also be surplused and sold, the report states.

Martyrs’ Shrine - looking for support - Thursday November 10th

The industrial site that is of concern here is within sight of the Shrine and across the river from Ste. Marie yet no archaeological assessment was requested by the Town of Midland. There are at least 3 Bordenized sites within a km of this property along with a number of other recorded sites including a Metis town-site and some burials.

Martyrs’ Shrine

The National Shrine of the Canadian Martyrs

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Some interesting developments in Orillia.

Ossuary won’t halt plans: developer


Updated 1 day ago
The discovery of First Nation remains, believed to be hundreds of years old, won't stop developers from moving forward with a multi-million dollar gated community in Cumberland Beach.
Summerhill Homes plans to go ahead building the 78-unit West Shore Beach Club once the remains are dealt with according to the law, said the developer in charge of the project.
"We are absolutely continuing on; we just have to hold off," developer Brian Ellis said. "Out of respect, you have to make sure the (authorities) come and certify that the area is cleaned up.
"These (bones) are like hundreds and hundreds of years old," he added. "You always have to follow policy with that kind of stuff. You don't fool around with that kind of thing."
The remains were discovered in Severn Township Wednesday morning during site preparation for the project, located at the corner of Turnbull Drive and Third Avenue, on the former Bramshott Farm.
An investigation is currently being conducted with Michael D'Mello, a registrar from the Ministry of Consumer Service, Cemeteries Regulation Unit, and archeologists, hired by Summerhill, who are looking to determine the origin and extent of the burial.
"The site appears to be an ossuary containing several aboriginal remains. The registrar has notified the appropriate First Nations communities of the discovery," Sue Carroll, spokesperson for the ministry, wrote in an email to The Packet Friday.
She could not confirm which First Nation the remains belonged to.
While Summerhill currently has pre-servicing draft approval for their project, the final OK to start developing the homes won't be given until the proper authorities sign off on how the remains are dealt with, said David Parks, Severn's director of planning.
"We are here to make sure that the regulations of the Cemeteries Act are followed to the tee," Parks said. "That may include altering their original plans."
Once the archeologist determines the origin and extent of the burial site, the First Nations representatives and the land owner must come to an agreement about final disposition of the site and the remains, as outlined in the Cemeteries Act.
"The site may be established as a cemetery or the remains may be re-interred in an existing cemetery, in accordance with the decisions made in the Site Disposition Agreement by the parties involved," wrote Carroll.
More than $3 million has been invested by Summerhill, in land purchase and plan developments, to date, Parks estimated, with tens of millions more planned in investment.
"It is not unusual, if you check history of development, you'll find that (finding remains) happens all the time," said Ellis. "That is actually quite normal in the Muskoka or Orillia area. It is not unusual at all."

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Recogntion for Charles Garrad

Archeologist honoured by Wyandotte

By QMI AGENCY                                                                 

Posted 3 hours ago
A recent trip to the United States to deliver a speech ended with an unexpected honour for a local archeologist.
Charles Garrad was named 2011 Honoured Person by the Wyandotte Nation of Oklahoma and Wyandotte Nation of Kansas -- native people who originated in the Blue Mountains and were once known as the Petun.
Garrad has spent a big part of his life researching the Petun, who lived in this area and are the ancestors of the Oklahoma and Kansas Wyandotte nations. Garrad initiated the archeological searches in The Blue Mountains that uncovered village settlements and life history of the gentle Petun dating back 4,000 years. The Petun left the area and dispersed after being nearly wiped out by the Iroquois, ending up as the Wyandotte in Kansas and Oklahoma.
Garrad recently published a book on his life's research.
Garrad's wife Ella says he has given his life to this project, which he started documenting on an old manual typewriter many years ago, eventually updating it on a computer -- which helped in bringing the information together for the 700- page book.
On Sept. 1, the couple traveled to the States with plans to visit Wyandotte friends and family members who have adopted and welcomed him over the years. During the 10-day visit, the Garrads planned to visit the Kansas City Cemetery, deliver the talk on Garrad's research, and attend a Pow Wow in Kansas City.
In Kansas he was surprised to see that a write-up and map he had submitted has been cast in bronze plaques at the Kansas City Cemetery telling the story of the Wyandotte.
At his lecture, he was presented with a plaque naming him Honoured Person 2011 -'For the many Years of Dedication to Preserve, Educate and Protection of All Wyandotte Ancestors in the Homeland'. The presentation was made by Chief Billy Friend and Second Chief Norman Hildebrant.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Nov. 10th meeting - Jamie Hunter on Beads from the Ball Site

Jamie Hunter, curator of the Huronia Museum, will present a slide show of beads from the Ball Site, explaining the type of beads and the metaphorical and symbolic meaning of the colours for the Huron/Wendat.

Huronia Museum, 7 PM Thursday November 10th, 2011, Midland, Ontario

The presentation portion of the chapter meeting, Hunter's talk, is open to the public.  It will be followed by the chapter's business meeting which is open only to chapter members.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

AIA National Archaeology Day Oct. 22nd

Archaeological Institute of America - National Archaeology Day
National Archaeology Day is a celebration of archaeology and the thrill of discovery. Throughout the month of October and on October 22 in particular, the AIA and its societies throughout the United States and Canada will present archaeological programs and activities in over 100 cities for people of all ages and interests. Whether it is a family-friendly archaeology fair, a guided tour of a local archaeological site, a simulated dig, a lecture or a classroom visit from an archaeologist, the interactive, hands-on programs presented by the Institute and our societies will provide you with the chance to indulge your inner Indiana Jones.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

photography accessory - might be useful and not too pricey

Getting your camera in close to photograph small artifacts or small areas of the ground or area of an excavation can be difficult and when really close you can create a shadow from the camera itself.  Ring lights have been around for awhile going back to the good old film days.  Recently I have been trying to improve my macro photography bag of tricks especially for photographing very small objects like glass beads.  In poking around the net looking for macro lenses of the AF kind I found this item on

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Studying old bones — preservation or perversion? Toronto Star

link on next line

Studying old bones — preservation or perversion?

"The Huron-Wendat Nation is demanding that Louisiana State University return the “stolen” remains of about 200 people. They say researchers improperly gathered the bones from an Ontario ossuary to use for unauthorized student research."

this article is worth a reading since it deals with the following topics:

  • Poole-Rose ossuary near Cobourg 

  • repatriation of remains 

  • Ontario Cemeteries Act 

  • The Feast of the Dead 

  • University of Toronto

  • The newsletter of the OAS is cited in the article as well. 

Toronto Star article on archaeology and development in Mexico

Earthscraper article by Leslie Scrivener

  • Mexico
  • land development uncovering Aztec artifacts
  • museums built to house artifacts
  • design innovation to build down rather than up, 300 metres down "earthscraper" rather than a skyscraper, which has captured architects' interest around the world.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Agatha Christie quote "archaeologist"

 Every woman should marry an archaeologist because she grows increasingly attractive to him as she grows increasingly to resemble a ruin.

Monday, October 03, 2011

Huronia Chapter’s Presidents Report for OAS Symposium in Ottawa October 13th – 16th 2011

As in previous years the Huronia Chapter membership has fluctuated between 25 – 30 members with about 50% overall participation in various chapter activities.
We have had 8 members meetings so far this year including a review of our priorities in at the first of the year and as a result put our Champlain Project over to a committee. We had presentations from Dr Alicia Hawkins on the Thompson/Walker Huron village site, Jamie Hunter on Council Rock, Rudy Fecteau on Plants in Archaeology, Bryan MacKell regarding Simcoe County’s trails master plan, Catherine Sutton on Dr C J Tache’s work in Huronia, Janet Turner on the Mnjikaning Fish Fence Circle. We also held a pool party, BBQ social in July and have our AGM/election slated for December. In addition to our regular activities Laurentian U conducted a field school at the Ellery site and Alicia was kind enough to host an open house to which our members were invited to attend. We also attempted to host a public archaeology day but this was not possible due to time constraints and the bureaucratic red tape seemingly unavoidable in such endeavours.
In support of our members and their activities we publish a quarterly newsletter titled “The Pot” along with the occasional update called “The Sherd”. We also have a webpage courtesy of the OAS doing the web hosting. Our blog has continued with less member’s participation than we might have hoped for but none the less gives us a presence online and has stimulated some public inquiries and information sharing.
Last year's focus on Champlain and the villages he visited in Huronia in 1615 has been formulated into a funding request that has been submitted to a local francophone organization that has a mandate to promote the Champlain commemoration events slated for 2015. This is also the year that we have committed to host the OAS annual symposium.
As a result of our networking with the First Nations community we were asked to become involved in some community consultation regarding the installation of a Bell Mobility communications tower that was proposed in an area rich with archaeological and historical resources (the Ossossane sites). As a result Bell Mobility agreed to do an archaeological assessment even though not required to do so by Industry Canada who acts as the regulating body for these tower installations. We were also reminded that even though these sites are designated as National Historic sites, this affords them no protection from intrusion and or destruction. Communities across Ontario have been asked to develop a protocol regarding communication towers but seem to be discouraged from asking for serious community consultation and from what I can see ignore cultural landscapes and any question of archaeological assessments. These issues might well be considered for action by the OAS advocacy committee in an effort to further the protection of archaeological sites in Ontario. We have also been asked for comment on an industrial site development that is close to some archaeological sites across the river from Ste Marie among the Hurons and visible from the Martyrs Shrine. This development was not asked to do an archaeological assessment and it would appear that the question of historical/cultural landscapes was never addressed.
Another project that we have been invited to become involved with is the Mnjikaning Fish Fence Circle and their project to build a bridge over and an interpretive centre at the Atherley Narrows. This is another National Historic site that is afforded no protection and is now being encroached by developments.
All in all this has been another good year with more potential projects in the works than active members to move them forward.

Respectfully Submitted;
John Raynor
Huronia Chapter of the Ontario Archaeological Society.

Friday, September 30, 2011

A Student's View of Archaeological Field Investigations

                                      The Ellery Site (BdGx -8), and The Dorion Site (BeGw-9)                                                                                                                           May 24 to June 30, 2011

            Under the direction of instructor, Alicia Hawkins, of Laurentian University, and three teaching assistants (T.A.s), twelve students attended the field school for five weeks, then we moved to the university to start lab analysis and take tests on skills learned.  The purposes of the course were to teach practical field procedures, as well as to investigate a potential 15th century Wendat site close by a known 17th century Wendat site, dug in 2008 by Laurentian students under Hawkins's  direction.   It was speculated that this location was the former Jesuit site of Saint Michel. 

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Old Print into Searchable Text

I will add a brief post here and leave the heavy lifting for John Raynor to detail a few small projects in progress by some chapter members....

  • there is a lot of information that was printed on paper in the past on archaeology, typeset and typewritten, and in some cases later photocopied
  • more value and wider use of this information becomes readily available once it moves into a searchable digital character-based form
Ways to move it that we are experimenting with:
  • OCR scan
  • retyping
OCR Scan: Last year I bought a $50 four in one wireless printer which had a software bundle which included a Optical Character Recognition software capability.  How this works is quite simple,  Put your printed page on the glass of the scanner.  Select the function scan to text file. Press Scan start.  And the scanner printer sends the digital file to your wireless connected PC and opens a WordPad file inserts the text.   Takes about three seconds.  The caveat is it is not one hundred per cent accurate.   It can get confused by smudged copier quality, or uneven typewriter letter blackness, etc.    My particular testing which is just prelimary was an old piece of my writing that was printed out of either a daisy wheel printer or dedicated word processor printer from around 1985.  In three pages of text it missed about five characters and created homonyms, which need to get caught by proofreading ("hail" mistaken for "hall").

Thursday, September 22, 2011

More from the Powell Collection

Bill Gibson was kind enough to enhance the photo of the beads that are part of the Powell Collection found in the Ossossane district of Old Huronia. The blue glass cut glass beads are of particular interest to me. I assume that they are Rosary beads, not trade beads like the coloured tube bead also included in the photo but I would like some additional input from those with more knowledge of trade beads and or Rosary beads than I have.
What do you think these blue cut glass beads are from?

BTW - It would appear that the Bell Cell tower that was proposed for the lot where this collection  was found is on hold and will most likely now become part of a new Rogers tower that has been erected 4 km to the south of this site. Good news for the archaeology of Ossossane and the cultural landscape of the district.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

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Ontario Historical Society Launches
Online Heritage Directory

Andrea Izzo, Coordinator of Communications, OHS
Originally appeared in OHS Bulletin Summer 2011 (No. 179)

For Immediate Release | September 6, 2011 | Willowdale, Ontario

The Ontario Historical Society (OHS) is excited to announce a new online service: The Ontario Heritage Directory Online,
a free database resource that will connect Ontario’s heritage community, tourists and researchers at

The Ontario Heritage Directory Online features a database of over 1,600 heritage organizations, heritage sites, museums, archives,
First Nations Councils and Municipal Heritage Committees in Ontario. The Society encourages you to explore your local heritage sites to learn more!

In preparation for the bicentennial of the War of 1812-14, any organizations, historic sites and museums
celebrating bicentennial-related events, exhibits or publications will be highlighted with a War of 1812 icon.

The online Ontario Heritage Directory features an updating tool that allows organizations to keep their contact information current.
Users of the directory can select the “Keep this record up to date” feature and submit any change of address, email address, etc.

The Society would like to acknowledge the support and contribution of The Ontario Heritage Connection Society (OHC)
and its Board of Directors. The OHC was established in 2002 with a mandate to serve as a network for the exchange of information about Ontario’s culture, history,
built heritage, archaeology and natural environment.  It launched its website, featuring a Heritage Connections database soon after. The OHC excelled in fulfilling its
mandate and in March 2011, signed a mutual agreement transferring the assets of the OHC to The Ontario Historical Society.

The Ontario Historical Society would also like to acknowledge the support of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture through the Museum and Technology Fund.

The Ontario Historical Society34 Parkview Ave. Willowdale, ON  M2N 3Y2 | 416.226.9011|
Copyright © 2011 Ontario Historical Society, All rights reserved.
Provincial Heritage Organizations
Our mailing address is:
Ontario Historical Society
34 Parkview
Willowdale, Ontario m2n 3y2

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Saturday, September 03, 2011

They Don't Make them Like They Used To

                                                                       Marg and I visited the D'aoust farm on lot 15 Con 7 Tiny (one farm east of the Powell farm on lot 16) in order to view their collection of artifacts and talk to them about what else might be of interest on their property. Mr D'aoust proudly brought out his "tomahawks". As can be seen, the trade axe with the handle is still in use and has been sharpened recently. This axe has also been used as a hammer and the back of the collar is now flat. both of these axes have markings similar to those in the "Powell Collection". 350 years + and still in use.
We are looking forward to going back for a visit and exploring the property a little further.

Friday, September 02, 2011

A Search for Ossossane and its Environs,

I am looking for a copy of Frank Ridley's 1947 paper "A Search for Ossossane and its Environs" (preferably in an electronic - searcable format). I have a referance to an archaeological site on the S 1/2 of lot 15 Con 7 Tiny twp with a notation that it was found during a surface survey that Ridley made in 1947. I am hoping to find this reference in this paper - I read it somewhere or perhaps made a typo error when entering the info into my database. Any help here would be appreciated as the current property owner wants to meet an talk about his collection and the potential for archaeological resources on his property.

National Historic Sites open to destruction.

When investigating a proposal to erect a cell tower in the vicinity of Ossossane and attempting to encourage Bell Mobility to do an archaeological assessment prior to going ahead with this project they were advised that the Ossossane sites are designated as a National Historic Site. What is interesting to note here is that designation as a National Historic Site affords no protection to the site and that Industry Canada, the federal agency that regulates cell tower installations does not require archaeological assessments as part of their policy.
Best keep an eye out for cell tower proposals, they can be as destructive to a site as any other development. They require fencing and service access roads all of which impact on sites.
I think that the OAS and or the Ministry needs to consult with the federal government to block this loophole before more sites have holes poked in them.
BTW - Bell has now agreed to do an assessment even though not required to. - Sometimes advocacy works!

"Powell Collection" - Ossossane

I went to view the “Powell” collection that is now in the possession of Trish (Powell) and John Hartman at their home in north Tiny. Bill Gibson came with me to photograph the collection (some inserted below) and John Hartman was kind enough to forward me his photos (overview attached). While we were there John Powell showed me an axe collar that he had recently found on the property and gave me a property survey that shows where some of these items where reported found by Mr. Powell Sr. between the late 60s and 1980s. The Powell farm is located on the N ½ of lot 16 Con 7 Tiny township and is now divided in 2 (upper and lower lands primarily) and owned by Mary and Joan Powell respectively along with their spouses.

It is on the upper lands above the ridge that a Bell communications tower has been proposed and this is the same part of the farm that most if not all the artifacts were found by Mr. Powell Sr.
Although numerous finds have been reported on this lot and those adjoining it by people like A F Hunter, Ken Kidd, Frank Ridley, J Hunter, A Hawkins etc. no systemic archaeological study has been done to my knowledge that sheds sufficient light on the chronological migration of the village population of Ossossane over these acreages. We know that various generations of these villages were visited by such figures as Champlain (1615-16), Segard (1623-24), and Brebeuf (1635-39) as recorded in the primary source documentation left behind by Champlain, Sagard and the Jesuits.
What lead me to view the “Powell” collection was the concern raised when I was advised that a communications tower was proposed for this lot and that Industry Canada (the federal oversight body) did not require that an archaeological assessment be carried out by Bell nor does the local municipality have a consultative process put in place that might have involved more stakeholders than those indicated by Industry Canada whose default possession is properties with 90 m of the tower base. Bell has since agreed to do an archaeological assessment but I am not yet sure just how much ground will be covered or what the outcome of the assessment will be but I am sure that this land can yield far more historical evidence than it has to date and I would hope that once this assessment is complete and the results known the archaeological community will make further efforts to map out the district of Ossossane’s place in history.

September 8th Chapter Meeting - The Narrows

Thursday September 8th 2011 – 7PM.

Huronia Museum & Native Village

549 Little Lake Park Rd

Midland, Ont.

(705) 526 2844

Presentation – Janet Turner, Past President; - Mnjikaning Fish Fence Circle.

Purpose of group is the conservancy and preservation of the fish weirs at the Atherley Narrows. Group has speakers that will speak on native history as well as the preservation of the fish weirs. A cross cultural group that welcomes ideas from everyone.

Janet will present on the past, present and future plans (including an interpretive centre) for the National Historic Site that we may best know as the Narrows of Orillia first recorded in the works of Samuel De Champlain in September of 1615.

The presentation will be followed by our regular business meeting including member’s activity reports and upcoming events.

Committee Chairs please be prepared to give updates, if any, on committee activities since our last meeting.

Members and guests are encouraged to attend.

Monday, August 08, 2011

Monday, August 01, 2011

seeking stuff for the September issue of The Pot

Looking ahead to the September issue of The Pot the amount of content surfacing is smaller than usual.

I am asking all chapter members to make a special effort to submit any of the following for the September issue of our newsletter:
  • a brief account of your summer's archaeological activities
  • any archaeological book or resource you have found recently that you would like to recommend to our membership
  • any photos you would like to share from your summer
  • any special plans or projects you are working on, both archaeological and non-archaeological
  • I am curious if you have found any new technology or specific camera that you find especially helpful in pursuing your archaeology,  especially automatic shovel models
send to Bill Gibson, Editor, The Pot  at

Thanks very much, I realize that summer is a busy time, but see if you can take a minute and share some information with the chapter.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011