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I’m obsessed by genealogy. I love connecting people’s families together. Along the way, I’ve learned little known facts about a wide variety of topics – history, law, politics, geography, religion, culture, sociology, and much more – and have collected resources along the way.

www.past-presence.com
Lit Happens with host Danica Lorer and guest Linda Yip, Feb 2019

My favourite research interest is the history of the Chinese in Canada, from roughly 1880 to 1967. As well, since I moved to the Prairies, I’ve been uncovering the hidden gems that Saskatchewan has to offer. (We in SK joke we have some of the tightest privacy laws in the country, so we HAVE to uncover the gems.) I’d say I focus my genealogical endeavours in Western Canada – from BC to Manitoba, but of course like any genealogist, I follow where the trail may go. That means:

  • Icelanders in Manitoba
  • French settlers with deep roots in Québec
  • French émigrés from France
  • Métis families with Hudson’s Bay connections
  • Dutch families from Rotterdam, Alkmaar and Zaandam
  • Mennonite, Métis, Irish and Scottish families in Saskatchewan
  • Force 136 and Chinese Canadians in WWII
  • WWI and its impact on Canada, the soldiers who fought and died, the families that were affected
  • Japanese Canadians and the internment period
  • personal interviews with our living libraries – our elders

What’s available for you here?

There’s no end to the ways you can spend money in genealogy, so I like to collect useful, free, content-rich or unique sites, and have them in one place. As well, I like knowing why I should go to a site before I go, because research time is precious. That’s why all my links have an explanation of what you’ll find at the link.

There are two main Resource sections: one for Asian genealogy, the other for general genealogy (the latter organized geographically).

Amazing things happen when you create something really, really niche

Incredible things have happened for me as a result of this site, such as:

  • Driven by my need to know, I broke all the blogging rules to write a 6000 word, 3 part essay on the history of the Chinese Immigration Act and the Dominion Elections Act, and how it affected Chinese Canadians, and then,
    • CBC Radio invited me to come talk about it, and then
    • Professor Kwong at Indiana University invited me to lecture. (Ah, the power of virtual.)
  • Leaped at the opportunity to talk about genealogy, storytelling and literature on TV’s Lit Happens with host Danica Lorer in Feb 2019
  • Was invited to join the Ancestry Canada Advisory Board of Genealogists (Nov 2019)
  • Went to Sze Yup, China to visit my ancestral roots (Oct 2019) with the Heritage of Cantonese Migration Tour
  • Attended my first Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy course on Chinese Ancestry (Jan 2020)
  • Have been invited to present on Facebook LIVE, CBC Radio Vancouver, and OMNI TV (Apr-Jun 2020). See my Media & Events page here.

Throughout my genealogical journey, I have met passionate newbies and generous experts. I could not do what I do without the ongoing conversation and support in the genealogy community.

Interested in some research?

Have a look at what people are saying about me here.

GDPR

Do please see my privacy page at the link below, which is written as clearly as possible and lets you know what information this site collects, what is done with it, what you can do about it, and other super fun topics.