It was cloudy with showers for most of the week but the 15 campers who attended the Toronto Branch Genealogy Summer Camp in early June didn’t seem to mind. This year’s Summer Camp drew family history enthusiasts from New York State, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Massachusetts, British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario—all eager to make the most of Toronto’s wonderful archives and libraries.
Home base for Summer Camp was the Massey College residence on the downtown University of Toronto campus. The campers and instructors travelled as a group on public transit every day to different repositories, where they enjoyed a tour or tutorial to introduce them to available resources.
This year’s participants visited the Toronto Reference Library, Canadiana Department of North York Central Library, Archives of Ontario, City of Toronto Archives, and their choice of the archives of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto, Anglican Diocese of Toronto, Presbyterian Church in Canada, and the United Church of Canada’s Central Ontario Conferences. A generous block of time was set aside in each day’s schedule for campers to spend tackling their own research with the guidance of local experts.
Genealogy Summer Camp, founded and run by long-time Toronto Branch member Jane E. MacNamara, has been offered almost every year since 1995 and has welcomed participants from England, right across Canada and many US states, as well as local day-campers.
Many campers have found the experience so rewarding that they have returned in subsequent years to do it all again!