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February 8, 2010

2010 is the Year of the British Home Child

On Mon Dec 7 Parliament approved 2010 The Year of the British Home Child.

During the Child Emigration Scheme (British Home Children), between 1869 and 1939 (some up to 1948), over 100,000 children ages 1 - 18 were sent to Canada from Great Britain to work as farm labourers and domestics by over 50 Agents - Barnardo, Middlemore, Macpherson, Fegans, to name a few..

Events that have already taken place:
* New Brunswick Provincial Gov't passed 2009 Year of the British Home Child

* Nova Scotia the month of October 2009 was declared

* October 2010 issue of a stamp for the Home Child

* Australia Apologized to 10,000 Home Children immigrated there up to 1967

* Britain to apologize next year

Descendants make up 12%, over 4 million of the Canadian population.

2010 should be a year filled with special events, special displays in libraries and museums across Canada to honour them. If you are a descendant I hope you will get involved in planning some events.

The Welland Museum currently has a display for the Home Children until December 31st.

Maria Rye Home Children Database
Gail Collins 1869-1879
Chris Sanham 1880-1896

You can search theBritish Home Children ships passenger lists from 1865 to 1935 on Library & Archives Canada website.

If you find a name of interest, and if the child was a part of the Dr. Barnardo's homes, you can contact Barnardo's for the records. They can be reached at

My husband has a British Home Child in his ancestry and sending to Barnardo's for his records provided a wealth of informative genealogical detail plus photographs of the child when he was admitted to Barnardo's Homes in 1897.

Marj Kholi's Young Immigrants to Canada website is another must for those seeking a British Home Child ancestor. Descendants can also check the British Home Children Registry for a name of interest.

Another website of interest will be the British Home Children Descendants site.


Jeff said...

As a relative newbie to genealogy research I didn't know this "movement" even happened. Thankfully this post was very well timed because I am trying to piece together some info about my great great grandfather Frederick Weed. He was born in England circa 1880 and I had previously found him in the 1911 Canada census after he was married and had my great grandfather. Today I found who I believe to be him as a 12 year old living in an Ontario household of a different name. I couldn't decipher what the relationship to head of household was so I was a little confused. So reading this post gives me another possibility to investigate. This is very exciting...thanks!

Genealogy Blogger said...

Jeff, I'm glad my post was of help to you! Did you notice in that 1911 census that Frederick said he immigrated in 1889? He would have been 9 years old so he may indeed have come as a Home Child (unless he came with parents or other guardians).

In any case even though you have to allow a year or two on either side of an immigration year given in census, you should find him in 1891 and 1901 Canada census records! See Census Records website and choose Canada for help

Genealogy Blogger said...

Jeff- Your gg grandpa Frederick is shown as a "domestic" (meaning a servant) in that 1891 census. Many Home Children were listed as servants/domestics because that is essentially what they were.

I hope you can find him in the passenger lists to see what Home he was associated with. My husband's ancestor was in Barnardo's and they sent me a huge file complete with photos and tons of detail on the young boy's experiences plus why he was placed with them (death of both parents in England).

The marriage records online show your Frederick marrying Ethel, so both his parents' names are given which means you can trace him in England census records (and probably find his birth record too)

I'm excited for you!


Jeff said...

Yes my Frederick married Ethel and I believe the marriage record you mention lists his parents as Thos(Thomas?) and Eliz.

Once I get to a computer I will definitely start looking into this in greater detail. Thanks again!