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November 26, 2011

A New Hobby: Orphaned Ephemera

Ethel Crane Certificate 1899
One of my hobbies is acquiring ephemera from Guelph Ontario.

Both my parents were born there, and my father's Guelph lines go back to the first half of the 19th century.

I know the names of some of the places where my dad worked and I look for items from those businesses.

But I can't pass up a bit of ephemera that has a Guelph connection even if it has no connection to me or my family.

One of the reasons I do this is to feature that ephemera here on the blog. If a descendant sees it and wants it I will happily donate it to them for the cost of shipping.

If no descendant comes forward after a certain period of time, I'm going to donate the items I acquire to the Guelph Civil Museum. Did I mention I also do a bit of genealogical research on the item and the person or persons named?

With that in mind here is my first "up for grabs" Guelph ephemera! I found this item on E-Bay and purchased it for a reasonable price.

Ethel Crane

It is a Guelph Public Schools Certificate of Honor awarded to Ethel Crane for regular and punctual attendance, 1899.

Genealogy Research

A search of Canadian Census records on revealed 1 year old Ethel E. Crane living in Guelph with her parents George C. & Hannah E. Crane. An older sister (3 year old Sarah) is also found with the family.  George was born in Ontario of English parents.

1901 census finds them still in Guelph but the family has grown to include little sisters Carrie M. age 9 and Florence H. age 1 . George's date of birth is recorded as 20 January 1959 in Ontario.

By 1911 Ethel is gone but the family still lived in Guelph and another sister Marguerite age 6 has been born. Ethel's grandmother Sarah Lester age 72 is living with them so that gave me the maiden name of Ethel's mother Hannah. Sarah says she was born in England in Febuary 1839 and immigrated to Canada in 1854.

Further research found that Sarah Lester's husband (and Ethel Crane's father) was Joseph Lester born circa 1834 England and died July 1893 in Guelph.

In 1907 Ethel Elizabeth Crane age 18 married Thomas C. Clayton age 20 in Guelph, Wellington County Ontario.  In May 1910 they had a son Thomas Alexander Clayton born in York County Ontario.

Poor Ethel died in Toronto, York County Ontario in August 1935 at the age of 46. Her husband Thomas Clayton was the informant.

Looking for a Home for Ethel's Certificate

I do not know what happened to Ethel's son Thomas, but perhaps he had family. Ethel's sisters may also have descendants who are interested in preserving family memorabilia.

Someone in that line might like to have Ethel's Certificate so if anyone is a descendant please contact me by clicking on my Profile in the side bar of this blog and using the email address found there. I'd love to see Ethel's Certificate go to someone who will treasure it.


Julie said...

I have family from the Guelph, Woodstock area, but sadly this one does not ring a bell. I hope you find a home for it.


Leaves of Heritage Genealogy said...


This is a link to a tree that has Thomas Alexander and his wife Elizabeth Jennings Stewart, with whom he had at least one child (this person is set to private). I would think it might be worth a try to contact the tree owner MLStruthers.

Keep us posted!