Monday, September 26, 2016

Highway 17

I love driving Highway 17 along the Ottawa River.
I mentioned in my previous post that those hills have a deep spiritual calling for me. I photograph the hills and that water way at every opportunity.
In a previous incarnation, I  think I was a First Nations person living in this area, known as Kitchi Zibi.

It's a long straight road, a few ups and downs, but not too many twists and turns. It doesn't take us long to get to Mattawa.

Some of the old watch towers have been converted to communications. Not sure of the double towers on the left, but I remember the bigger one on the right from years back, long before we had cell phones, and watch towers were still in use.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

We took a short vacation

Our first stop was a fantastic little resort just outside of Mattawa Ontario. It is called L'Auberge des Pioneers. There are 15 cottages on the MattawaRiver,  just off Hwy. 17.

The property is quite sloping. The smaller cottages are on stilts and connected by a boardwalk.

At night the boardwalk is lit by these really nice lights. 

They have really nice docks, canoes and kayaks but no motorized boats.

This is where I sat to enjoy my morning tea. Note that bag sitting there. It will be important in a bit.

This is part of the lodge that is open 24/7, along with a games room. As the place was technically closed for the season, only these two rooms were accessible. 

View from the water. Isn't this beautiful? There are high cliffs along this water course that are sacred to the First Nations People. Somewhere along this stretch there is also an ochre mine.  Ochre was used by the First Nations people to paint their pictographs as well as "makeup". 

Sunset on the first evening, looking toward "The Gut". This is a narrow channel in the river, but I haven't learned the meaning of "the gut" yet.

There are wild things that are quite tame things at this cottage.  This little fellow and his pal were quite entertaining. They would chase each other up and down the boardwalk.

I have scads more really nice photos for another post or two.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

More Genealogy and history notes

I've mentioned numerous times that my paternal grandmothers line dates back to the earliest days of white settlement in what is now New York.
When I did my DNA test, there was a small percentage of a French bloodline showing. I didn't think I would ever be able to pinpoint where that originated. Yesterday, it all fell into place.
I had a 9x great grandfather named Daniel Turner. Then a document surfaced which said his name was Jean Daniel Tourneur. That sure is a French name....but my ancestor was from Amsterdam, in Holland.
Researching some other archives, I discovered that my man Dan had made numerous trips back and forth between Europe and America. On one of this trips back to the new land, he was accompanied by his French wife and a Dutch born infant son.

Further digging found a document which pulled the whole picture together.
Jean Daniel Tourneur was a draper and a fabric merchant. As Amsterdam was a major market area for fabric, he would have been sourcing his materials there, and transporting them back to America.
Another document described him as a Huguenot. These folks were French Protestants who were persecuted at the hands of the French Catholic majority. In the 16th and 17th century, they ended up in Holland and the British Isles. This is one of the reasons why you will find many folks from these countries with French names.
My Tourneur ancestors were among the original 30 families who settled the part of New York City known as Harlem.  These families intermarried a lot, as did Jean Daniel's children. Among the original 30 patentees,  I can directly trace my lineage to ten of the original families. who ended up coming to Canada as United Empire Loyalists.

This original 1670 Harlem map is from James Riker (yes, the famous prison is named for him).

Daniel Tourneurs patch is that entire strip across the top of the map where we see the seal.


I'm off to read more of the history of the Huguenots.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Deck wars and genealogy stuff

This being Labour Day weekend, there is a fair bit of labour happening around here.
We are really pushing the envelope trying to get the deck finished.
Today we were using up the bits of leftover stain to seal up the framework that will forever be hidden once the floor goes on and the lattice back on the sides.
I used the dark green Thompson Water Seal on any parts that I thought might have the slightest chance of being seen. It is on sale at Canadian Tire this week! It's good stuff and the price usually reflects that.
For the bits in the dark recesses, we broke out the old cans of redwood. This horrible color is left over (2 gallon cans!) from when we framed the house way back in the 80s! They were never opened and surprisingly were still good once they had a good stir. We sheeted the house in milled boards from our own trees. There was no plywood in this house. I'm not sure why we thought we needed to stain it, but we did. So, that ugly color worked out pretty good to seal up the floor joists down under.
What I didn't count on was the amount of that slop that was going to get on me. The hair, down my neck, in my EYES, everywhere. My bright pink Crocs look like funky leopard print. I practically had to bathe in varsol then in liquid laundry detergent to clean up.
But, it's all sealed up and ready to get a floor installed. The floor is going to be finished in the dark green Water Seal. We didn't seal the floor of the last deck so this one isn't going to take on that shabby look after it's first winter.

I made a great contact with my DNA and Genealogy stuff this week.  You might recall that I knew NOTHING of my paternal grandfather or his family until it was too late for my father to tell me anything. A few records, a bit of family gossip and the truth was revealed. This week I was in contact with a woman who is my fathers second cousin.  She had some fabulous photographs of my grandfather as a young man, as well as my great grandmother and some aunts and uncles. My father looked a lot like his grandmother. I look a lot like my father. Isn't it something to discover these things? I also got the name of another cousin who still lives in the old home town. Hopefully she will have even more to share!