Sunday’s Obituary: Annie Koslack

Annie Koslack, nee Bruchanski, was my great great grandmother.

Annie Koslack

February 14, 1974 at Riverview Hospital, Windsor, Ontario, formerly residing at Beausejour, Man. Widow of the late Daniel Koslack, 1967, dear mother of Michael and Mrs. George Nutt (Marie) of Windsor, Ont., and the late Patrick, 1970 of Beausejour. She is also mourned by five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Resting at Russell’s Funeral Home, Beausejour, Man. Saturday, February 16. Interment Monday morning February 18.

Record: Edmond Langlois’ Baptism

Edmond Langlois

Baptism 63
Joseph Elie Edmond Langlois
La dix huit septembre, mil huit cent quatre vingt deux, par nous pretre soussigne a ete baptise Joseph Elie Edmond, ne la meme jour du legitime mariage d’Antoine Langlois et Emma Mailloux. Le parrain a ete Louis Mailloux. La marraine Julienne Gignac.

Joseph Elie Edmond Langlois was my great great grandfather, my father’s father’s mother’s father.  He was born September 18, 1882 in Sandwich West Township, Essex County, Ontario, which would become modern day Windsor.  He was baptised at Assumption church the same day as he was born, and his Godparents were Louis Mailloux and Julienne Gignac.

I found his baptism record in Assumption’s church books, which are part of the Ontario Drouin Collection, an effort by the Institut Généalogique Drouin to microfilm French Catholic church records. The Drouin Collection is available on

Ancestor Story: Edmond Langlois

My great great grandfather (my father’s father’s mother’s father) Edmond Langlois was born September 17, 1882 in Sandwich West, Essex County, Ontario. His parents were Anthony Langlois and Emma Salome Mailloux. He was baptized “Joseph Elie Edmond” the day after his birth at Assumption church in Sandwich, his godparents were Louis Mailloux and Julienne Gignac.

His father was a farmer, and he also became a farmer. On the census of 1891 when he was 8 years old, he lived with his father, mother, older brother Denis, father’s 65 year old cousin Sophie Belleperche and father’s brother in law, 57 year old Thomas Mailloux, as well as two domiciles, Agnes Reaume and Joseph Dufour. They lived on a lot in Sandwich West Township, North Essex County, part of what would become the city of Windsor, Ontario.

Ten years later in 1901, all the same people resided in the household, minus the domiciles. On October 13, 1903 Edmond married Marie Helene “Lillie” Belleperche in Assumption church. On the 1911 census, Edmond lived at lot 71, 2nd concession in Sandwich West township with his wife, their first two daughters, and his brother Denis.

At the time of the 1921 Census of Canada, Edmond, his wife and their four children lived at 31 Elm Ave. in the city of Windsor. Edmond was employed as a motorman, the driver of an electric street car. Windsor was the first city in Canada to have an electric streetcar system. It was introduced in 1886 and operated until the Great Depression in the 1930’s, when the city could no longer afford to maintain it. Plus, Windsor was now the hub of Canada’s automotive industry, and vehicle ownership was comparatively high, pushing out public transit.

Edmond died December 7, 1952 at age 70.

Document: The Ontario Birth Registration of Corinne Bessette

Bessette, Corinne - Ontario Birth


County of Essex
Name: Besette, Corinne
Sex: F
Date of Birth: Feb 6, 1904
Name of Father: Louis Besette
Maiden Name of Mother: Liza Gagnon

Corinne Bessette was my great great grandmother, my father’s biological mother’s mother’s mother. She appears above in a list of births registered in Essex County, Ontario in 1904. Her parents were Joseph Louis Telesphore Bessette, or “Louis” and Clemence Josephine Elisabeth “Eliza” Gagnon.

Note also the other surnames in this record – LaFramboise, Antailla/Antaya, L’Esperance, Pare, Ouellette, Janisse, Rocheleau, Drouillard. These names are some of the more common names of the early French settlers to the Windsor/Detroit area, and they are still around today. They even show up further back in my ancestry – all of them.

This record is found on, in their Ontario, Canada Births, 1869-1913 collection.

Document: Civil Marriage Record of Giacomo DeGrandis and Santa Ambrosi

DeGrandis, Giacomo - Marriage Stato Civile

Provincia di Treviso
Visto il registro degli atti di matrimonio

cognome: DE GRANDIS
in data: di anni 30
cognome: AMBROSI
nome: SANTA
in data: di eta 23 anni
hanno tra loro contratto il matrimonio
in CASTELFRANCO VENETO – il 15.02.1876
come risulta dall’atto Nr. 14 – Parte 1 – Serie/-Anno 1876

Giacomo DeGrandis and Santa Ambrosi are my great great great grandparents. Their daughter Maddalena immigrated to Canada with her husband Arnaldo Morianti and their four sons.  This is an extract from their civil marriage registration,  obtained from the Stato Civile of the Comune of Castelfranco Veneto. It is fairly easily understood by an English speaker – Giacomo DeGrandis, aged 30, married Santa Ambrosi, aged 23 on February 15, 1876 in Castelfranco Veneto, Treviso, Italy. Both were born in Castelfranco. From their ages, you can presume Giacomo was born in 1846 and Santa in 1853, prior to when civil records began to be kept – which was around the time of Italy’s unification – 1861.

Giacomo and Santa are the earliest Italian ancestors I have found so far.


Hi! Welcome to my blog. In this first post I’d like to write a little about the events that led to this blog.

I have always been interested in genealogy, probably because there was so much I never thought I’d know about my ancestors. My mother is of Latvian descent, and for a long time I believed that probably little to no records from this tiny, tumultuous country existed (this is entirely untrue, and I have made quite good progress in finding my Latvian ancestors! My Latvian genealogy blog can be found HERE).

My father, on the other hand, was adopted. We didn’t talk about it much, and he never sought out information about his biological parents. We speculated he could be of Italian or Portuguese descent from his complexion. Then one day, he was contacted by a biological sister who had been hunting down information for decades. We learned that my biological grandparents were of Ukrainian-French Canadian and Italian-French Canadian descent. My father and my newfound aunt stayed in contact through letters and phone calls for years; she lives a fair distance away. Then, more recently (and I’m still not quite sure how!) she discovered the identities (and surnames)of their biological parents. Finally! With surnames, I could begin digging into our genealogy!