PostHeaderIconReminisces - A History and Genealogy of the Shavers of Ancaster

Reminisces - A History and Genealogy of the Shavers of AncasterReminisces‘Reminisces – A History and Genealogy of the Shavers of Ancaster’ copyright 2010, softcover, 193 pages, price $15 plus shipping.

To order, contact Heather Lord by email:; telephone: 519-740-2976; or mail: 7 Mary Street, Branchton, ON N0B 1L0, Canada.

In 1937 Richard Shaver and others determined to hold the first Shaver Family reunion in many years for descendants of William and Mary Catherine Book. Despite being in the grips of the dark days of the Great Depression, it is recorded that as many as a thousand people attended the celebrations that weekend. A highlight to be sure was Richard Shaver’s address and presentation of his hand crafted family tree. The original work is now considered an historical document and has been prominently displayed in first Dundurn Castle and more recently the Dundas Museum in Dundas, Ontario.

The descendants of William and Mary Catherine have gathered every spring since 1937 for a family reunion, to maintain family connections and ensure the family heritage is passed on to successive generations. In 1994, through the research and efforts of Harry Duff, the descendants of William’s siblings also joined the family gathering. The stories that have been shared by various family members at these gatherings provide a fascinating glimpse into the history of these pioneering families and the role various descendants have taken in weaving the fabric of society in this region of Ontario.

We are fortunate that transcripts of some of these stories have come to be a part of our Archives. We are excited to be able to reprint these and other intersting materials from our archives, as they make a most interesting read and provide a unique insight into parts of our family history. In compiling this work we have endeavoured to reproduce the source documents as closely as possible to the original documents. Also included is a CD containing files for all of the photographs and other figures in the book.

No work such as this occurs as a solitary effort. Much credit is due to the members of the 2010 Shaver Family Executive Committee for their assistance in cataloguing the source documents, assisting with the new writing, researching some of the biographical and historical information in support of this new writing, proofreading the final manuscript, and of course their encouragement in undertaking the work in the first place. The members of the 2009-2010 Executive Committee included Heather Lord, Jan Duff, Judith Shaver, Marilyn Pout, Peggy Olmsted, and Peter Shaver. We also thank Lloyd Westbrook, Grant Howell, Shirley Cranston, Fred Hayward of the United Empire Loyalist Association, Hamilton Branch, the Dundas Museum, Art Bowes of the Ancaster Historical Society, and all of those who assisted in assembling the biographical details included at the end of the work.

All of the source documents used for the compilation were typed or text documents. These documents were scanned and processed with optical character recognition software. The resulting text documents were carefully proofread to ensure consistency with the source documents. The text documents were imported into a Microsoft Word file to perform the formatting necessary to convert the material into book format. Finally a PDF file was created to submit for printing. Because of the flexibility in this process, it will be possible in the future to update the work and issue new editions as new material becomes available. Given that there are only a dozen addresses available to us from the 73 intervening years, we hope an updated edition will be not long in the making. We encourage you to look through your family history documents and consider donating some or all of them to our official Shaver Family Archives so that they may be studied and enjoyed for generations to come.

In the mean time, we encourage you to purchase one or more copies of this work for yourself and family members as a fantastic introduction to our shared heritage. All revenues from the sale of this book will go towards supporting the activities of the Shaver Family Reunion committee, in encouraging communication among family members and spreading the word of our wonderful heritage and its place in the building of Southern Ontario.