Genealogy experts to share tips on family research

Hit a dead end in digging up your family’s story? Help is at hand at the Cloverdale Library Oct. 29

Little Mary ran for help for her mother, Mary Morrison. Help arrived too late. Found in a ditch with knife wounds, Mary died just after their arrival. It was June 1908. Mother and daughter had been walking home through the trails around Hall’s Prairie (Surrey) when they were approached by a stranger who asked if they’d seen a coach pass by recently. Mary barely had a chance to answer when the fatal attack began.

Shock, outrage, and a hunt for the killer followed. Eventually one man was convicted of the crime. In December 1908, James Jenkins was hanged in New Westminster, alongside two others, in B.C.’s only triple hanging.

But did they hang the wrong man?

On Saturday, Oct. 29, join our special guest,

Cloverdale Library’s manager Laurie Cooke, who will discuss this fascinating piece of Surrey history.

At Brick Walls: Sharing Strategies on Tough Genealogy Problems, Laurie will share her research, what records she examined, and the conclusions she’s arrived at.

The Brick Walls event opens with panelists

M. Diane Rogers, Brenda L. Smith, and Peter Whitlock. Our three distinguished experts will discuss what to do when the inevitable happens – running into a brick wall.  In other words, what does a family historian do when their research hits an apparent dead end somewhere along the line?

Cloverdale Library presents Brick Walls: Sharing Strategies on Tough Genealogy Problems from 1-5 p.m. The cost is $20 (including food). Additional $10 if you opt for a one-on-one, 15-minute appointment with an expert.

Door prizes include a free, one-year World subscription to Find My Past.


• 1-2 p.m. Expert Panellists talk (20 minutes each)

• 2-2:30 p.m. Panel takes audience questions

• 2:30-3 p.m. Break – sandwiches and refreshments

• 3-4:15 p.m. Experts meet individuals for one-on-one consultations ($10 for 15 minutes)

• 3-4:15 p.m. Main group of attendees addressed by Guest Speaker Laurie Cooke who discusses a 1908 Surrey murder case

•4:15-4:45 p.m. Entire group reconvenes for final thoughts from the panellists


To register call or visit Cloverdale Library

5642 176A St., Surrey, B.C.


Questions? Email

– Paul MacDonell, Information Services Librarian

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