Town of Renfrew, Ontario, Canada
History and Genealogy


New September 1, 2013:

The following six photos were taken at the McDougall Mill Museum in the Town of Renfrew. This is a terrific large, three story museum
located in the centre of town on the Bonnechere River. It houses a large variety of exhibits and artifacts and is a good place to start
for local history.

Before the Town of Renfrew was named, small pioneer settlement was known as the Third Chute of the Bonnechere. This is referred to 
in the records of Notre Dame Cathedral in downtown Ottawa which sent missionaries to perform baptisms, marriages, etc. Here are three
early examples:

13 Aug 1831    
Baptism of Mary, 3 mos. old, daughter to Dennis Carroll and Ellen Finny from Bonnechere (Renfrew) on the Grand River (Ottawa River) 
Witnesses: James Burke and Elizabeth Murphy   
M. Lalor, Priest

26 Oct 1838
Baptism of Michel, 2 mos. Father: Ignace, an Indian (Algonquin)from the Bonnechere; 
mother: Marie Anne
Witness: Honore Danis 

25 Jul 1842
After one publication of banns, marriage of Hugh Elferty, farmer of Bonnechere, (Renfrew County)to Mary Mulligan of the 
Snake River in the Township of Sidney
John Mulligan & Dennis Elferty

Source for the above three records: Transcription of the Cathedral of Notre Dame registers by Mrs. Ellen Paul.

The Bonnechere River area was home to the Algonquin Nation (now a reserve called Pikwakanagan (formerly Golden Lake)).

McDougall Mill Museum, Renfrew
150th Anniversary Monument for the Town of Renfrew, 1858-2008 McDougall Mill Museum Sign
Heritage Building Plaque, McDougall Mill Museum
View of Bonnechere Rapids at Renfrew View of Bonnechere Rapids at Renfrew
As you tour the town of Renfrew there is a constant reminder of the role played in it's history by M.J. O'Brien. His story is told in the book O'Brien, by Scott Young and Astrid Young - details at our bibliography page.

E-mail Allan Lewis

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