August 19, 2017


14° C, Clear

Full Forecast


Advertise With Us

Researching your ancestral roots requires digging, but it's worth it

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 23/3/2014 (1244 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: Searching's situation (the woman whose relatives will not talk about her aboriginal heritage) really struck home with me. I too, prompted an older relative to start a family genealogy, which indeed exposed my Métis heritage, which my father hid from me growing up.

My ancestors were Scottish and were early settlers here, but I am Métis. This has triggered a lot for me personally, including feelings of shame for not knowing my true heritage, or helping the aboriginal community, watching while they suffer, not knowing that my blood flows within them as well. We are all Métis people.

Please tell Searching to obtain a long-form birth certificate, which lists both of her parents' full names. Then, take it to the Centre du Patrimoine at the Centre Culturel Franco-Manitobain (204-233-4888). For a fee, they will do a complete genealogy search and uncover her great-grandmother's name, and other material.

Then, bring the results to the Manitoba Métis Federation (204-586-8474) at 150 Henry Ave. and get an application from the MMF. They will issue a Métis card if Searching has 1\16th of aboriginal blood; it sounds like she does. Encourage her to hang out at the MMF, make friends there, and see what she can do for her identity issue. -- A Proud Métis, Winnipeg

Dear Proud Métis: Thanks for taking the time to offer all this concrete help and support. It will be very much appreciated by the woman who wrote and the many others you will help as well.


Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: The letter from Searching really hit home with me. She can go to many places in Winnipeg for further information. The Manitoba Genealogical Society (MGS) at 1045 St. James St. is the first stop the letter writer should make. Another place to start could be the Métis Culture and Heritage Resource Centre (204-956-7767) at 410 McGregor St.. There's also the Hudson Bay Archives, The Anglican Diocese of Rupertsland and The Latter Day Saints at -- Hope This Helps, Winnipeg

Dear Hope This Helps: Thanks! You have saved a lot of steps for many people out there who are also searching.


Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: A DNA test can reveal markers of person's heritage. Places do this at reasonable rates these days. -- K.M., Manitoba

Dear K.M.: A lot of this is happening in the United States where people's ancestors were brought over as slaves from other countries. They can find out the area they came from through a study of their DNA. Searching might want to look up, which is a sub-section of Genetrack Canada ( It is primarily slated towards paternity testing, with a section at the bottom addressing your interest in older ancestry. Tests can cost between $120 and $200-plus depending on what you want.

A Genetrack Biolabs notation on the same website says they are located in Vancouver and offer the toll free number 1-888-828-1899.


Please send your questions or comments c/o or mail letters to Miss Lonelyhearts c/o Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6

Read more by Miss Lonelyhearts.


Advertise With Us

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.

Photo Store

Scroll down to load more