In the event that you are undertaking research on specific properties or persons in Halton County, you will find the on-line Historical Atlas of the County of Halton to be invaluable. Here in Milton we have the added benefit from this on-line source in that this site hosts the original scans of the Halton maps – so we can use all of them in our research. The primary atlas, along with all (or most) of the county atlases can be easily accessed by anyone on the “In Search of Your Canadian Past” web site here:
To demonstrate one use of this on-line resource, we will take a tour! From the above site you can select which county you want to research, so in the case of this example, we can select our home county by selecting SEARCH on that page and then MAPS on the next page, or follow this sequence:
- Select Search Page for People or Maps
- Select Search only for Maps to get Map Index
- Select Halton County (move your mouse over the map or list and SELECT)
Once you are at that page a new group of options opens up, for here you can now search for PEOPLE or you can search for more DETAILED MAPS.
- Generate a List of People (link is below the main map)
Generate a Detailed Map of the Township (move your mouse over the map and SELECT) or:
For the next step, let us assume we want to look at more detail around the Town of Milton, so we would select the map for North Trafalgar, either using the MOUSE/SELECT process on the Index Map or by selecting the map from the above list or these imbedded links. Once you open North Trafalgar you will also see there is an option at the bottom of the page to obtain a larger image:
For the sake of simplicity in this example, we are going to look at details for the property of John Cumming whose property is on the upper most left side of the North Trafalgar map. If you look at the map in the LARGE format you will clearly see the square. [NOTE that if you have somewhat current computer software running for your Internet operations (Explorer, Google Chrome, Opera, Firefox, etc.) you may also be able to “click your mouse” over any of the map images to further increase, or decrease, the map size once the image is open on your screen.] At the bottom of the map is the link to generate an index of people, so lets look for John Cumming’s property: (or follow the links below for the example)
At the bottom of that page you will see that you can either use the ARROWS to move forward and backward through the pages, or you can change the number in the BOX to jump ahead (faster to get to the place in the alphabet to start). In this case, I already know that John Cumming is on page 7, so I select “7” from the drop down box (or click the right arrow 6 times) and we are at page 7. Our John Cumming is on the 8th line from the top and to the right of that you will see a button marked GO, which you want to press:
which provides the details about the property. If you did not already know that the property was located in the northwest quadrant of the map you could SELECT the button at the bottom of the summary table:
You will see the property is marked by a small dark square on the township map on the right side of the screen. If you wish, you can use the arrows on the enlarged version of the map on the left side of the screen to move around the map. With a little experimentation, I also quickly found out that you can use your mouse (left click) to select any other area on the township map – you will see the little brown square move. [NOTEremember for computer mouse operations a “right click” asks a question and a “left click” gives direction.]
That wraps up that part of the exercise, so to start another project just select NEW SEARCH or HOME at the bottom of that page. If you want to stick around for the next part of this example – keep on reading!
The original source of the maps for these projects comes from the same master county atlas of that period. Here in Halton Region, ours are also on the Halinet Network and so you can find these maps and many more details on that site. If you have not been there before, let me take you to the main pages for this step in the process:
The Main Halinet “Halton Information Network”
(if you want to know more about the whole Halinet operation, i.e. Halton Images)
The title page of the “Illustrated Historical Atlas of the County of Halton”
(same as in the above example but you are now on a different site with different information)
If you go to that title page you will now see that there are a number of options at the bottom of the page, so that you can either walk your way through the whole atlas page at a time, or you can select:
The “Table of Contents” is the original document list, so if you want hyperlinks to specific pages pick the “List of Pages” link and then look through the list for what you need. To carry on with the above example of the John Cumming property, we can go and find the map on this web site for North Trafalgar Township (that is number 28 on the list):
There are some interesting aspects of this actual on-line page if you take a look at the details, so put on your “computer geek” hat and follow me.
If you look at the very top of your computer screen when you are at that site you will see that you are still on the Halinet system, as you will see this address:
If you move your mouse anywhere over the map image you will just see the arrow, and if you “right click” – to ask a question about details – you will see an item called PROPERTIES at the bottom of the list, and when you click on that you will see the page you are viewing is actually on the Milton Historical Society web page:
You can quickly get to that page on any of the maps in the atlas by just selecting the “DETAILED VIEW” at the bottom of the page you are reviewing. Going back to the John Cumming example we can then look at the North Trafalgar map in various formats. Remember that if you are looking at a large map, you computer may automatically reduce the size of the image to fit the screen – in which case put your mouse over the image (you will see a “+” or a “-” and so then you “left click” to alternate between the two options.
The clarity of these maps are much better than those on the McGill site but that site has the advantage of being able to do the “PEOPLE SEARCHES”, with the links to the property details. The Halinet site has the advantage in that there are a lot of other maps and images in the list, for example a map of Milton West.
The reason that I showed you this process is to demonstrate that there are not only two sets of ATLAS MAPS on the Internet for the same HALTON COUNTY map, but also that when you are in the HALINET system that there are more maps, although not searchable by property, and there are clearer/larger maps. There is a shortcut to the Halinet maps if you are doing a lot of searching or working on a project where you want all three of the image sizes. In the example immediately above I gave you the SMALL and the LARGE map of Milton from the two different sources – the first on the Halinet site and the second on the MHS site. If you drag your mouse cursor over the two links above you will see the address change in the BOTTOM LEFT corner of your computer screen (or in the upper left if you actually select that image). You can get all three of the images quickly by just changing one letter in the address once you have the MHS map site. For example, here are the three (3) Milton West map addresses:
- LARGE MAP: http://www.miltonhistoricalsociety.ca/halatlas/halatlas032f.jpg
- SMALL MAP: http://www.miltonhistoricalsociety.ca/halatlas/halatlas032s.jpg
- TINY MAP: http://www.miltonhistoricalsociety.ca/halatlas/halatlas032t.jpg
You will see that I have marked the letter to change as “f” (full), “s” (small) or “t” (tiny). With that shortcut you can now change the sizes of any of the maps at any time. This same process works on many other web sites so give it a try. If you want to know where any IMAGE comes from on a web site, just move your mouse over the image then “right click” to ask a question and then select “PROPERTIES“. You can then select and copy that information into your web browser and go to the original source of the image.
You can get to a few of the pages of the Atlas on the Halinet system directly from this link:
I am working on making an internal index for us to use on our research projects, which is not automatic – but I am trying to fix that:
- THIS PAGE: http://www.miltonhistoricalsociety.ca/atlas/index.html
- LINK PAGE: http://www.miltonhistoricalsociety.ca/atlas/links.html
Note that this internal link is in the directory “ATLAS” and not in the main directory “HALATLAS” so as not to disturb the other system.