Smiths Falls, Ontario


General Church records of St. Francis de Salle

Smiths Falls stands in eastern Ontario and straddles the boundaries of Leeds, Grenville, and Lanark Counties, and is right on the winding Rideau river.  

The construction of the Rideau military canal in the 1820's gave Smiths Falls birth as a prosperous settlement.  Between 1832 and 1848,  the Rideau river was the main route for immigrants heading west, as they past right through Smiths Falls.   There were many rivalries in the early years between American settler and the influx of British and Irish immigrants. 

Follow this link  for pictures and to learn about the immigrant ships

Between the facts that the Rideau river, being a powerful source for mills, the significance that the river was a main travel route, the railroad that came in the 1850's, and that it was located in a 1400 square mile plain of lime-stone,  made it an attractive place to settle.  In 1963, Hershey's Chocolate even came to Smiths Falls to build a factory.

Factories, schools, hospitals, newspapers,  and churches were quickly built.  One church in that area was St. Francis de Sale.  This Catholic church was built  and had its first service in 1829.  It was here, that my ancestors, Thomas and Ellen Kenny attended church.  Many of the records of their children and other relatives are held today, at this church.  Go to this link to St. Francis de Sales for more on this subject. 

Click here for some of the Families that were evicted from the Coolattin Estates, in Ireland, and ended up in or near Smiths Falls, Ontario

Story of Emigration: SouthEAst Wicklow to Ontario

Much more can be learned about Smiths Falls, today, by going to these Smith Falls town websites.

Some of the Families that are connected to the Kennys that lived in or near the Smiths Falls area, are; Hourigan, Balfe, McGuiggen, and Lovely

Most of this information and the B&W pictures were compiled from the book, "Smiths Falls", by Glenn J. Lockwood.

Smiths Falls in 1873                                                            Smiths Falls, in 1888

The rest of these were taken by me in 1997

Library where many family research items are, and the old railway station museum.  More on this railway museum can be found here 

Pictures of the Rideau River and a  Rideau lock station

Picture of the city with the St. Francis de Sales steeple  and the cities water tower