After another brain numbing session trying to figure out the logic behind yet another awkward search engine, I literally threw my hands up and powered down the computer, mumbling threats against a major Genealogy-Site-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named, and began reconsidering my career choice.
Sipping my tea, I looked out the window to my lovely back yard. I started to think about other moms who'd lived here with their kids and wondered how they managed back in the day. Feel free to picture a light bulb going off over my head. Of course, I had to run back and reboot the computer. I remembered seeing a link on Olive Tree Genealogy's website for land records, specifically an atlas map for the County of Oxford.
Because I can never for the life of me remember my Lot number I had to scrounge for an old property tax receipt. Once I had this information I was able to find out that in 1876 a Scotsman named Thomas Patterson owned my land! This was interesting, but we all know I had to keep digging.
I checked the 1871 Canadian Census and found Thomas, 48, was a farmer here with his wife, Eliza, 45. They dutifully had nine children, with another one showing up on the 1881 census. There is no mention of them in the 1891 census so I have no idea what happened to them. Yet.
My next step is to visit the local LRO to see if I can find any other interesting tidbits on the Patterson Family.
Seems I just had to literally look under my nose to rekindle my enthusiasm.