"The History of the
Catholic Church in the County of Waterloo" is not only the work of a
historical student who has industriously burrowed and, tunneled
into the annals of early times but it is also the compilation of a
scholar to the manner born who has in the very texture of his mind the
flavour of rural life. When gathering the material for this very
informational volume, the author studied the topography of his county;
consulted the aged sons and daughters of pioneer settlers; rummaged
through Mes of old newspapers; inspected valuable documents in Registry
offices; wrote sheafs of letters in quest of knowledge or to verify his
dates; consulted authorities in parliamentary and provincial libraries,
and examined the marriage, death and baptismal registers of central
Ontario. His researches have imparted to his History an
exceptional life and vitality and a particularity of facts, persons and
incidents which constitutes it a depository of valuable information.
The average historian too often contents himself with information gathered from books, and is satisfied to do his work in his own study, but the specialist must seek material for his history from every available source, and with extraordinary industry, care and solicitude. The accumulation of facts for his work is a concern of much trouble and difficulty, and these facts may only be obtained by one who is dowered with special talents and lives close to the people.
Father Spetz fortunately is gifted with an historical intuition and a mastership of detail which impart to his History most valuable qualities.
His book is a work of deep research, fuil and informational on the struggles, trials and heroism of the pioneer priests and settlers of Waterloo County. It will be read with intense satisfaction by the descendants of the stalwart immigrants who, a hundred years ago, crossed the Atlantic, and with strong bodies and brave hearts entered the wilderness and subdued it. But it is to be hoped the volume will also be read and appreciated by many outside the boundaries of Waterloo County, especially by those who are interested in the development and progress of the Catholic Church in our Province in early times.
For in this History we obtain an authentic account of the trials, hardships and heroic lives of priests and people in those early days; we see them hewing log chapels an log buildings from the primeval forest; we behold them, as in a vitascope, going about intent, lovingly intent, on training their children in the morality, decency and religion they brought with them into the wilder-