Thursday, January 9, 2014

Pre-1865 Immigration to Canada

Library and Archives Canada has just issued a reminder on pre-1864 immigration to Canada -

Validating your ancestor’s arrival in Canada before 1865

“So you have searched the records, and still no trace of your ancestor? If you didn’t find your ancestor’s arrival before 1865, Library and Archives Canada (LAC) has other genealogical resources that can assist in confirming an ancestor’s arrival in Canada.

Where did he or she settle?

Is he or she listed in census returns? LAC’s collection of census databases, which can be searched by a person’s name, can confirm an individual’s presence as early as 1825. Perhaps a reference exists for one of the parents (recorded as the head of the family) or for a sibling.

Many early settlers submitted petitions to obtain land where they could establish their family in Upper Canada or Lower Canada. LAC’s databases provide references to land transactions that give the person’s name, the date of the application and the county or township within a province.

Life events in records

The date of arrival in Canada can be estimated by searching birth, marriage, and death records for first occurrences such as the birth of a child to confirm the presence of the family in a location. Consult our previous blog on how to search for Birth, Marriage and Death Records.

Published sources and the genealogical community

Family histories, historical atlases and other published works can be searched in AMICUS, LAC’s online catalogue. It is also possible that your ancestor lived in a location that published a city directory.

Many genealogical societies have resources specific to where your ancestor settled. Finding aids that describe a location are valuable tools when searching for ancestors”.

Go to the Library and Archives Canada site at

In the end, it all boils down to local records at local archives, local libraries, local museums, local genealogical societies.

Just as a coincidence, I have a column on this very subject in next month’s free magazine In Depth Genealogist at .

It will appear in the February issue.

1 comment:

Canadian Immigration said...

It is really a nice and informative post. Keep it up.