Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada Genealogy

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Guide to Newfoundland and Labrador ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and military records.

Newfoundland & Labrador Wiki Topics
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Newfoundland and Labrador Information[edit | edit source]

  • The first peoples were the Beothuk, who became extinct in 1829. Today there are Inuit, Innu, Mi'kmaq and Southern Inuit peoples.
  • In 1501 and 1502, explorer claimed Newfoundland and Labrador as part of the Portuguese Empire. Seasonal fishing outposts were established in Newfoundland around 1521, and older Portuguese settlements may have existed.
  • Sometime before 1563 Basque fishermen, who had been fishing cod shoals off Newfoundland's coasts since the beginning of the sixteenth century, founded Plaisance (today Placentia).
  • Twenty years later, in 1583, Newfoundland became England's first possession in North America and one of the earliest permanent English colonies in the New World.
  • Proprietary Governors were assigned to establish colonial settlements on the island from 1610 to 1728.
  • Explorers quickly realized the waters around Newfoundland had the best fishing in the North Atlantic. By 1620, 300 fishing boats worked the Grand Banks, employing some 10,000 sailors; many continuing to come from the Basque Country, Normandy, or Brittany.
  • In 1655, France appointed a governor in Plaisance (Placentia), the former Basque fishing settlement, thus starting a formal French colonization period in Newfoundland. In 1713, France ceded to the British its claims to Newfoundland. The French population of Plaisance moved to Île Royale (now Cape Breton Island). French fishermen retained the right to land and cure fish on the "French Shore" on the western coast.
  • Newfoundland rejected confederation with Canada in the 1869 general election. Newfoundland remained a colony until acquiring Dominion status in 1907. The Dominion of Newfoundland was relatively autonomous from British rule.
  • Since the early 1800s, Newfoundland and Quebec had been in a border dispute over the Labrador region. In 1927, however, the British government ruled that the area known as modern-day Labrador was to be considered part of the Dominion of Newfoundland.
  • Newfoundland officially joined Canada at midnight on March 31, 1949.[1]

Getting Started[edit | edit source]

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  1. "Newfoundland and Labrador", in Wikipedia,, accessed 18 December 2020.