Alberta Census Records (National Institute)
The original content for this article was contributed by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies in June 2012. It is an excerpt from their course Research: Alberta Ancestors by Arlene Borgstede. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).
Census records are an important source of information for genealogists. They can identify every member of family and provide such data as names, ages, sex, marital status, address, place of birth, religion, nationality and occupation. Occasionally a census return will indicate whether a person can read and write and/or their living conditions. The first census in Canada was taken in 1666 in the Colony of New France. Various censuses were taken subsequently but most listed only the name of the head of each household and the number of people within. This count was sometimes broken down into sex and age groups. It was not until 1851 that a comprehensive count was made and censuses have followed regularly at ten year intervals.
The National Archives of Canada in Ottawa hold the original films and have published finding guides for them: Catalogue of Census Returns on Microfilm 1666-1891 and Catalogue of Census Returns on Microfilm 1901. The Provincial Archives of Alberta, Glenbow Archives, Calgary Public Library and some FamilySearch Centers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have complete sets of Canadian census films.
The first official census in Alberta was taken in 1881. The Edmonton Branch, Alberta Genealogical Society is currently indexing the 1901 census for Alberta. Draft copies are available at the Alberta Genealogical Society Library, the Provincial Archives of Alberta and the Family Histories Society in Calgary. Publication is scheduled for 1999.
Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online course Research: Alberta Ancestors
offered by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. To learn more about this course or other courses available from the Institute, see our website. We can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
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