Canada Passenger Lists (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Canada

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Canada Passenger Lists, 1881-1922
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Canada
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Record Description
Record Type Passenger Lists
Collection years 1881-1922
Languages English, French
Title in the Language Listes de passagers canadiens
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Public Archives, Ontario


What is in This Collection?

This collection includes an index and images of ships' passenger lists (also known as ships' manifests or seaport records of entry). It contains records for the ports of:

  • Quebec City, 1900-1921
  • Halifax, 1881-1922
  • Saint John, 1900-1912
  • North Sydney, 1906-1912
  • Vancouver, 1905-1912
  • Victoria, 1905-1912
  • New York, 1906-1912
  • Eastern US Ports, 1905-1912

The lists for United States ports include only those names of passengers who intended to proceed to Canada.

The Canadian government did not keep lists of emigrants. Before 1947, Canadian citizenship was not separate from British, and Canadians moved freely throughout the British Empire. Before 1895, when the United States government began keeping border-crossing records, Canadians moved to the United States with few restrictions. During the early 20th century, consular officials of the Russian Empire stationed in Canada and the United States kept files on former empire residents who sought their aid (to help in filling out naturalization and passport applications or to obtain proof of military service in Russia).

There are very few passenger lists for ships coming into Canada before 1865. The Library and Archives Canada website has posted an index of some lists that have survived.

To Browse This Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Canada passenger Lists, 1881-1922.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

Passenger lists may contain the following information:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Gender (male or female)
  • Nationality
  • Date of arrival
  • Port of arrival
  • Name of ship

Collection Content

Sample Image

How Do I Search This Collection?

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The name of a relative or year of immigration

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

View the Images

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:

  1. Select the Port of Arrival
  2. Select the Arrival date - Year
  3. Select the Name of Ship to view the images.


How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

  • Make sure to fully transcribe and cite the record entry for future reference; see the section Citing this Collection for assistance. Save or print a copy of the image
  • Use the information found in the record to find other records such as emigrations, port records, and ship’s manifests
  • Use the record to learn your ancestor’s foreign and “Americanized” names, if they were different
  • Use the record to learn the place of origin and find their church and vital records such as birth, baptism, and marriage records
  • Use the information found in the record to find land and probate records
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?

  • If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you find possible relatives
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby town or county
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names
  • Look for the Declaration of Intent soon after the immigrant arrived. Then look for the Naturalization Petition five years later, when the residency requirement would have been met. Look for naturalization records in federal courts, then in state, county, or city courts. An individual may have filed the first and final papers in different courts and sometimes in a different state if the person moved. Immigrants who were younger than 18 when they arrived did not need to file a Declaration of Intent as part of the process
  • Check other possible ports of entry

Record Finder

Known Issues With This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.

Citing This Collection

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation

"Canada Passenger Lists, 1881-1922." Database and Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 30 October 2017. Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa, Ontario.

Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.
Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.

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How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

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Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.