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Nova Scotia, Canada, Boundary Changes and Maps

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Introduction[edit | edit source]

Township boundaries in Nova Scotia have changed very little over the years. County and district boundaries have changed, however, and a township may have been included in different districts and counties at various times.

What You Are Looking For[edit | edit source]

  • Information about boundary changes over the years.
  • Maps of various years which show the boundary changes or census districts.

Steps[edit | edit source]

The following step will help you learn where to find records that may mention your ancestor.

Find the place where your ancestor lived using maps and gazetteers.

The maps and gazetteers listed in the following table will help you learn creation dates, boundary changes, and other information about boundaries over the years. Knowing the place can help you find records that may mention your ancestor.

Source Contents

Public Archives of Nova Scotia. Place-Names and Places of Nova Scotia. Belleville, Ontario: Mika Publishing, 1982.

This contains topographical maps of counties and towns as they existed in 1982. This is an alphabetical list of places in Nova Scotia with a description and history of the location, county, town, or village. It also lists churches, schools, and population of the communities in recent years.

Index to the 1871 Dominion Directory of Canada for the Province of Nova Scotia. Salt Lake City: Family History Library, 1993

This index to names in the 1871 Dominion Directory of Canada also contains township maps of the province and for each county. The Electoral Map found in the first few pages roughly matches the 1881 (not the 1871) census for Nova Scotia. The book also contains the names of the counties and census districts and subdistricts for 1871.

Lovell, John, ed. Lovell's Canadian Dominion Directory for 1871. Montreal: John Lovell, 1871.

This gives the township and county of each community as of 1871. This is important when searching census, land and property, and other recordsand local histories. The directory also lists about half of the heads of households living in each community.

Canadian Board of Geographical Names. Gazetteer of Canada. Nova Scotia. Ottawa, Ont.: Canadian Board of Geographical Names, 1961.

This contains the modern names and locations of all populated places, rivers, lakes, and geographic features.

Maps of Nova Scotia.

Contains maps for 1860 and for Acadia (which included Nova Scotia) 1604-1755. For more maps, see What to Do Next, and click on FamilySearch Catalog.

"Map Showing the Electoral Divisions of the Dominion of Canada," Illustrated Atlas of the Dominion of Canada, pp 89 - 91.

Contains maps that roughly correspond to the 1881 census for Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick.

Electoral Atlas of the Dominion of Canada: As Divided in the Revision of the Voters' List Made in the Year 1894. Ontario: National Archives of Canada, 1998.

This atlas has maps showing the electoral districts and voting precincts of all provinces. These districts and precincts often match the census districts and subdistricts of the 1901 census.

Supplementary Index to Canadian Records: Vol. 3 Eastern Provinces. Salt Lake City: Family History Library, 1985.

This lists county names, county seats, creation dates, and parent counties. It includes recent township maps for Nova Scotia.

Punch, Terence, ed. Genealogist's Handbook for Atlantic Canada Research. Boston, Mass.: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1997.

Includes a section on census records and a historical overview of the province. It contains a county outline map and lists the counties with their creation dates and parent counties.

Schindler, Marc A. Administrative Atlas of Canada. Vol. 1: The Atlantic Provinces. Gloucester, Ont.: Schindler-Spring Family Organization, 1988.

Contains maps of 1988 township, county, district and other civil boundaries. It includes a gazetteer of major towns with the township and county for each.

To find more sources that have maps or give information about places in Nova Scotia, see What to Do Next, and click on FamilySearch Catalog.

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