Québec, Canada, Boundary Changes and Maps

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Township boundaries in Quebec 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

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

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

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. For further information, see Quebec Historical Geography.



"Table de Concordance Sommaire Entre les Comtés et les Districts de Recensement du Québec, 1792-1981," comprising pages 659-665, Annexe C of René Jetté Traité de Généalogie (Montréal: Les Presses de L'Université Montréal, 1991). Text in French.

This is the best source for correlating Quebec counties with the right census districts from 1792 to 1981. It is arranged by names of counties and census districts and gives the census district for each census year. The table is quite easy to understand even if you don't read French.

"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.

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

This gives the township and county of each community as of 1871. This may help to locate your ancestor since there is no provincewide index to the census. It will identify places to search census, land and property, and other records and local histories. An Internet site has indexed this source for Quebec cities A through C, D through L, and L through M as of January, 2000.

Répertoire Toponymique du Québec / Geographic Names of Quebec (Saint-Cyrille, Qué.: Editeur Officiel du Québec, 1978). Text in French.

Localities are listed alphabetically and gives the canton (township) if applicable and the division de recensement (census division), which is actually the comté (county) as of 1978.

Map of Part of the Province of Quebec.

Contains maps for 1763, 1788, 1795, 1856, and 1874. For more maps, see What to Do Next, and click on FamilySearch Catalog.

Noel Montgomery Elliot The French Canadians 1600-1900: An Alphabetized Directory of the People, Places and Vital Dates 3 vols. (Toronto: Genealogical Research Library, 1992).

An appendix to Lovell's Directory listed above, this gives additional historical place names and their counties.

County maps of Canada (provinces of Quebec and Ontario) 2 vols. (Montreal: G. Mathew's Lith., 1860).

Contains maps as of 1860.

Marc A. Schindler Administrative Atlas of Canada, Vol. 2, Quebec (Gloucester, Ont.: Schindler-Spring Family Organization, 1987).

Contains maps of 1987 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 Quebec, see What to Do Next, and click on FamilySearch Catalog.