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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: Manitoba Ancestors by Laura Hanowski. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).
Census and Census Substitutes
Pre-1870 Census Records
The first census was held in the Red River Colony of Manitoba in 1827. The census continued to be taken in 1831-1836, 1838, 1840, 1843, 1846- 1847, 1849 and 1856. These censuses recorded the name, age, religion and marital status of the head of the household, the family make-up as to number of women, number of sons over and under 16 years of age, number of daughters over and under 16 years of age, the type of house, barn and stable, number of livestock, implements and river craft owned and amount of cultivated land. Some years there were questions about the number of servants living in the household, the amount of uncultivated land and the lot number.
At the Archives of Manitoba and the Hudson’s Bay Archives. Also, available on microfilm Number C-2170 through interlibrary loan at your local library from the National Archives of Canada. A microfilm copy is also available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through their FamilySearch Centers.
- Morin, Gail, editor. Red River Settlement Censuses Index for 1827, 1828,1829,1830, 1831, 1832, 1833, 1835, 1838, 1840 and 1843. Also includes the Enumeration of the Village of Grantown or White Horse Plains and the Swampy Indian Settlement and Saulteaux Indian Settlement. Pawtucket, Rhode Island: Quentin Publications, 1998.
1870 Census of Manitoba
A census was taken of Manitoba shortly after it was created as a province. This census is particularly useful because it asked the name of the father of each person enumerated.
Other questions included the name of each person, parish of residence, place of birth, age at next birthday, colour, marital status, citizenship, racial origin and religion.
At the Archives of Manitoba and the Hudson’s Bay Archives. Also available on microfilm number C-2170 through interlibrary loan at your local library from the National Archives of Canada. A microfilm copy is also available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through their FamilySearch Centers.
- Jonasson, Eric, compiler. Surname Index to the 1870 Census of Manitoba and Red River. Winnipeg: Wheatfield Press, 1981.
- Morin, Gail, compiler. 1870 Manitoba Census. Pawtucket, Rhode Island: Quentin Publications, 2003.
1881, 1891 and 1901 Census of Canada - Province of Manitoba
1881 Census of Manitoba
The official census date was 04 April 1881, but it often took until June until it was completed. Lists the name of each person, sex and age, date if born in last 12 months, country or province of birth, religion, origin, whether married or widowed, occupation, whether going to school, infirmities, remarks, the name of the enumerator and the date the census was taken. The agricultural section does not survive.
At the Archives of Manitoba and available through interlibrary loan at your local library from the Library and Archives Canada.
The Family History Library has a database for the 1881 census. Microfilm copies are also available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through their FamilySearch Centers.
- Jackson, Ronald Vern, compiler. 1881 Manitoba. North Salt Lake City, Utah: Accelerated Indexing, c1986.
- Main, Lorne W., compiler. Index to 1881 Canadian Census of Manitoba With Extensions and East Rupert’s Land. Vancouver, British Columbia: self-published, c1984.
Lists the name of each person, sex, age, whether married or widowed, relationship to head of the household, if not related they may be listed as a lodger, country or province of birth, if French Canadian, the place of birth of their father and mother, religion, profession/occupation/trade, whether an employee or employer, if unemployed during the week preceding the census, if an employer the average number of people employed during the year, an employer was to state the number of hands employed during the year, whether one could read and write and whether one was deaf and dumb, blind or of unsound mind, the name of the enumerator and the date the census was taken. The agricultural section does not survive.
On microfilm at the Archives of Manitoba and available through interlibrary loan at your local library from the Library and Archives Canada. Microfilm copies are also available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through their FamilySearch Centers.
Lists the name of each person, sex, colour, relationship to head of the household, marital status, date of birth, age at last birthday, place of birth, whether born in an urban or rural location, the year of immigration, the year of naturalization, origin, nationality, religion, profession/occupation, living on own means, employer, employee, working at trade-factory or home, months employed at trade in factory or home, months employed at other occupation, earnings for trade, extra earnings, months at school in the year, can read and write, can speak English or French, mother tongue (if spoken), infirmities and the name of the enumerator and the date the census was taken.
To find your ancestor in the agricultural census you will need to note the page number and the line on the page your ancestor was listed. Then find the same sub-division in the agricultural census which is found on a separate microfilm. The listings are by page and number on the page then the location, village/city street or lot and block, the number of acres owned and rented, the number of rooms in the house the number of families living in the house, the number of other buildings, the amount of money earned in the last year and the census date.
On microfilm at the Archives of Manitoba and available through interlibrary loan at your local library from the Library and Archives Canada. Microfilm copies are also available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through their FamilySearch Centers. Digitised images of the 1901 Census are online at the Library and Archives Canada web page.
- The South West Branch of the Manitoba Genealogical Society has produced indexes for the following: Rural Municipalities and places: Argyle, Arthur, Blanchard and Saskatchewan, Boissevain -Boissevain village, City of Brandon, Brenda, Cameron, Clanwilliam and Harrison, Cornwallis, Daly, Allice and Birtle, Elton, Greenwood, Hamiota, Harrison, Lansdowne, Langford, Lorne, Louise, Miniata, Minnedosa, Morton, Neepawa, North Cypress/Village of Carberry, Oakland, Odanah and Town of Minnedosa, Pembina, Pipestone, Riverside, Rosedale, Rossburn and Unorganized Territories, Russell and Silver Creek, Sifton, Silver Creek, Shoal Lake and Strathclair, South Cypress, Town of Rapid City, Turtle Mountain, Wallace, Wallace/Village of Virden, Whitehead, Whitewater, Winchester and Woodworth.
- Index to the 1901 Census District of Saskatchewan No. 205. Edmonton: Edmonton Branch Alberta Genealogical Society, 2002
- Automated Genealogy has online indexes for the following districts:
Census of the Northwest Provinces, 1906
Starting 24 June 1906 an agricultural and population census was taken in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Manitoba was divided into the census districts of Brandon, Dauphin, Lisgar, Macdonald, Marquette, Portage La Prairie, Provencher, Selkirk, Souris and Winnipeg. The sub-districts within these districts are identified by townships and ranges, the name of the town, city or particular Indian reserve or reserve number. The questions are: name of each person, relationship to the head of the household, sex, marital status, age, country or place of birth, year of immigration to Canada and post office address. For those under one year the month and day of birth were asked. Question 10 asks for the location of each family. This is either as section, township and range in the rural areas or name of street and house or lot number for urban areas. Questions about livestock included the number of horses, milk cows, other horned or neat cattle, sheep and lambs, hogs and pigs.
On microfilm at the Archives of Manitoba and available through an interlibrary loan at your local library from the Library and Archives Canada. Digitised images of the 1906 census are online at the LAC website.
|The census records were microfilmed in the 1950s and then were destroyed. Many pages were missed, and some are illegible. Always read the record yourself as indexers often find the hand writing difficult to decipher and must guess what is written. Remember that the northern part of Manitoba was part of the District of Saskatchewan for the 1901 census.|
Other Census Records
- Baldwinson, Baldwin L. The 1891-92 Census of Icelanders in Canada: with an introduction and index by Eric Jonasson. Winnipeg: Wheatfield Press, 1980.
- Dyck, John and William Harms, editors. 1880 Village Census of the Mennonite West Reserve. Winnipeg: Manitoba Mennonite Historical Society, 1998.
Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online course Research: Manitoba 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
We welcome updates and additions to this Wiki page.
- This page was last modified on 5 April 2013, at 00:19.
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