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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: French Canadian Ancestors  by Louise St Denis. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).


Research tools available in specialized libraries in Québec

Basic Tools

Parish répertoires (to 2000)
These are the result of the work of many amateur genealogists who have deciphered, transcribed, typewritten and printed the registers of many parishes in Québec as well as elsewhere in Canada or in the US. The majority of these répertoires are transcriptions of Catholic registers, although many transcriptions of other denominations are becoming available. While the majority of these répertoires are marriage répertoires, more and more baptism and sepulture répertoires are being published.

Nearly all Québec marriages are in a répertoire. Many répertoires cover a large area, including counties: Abitibi, Temiscamingue, Pontiac, Gatineau (except Hull), Labelle, Argenteuil, Soulanges, Terrebonne, Deux-Montagnes, Montcalm, L’Assomption, Berthier, Laprairie, Napierville, St-Jean, Iberville, Missisquoi, Shefford, Brome, Stanstead, Sherbrooke, Richmond, Compton, Wolfe, Megantic. Other areas are not counties: Charlevoix-Saguenay, Chicoutimi-Lac-St-Jean, la Cote-Nord, Beauce- Dorchester-Frontenac, Bellechasse-Montmagny-L’Islet, diocese of Rimouski and Gaspé.

MSSS/ISQ/SGQ marriages and deaths consolidated index (to 1996)
This is a file from a department that changed name and mission. The old MAS (Ministère des Affaires Sociales), department Régistre de la population, was responsible to gather and keep the information related to all marriages and deaths in Québec. The ministry is now called MSSS (Ministère de la santé et des services sociaux) and the responsibility to maintain the file on marriages and deaths now lies with the ISQ (Institut de la statistique du Québec). The file is available in a database on CD-ROMs or on microfilms. It contains the date of the event, the names of the individuals concerned, and the parish regardless of religious denomination. The marriage index also contains the registration number that refers to the number of the registration form filled at the time of the event. This is available in the 1926-1996 Québec Marriages and Deaths/ Mariages et décès 1926-1996 database on the Généalogie Québec website.

Québec marriage registration forms (to 1997)
Available on microfilms, it includes the name of both spouses, their places of birth and places of residence before the marriage and after the marriage, their age and date of birth, their occupation, as well as the place of the event. These are filed by registration number, so it is necessary to use the Consolidated index of marriage to locate the number.

Drouin Tools

Drouin microfilms (to 1940/1942 most of the time; to 1968 for Ottawa River region) The Drouin Institute microfilmed all the vital records in the courthouses or the parishes in Québec for all religious denominations, and also in some places in Ontario and the States where many French-Canadians could be found. This collection can be found online on the website.

Blue Drouin, also called La Masculine and La Féminine (to 1935) Another Drouin tool, this one is the index of Québec Catholic marriages. The earlier editions were bound with blue covers, hence the name. The marriages are indexed by the name of the man in one series, the Drouin Men, and indexed by the name of the woman in the other series, Drouin Women. It indicates the name of the bride, the name of the groom, their parents, the date and place of the marriage. Also available on microfiche. There are two periods, 1760-1865 and 1865-1935.


BAnQ microfilms distributed by the FFSQ (Federation des familles souches québecoises) (to 1899)
Contains the registers of BMS microfilmed from the Superior Court of the judicial districts. notaries, guardianships, inventories after death, etc., as well as tools to use the notaries, indexes, and inventories by notaries. They are classified under the name of the parish, Catholic and non-Catholic alike, or the names of the notaries. There are 14,000 films available and they cover almost all the material available at the BAnQ.

Family Search

Family Search (to 1976) The vital records as microfilmed by the LDS at the various churches. Some records have been digitized and are available in the FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.


PRDH (to 1799) Programme de recherches en démographie historique, Université de Montréal - The totality of the Québec Catholic Church registers from the beginning to Dec 31, 1799. Available in book form up to 1765 or as a database on CD-ROMs, or on the PRDH website.

Genealogical Dictionaries

Jetté, René, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles du Québec: des origines à 1730 par (Montréal, Québec, Canada: Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 1983).

Jetté, René, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles du Québec: des origines à 1730 (Boucherville, Québec: G. Morin, 2003).

Tanguay, Cyprien, and J. Arthur Leboeuf, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles canadienne depuis la fondation de la colonie jusqu’à nos jours (Montréal: E. Senécal, 1871).

Leboeuf, Joseph-Arthur, and Cyprien Tanguay, Complément au dictionnaire généalogique Tanguay (Montréal: Société généalogique canadienne-française, 1977).

Dictionnaire national des canadien français (1608-1760) (Montréal: Institut généalogique Drouin, 1965). Called the Red Drouin and indexed alphabetically by the name of the man.

Dictionary of Canadian Biography / Dictionnaire biographique du Canada, 14 volumes (Toronto: University of Toronto, 2000/Québec: Presses de l’Université Laval, 1990), Published jointly by the Université Laval and University of Toronto. Also available in digitized format.

White, Stephen A., Hector J. Hébert, and Patrice Gallant,Dictionnaire généalogique des familles acadiennes, 2 volumes (Moncton, New Brunswick: Centre d’études acadiennes, Université de Moncton, 1999). Covers the period from 1636 to 1714.

Bergeron, Adrien, Le grand arrangement des Acadiens au Québec: notes de petite-histoire, généalogies, France-Acadie-Québec de 1625 à 1925, 8 volumes (Montréal, Canada: Editions Elysée, 1981).

Arsenault, Bona, Histoire et généalogie des Acadiens, 6 volumes (Montréal: Leméac, 1978).


Fichier/Index-cards Files
Here is a list of index-cards files made by genealogists working on répertoires. In French an index-card is called a “fiche” and the drawer in which they were stored a “Fichier”. These all contain marriages. Many have been microfilmed. Information is stored by alphabetical order of the names for varying periods of time.

Fichier Parentèle- Started in 1954 by the SGCF members, and is still being updated. Covers the period from 1621 to today. It contains close to 2,000,000 index cards. Only one copy available.

Drouin Kardex - From 1621 to 1950. Microfilms of index cards from the Drouin Institute gathered by interviews of their clients, containing over 1,000,000 marriages. Contains 32 sixteen mm microfilms. This is the most consulted of the Fichiers. It is used to resolve difficult problems, such as marginal cases, forgotten marriages, or marriages in the States. The information it contains has not been checked by the Drouin Institute and must be verified. This is available in The Kardex/ Le Kardex database on the Généalogie Québec website.

Fichier Histor de René Jetté - 44 volumes from 1731 to 1825. Copies of handwritten index cards, in 4 series. A series, Catholic marriages; B series, Non-catholic marriages (excluding Montréal and Québec city); C series, Non-catholic marriages (Montréal and Québec city); D series, Catholic marriages Gaspé and New Brunswick.

Fichier Loiselle - The most famous, mostly because it has been used by the LDS. It was assembled by Father Antonin Loiselle and contain about 500,000 marriages form 1621 to 1935. This is available in the Antonin-Loiselle File/Le Fichier Antonin-Loiselle database on the Généalogie Québec website.

Fichier Pontbriand - A well-known publisher of répertoires. Contains 51 microfilms covers the period from 1621-1980.

Fichier Fabien - Covers the Ottawa River area, both sides of the river, for the period from 1621 to 1960. Contains 45 microfilms for Québec and 25 for Ontario.

Fichier Rivest - by Lucien Rivest, 41 microfilms.

Fichier Houle


Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online courses Research: French Canadian Ancestors offered by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. To learn more about these courses or other courses available from the Institute, see our website. We can be contacted at

We welcome updates and additions to this Wiki page.

  • This page was last modified on 2 December 2014, at 16:58.
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