The Canada Gazette, known as the official newspaper of the Canadian government, has been an important source for Canadian research for more than 160 years. However, bound volumes of the Canada Gazette were mainly available only in major Canadian libraries.
During the past few years, the Canada Gazette has been digitized, and as of August 2010 the project is 95% complete, including the years 1841 to 1998. Digital images of the Gazette are available online at the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) website.
In the Canadian Gazette, you can find genealogical information such as the following:
- Naturalization lists from 1915 to 1951 for over 700,000 immigrants. The lists provide the naturalization number and series, which are necessary for a researcher to request a copy of an immigrant’s naturalization papers.
- Changes in Naturalization Status lists of those that applied for naturalization, but were rejected.
- Divorce Applications lists in which applications appear at least two or three times (in English and in French). The lists also indicate if the divorce was approved or not.
- Changes of Name Applications lists, in which applications appear at least two or three times.
- Military Medals Awards lists of those receiving recognition in the various wars, including World Wars I and II.
- Transfer of Property Rights announcements, which often give a description of the land area, as well as who the neighbors are.
- Pension Application lists by the Department of Finance, which also give the information required to apply for pensions at different time periods.
- Homeowners and Landowners lists for larger localities.
- Employees lists for various companies.
This is just a sample of the wealth of information that is found in the Canada Gazette.
In addition to the national Canada Gazette, each Canadian province has its own provincial Gazette, covering similar information topics at a more local area. Some provinces have begun to digitize their newspapers, but there is a lot more to be done there. If you put the name of the province in a search engine such as Google, followed by “Gazette newspaper,” you can see what is available at that time for that newspaper in that province.
I invite you to search the pages and images of the Canada Gazette in the LAC website for information about your Canadian ancestors.