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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 Canadian: Archival Centres  by Ryan Taylor. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).

Provincial Archives (cont.)


Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec

There is a place to email BANQ on their website (go to the Contact Us link on the homepage). Some of the website pages are available in English. The Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BANQ) have ten archival locations:

Centres régionaux de Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec:

Bas-Saint-Laurent et Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine
337, rue Moreault
Rimouski, Québec G5L 1P4
Telephone: (418) 727-3500

930, rue Jacques-Cartier Est, Bureau C-103
Chicoutimi, Québec G7H 7K9
Telephone: (418) 698- 3516

80, boulevard de Gaspé
Gaspé (Quebéc) G4X 1A9
Telephone: 1- 800- 363- 9028 ext 6573

Québec City
Campus de l’Université Laval
Pavillon Louis-Jacques-Casault
1055, avenue du Séminaire
Case postale 10450, succursale
Sainte-Foy Sainte-Foy, Québec G1V 4N1
Telephone: (418) 643-8904
The archives, library and non-print areas have different hours; consult the website for details.

Mauricie et Centre-du-Québec
225, rue des Forges, bureau 208
Trois-Rivières, Québec G9A 2G7
Telephone: (819) 371-6015

Estrie (Eastern Townships)
225, rue Frontenac, bureau 401
Sherbrooke, Québec J1H 1K1
Telephone: (819) 820-3010

Édifice Gilles-Hocquart
535, avenue Viger Est
Montréal, Québec H2L 2P3
Telephone: (514) 873-1100, option 4
The archives, library and non-print areas have different hours; consult the website for details.

855, boulevard de la Gappe
Gatineau (Québec) J8T 8H9
Telephone: (819) 568-8798

Abitibi-Témiscamingue et Nord-du-Québec
27, rue du Terminus Ouest
Rouyn-Noranda, Québec J9X 2P3
Telephone: (819) 763-3484

700, boulevard Laure, Bureau 190-2
Sept-Îles, Québec G4R 1Y1
Telephone: (418) 964-8434

BANQ strongly urge that you phone ahead for an appointment before visiting.

The Archives nationales du Québec (ANQ) were founded in 1920. Among their publications which contained historical materials were the Rapport annuel (1921-1975) and the Bulletin des recherches historiques (1895-1968), which they edited for twenty years. From 1971, Archives nationales du Québec have encouraged a system of regionalization in which the province is divided in nine areas. Their policy is to retain materials in the region of Québec where they were produced. They encourage researchers to go to the office in their area of interest, with the idea that they will experience all that the province has to offer. The Archives nationales were joined with the Bibliothèque nationale du Québec in 2004.

As well as the government records management programme and a great many private collections, BANQ have 7 million photographs and other images, and 800,000 maps and plans. They also, unique to Canada, have a provision in their mandate for managing private archives and currently have made contracts with 23 institutions in this way.

In terms of genealogical resources, BANQ offer one of the most complete series of civil registration records in the world. This is because the civil registrations of the province were based on church records until the 1920s, and the Roman Catholic Church records are magnificent. As international genealogical expert Steve Myers has observed, “You can fill out your pedigree charts using the church records alone, and then use the notarial records to add details you wouldn’t find elsewhere and solve the problems you may have had with the church records.”

Records of notaries provided legal documentation for a great many activities in Québec, including (or especially) betrothals. BANQ have records for 2000 notaries from the seventeenth century to the 1920s, and also records of 400 land surveyors, mostly nineteenth century. The notarial records are all on microfilm and available on interlibrary loan. They can also be purchased, along with other BANQ microfilm such as the actes civiles, from Fédération des familles souches du Québec website. The notarial records are also being published in book and CD-ROM forms by Archiv-Histo, who cooperated with the Chambre des notaires du Québec to produce a data bank called Parchemin, which indexes the notarial records. The online database for Parchemin is no longer available so Archiv-Histo publications can be accessed.

BANQ have their own online database for their collections, PISTARD. See the Pistard Archival Tool (in French only) on their website.

The BANQ website stresses the welcome researchers will receive from staff, who can instruct in the use of the archives. Queries are accepted by mail, fax or email (using their website form). No telephone queries are allowed. Researchers are asked to make their questions brief and clear, and they can expect a reply in four to six weeks.

Because so much of the basic genealogical information for Québec is available in printed form, on microfilm or microfiche, or in databases available through libraries or online, BANQ wisely suggest that researchers should examine these other possibilities before coming to the archives.

It should be clear that researchers working in Québec will find that the records are in French, and the working language of archives there is also French.


Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online courses

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.

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