Nova Scotia Church Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at


Record Description

These records cover 1720-2001, and dates vary for each parish.

These records include parish registers of baptisms, marriages, deaths, a few censuses, and other records for some Church of England in Canada and Catholic parishes from Nova Scotia. Some parish registers are written in French or Latin.

Nova Scotia church records are generally found in the individual parishes or congregations or in church-diocesan archive centers.

The individual parishes are found in the Nova Scotia Church Records article.

For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in this collection, select the Browse link from the collection landing page.

Record Content

Baptismal records usually contain the following information:

  • Date and place of baptism
  • Full name of child
  • Birth date
  • Some church records record legitimacy of child
  • Parents' names and their residence
  • Father's occupation

Confirmation records usually contain the following information:

  • Name of child
  • Date of baptism
  • Date of birth
  • Names of parents
  • Place of birth of parents
  • Names of witnesses

Marriage records usually contain the following information:

  • Names of the bride and groom
  • Their places of residence
  • Date and place of marriage
  • Names of witnesses
  • Name of officiator at ceremony

Burial records usually contain the following information:

  • Name of deceased and their residence
  • Age of the deceased
  • Date of burial
  • Name of person performing burial ceremony
  • Sometimes, parents' names if deceased is a child
  • Sometimes, a spouse's name if deceased was married

How to Use the Record

To begin your search for baptisms, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • Name of parents
  • Approximate year of birth
  • County

To begin your search for marriages, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • Names of bride or groom
  • Approximate year of marriage
  • County

To begin your search for burials, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • Name of deceased
  • Approximate year of burial
  • County

Search the Collection

To search the collection by image, select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page:
⇒Select the appropriate "County"
⇒Select the appropriate "City or Town"
⇒Select the appropriate "Denomination and Parish"
⇒Select the appropriate "Record Type and Year Range" which will take you to the images.

Look at the images one by one, comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.

As you are searching, it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor’s given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence and age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.

General Information About These Records

Because civil registration of births and deaths was sporadic in Nova Scotia until 1908, church records are a very important source for birth or baptism, marriage, and death or burial information.

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Don't overlook FHL Place Canada, Nova Scotia items or FHL Keyword Nova Scotia items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. For other libraries (local and national) or to gain access to items of interest, see Nova Scotia Archives and Libraries.

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Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We especially need language translations for both content and images. For specific needs, please look for callout boxes throughout the article or visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.

Citations for This Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.  

Collection Citation:

"Nova Scotia, Church Records, 1720-2001" Images. FamilySearch. : accessed 2015

Image Citation:

The citation for an image is available on each image in this collection by clicking Show Citation at the bottom left of the image screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Nova Scotia, Church Records, 1720-2001.


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  • This page was last modified on 21 May 2015, at 15:57.
  • This page has been accessed 9,435 times.