Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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Access the records: Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979 .
Title in the Language of the Record
Québec catholiques registres paroissiaux, 1621-1979
This collection contains images of Catholic parish registers of baptisms, marriages and burials. It also includes some confirmations and some index entries for Montréal and Trois-Rivières.
The great majority of registers have been well preserved by both Church and state institutions. A few have been destroyed by fire. Because the registers were made in duplicate, a copy may exist even if one was destroyed. Some of the information in the registers has been published.
The earliest, covering events through 1760 and including information from records that no longer exist, is Cyprien Tanguay's Dictionnaire généalogique des familles canadiennes (Genealogical Dictionary of French Canadian Families). A supplement volume is J. Arthur Leboeuf’s “Complément au Dictionnaire Tanguay” (“Supplement to Tanguay’s Dictionary”), which is still in print.
Between 1679 and 1993, priests were required to make two copies of all baptisms, marriages, and burials. The second copy was sent to civil authorities, and these are found in civil archives. In 1796, churches were required to index their registers. Prior to 1800, about 50 given names were used for 70 percent of the children. Further, most French Canadians descend from a small group of immigrants, so the population shares only a few thousand family names.
Priests maintained parish registers from 1621, when the French settled Quebec, to the present.
1960 church registration of baptisms, marriages, and burials served as a means to register civilly and thereby provide legal proof of the life events.
While the form and content of the entries vary somewhat, the general quality of the records is excellent.
These records are in the French language.
For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in this collection, select the Browse.
Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Record collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.
- Parishes in Quebec. Quebec Catholic parish registers. Quebec County Catholic Parishes, Canada.
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These records usually contain the following information:
- Date and parish of baptism
- Name and gender of child
- Child's date and place of birth
- Names of parents, including mother's maiden name
- Names of godparents
- Date and place of marriage
- Name and age of groom
- Names of groom's parents and their residence
- Name and age of bride
- Names of bride's parents and their residence
- Whether parents are living or deceased
- Name, age and gender of deceased
- Burial date and place/parish of burial
- Name of spouse if deceased was married
- Names of parents if deceased is a minor
Other records: Diocesan archives (File 67CD1)
- A little-known collection is available under Québec City/Québec/1659-1848 (520 images).
- Register of confirmations by the bishops of Quebec, (images 6 - 179)
- Register of abjurations (recantations) from December 8, 1662 through May 8, 1757 (images 181 - 259)
- Register of baptisms, marriages, and burials for Beaubassin, in Acadia, February 2, 1680 through May 20, 1686 (images 262 - 274)
- Register of baptisms, marriages, and burials performed by the missionaries serving to the north of Baie des Chaleurs (the Gaspé coast), from February 2, 1680 through January 23, 1757 (images 276 - 313)
- Register of baptisms, marriages, and burials performed at Peticodiac and Chipoudy by fathers Le Guerne and Le Loutre, from June 7, 1753 through April 13, 1755 (images 316 - 325)
- Register of baptisms, marriages, and burials performed by the Jesuit missionary, Jean-Baptiste de la Brosse, who served the needs of Acadian refugees and Indians hiding in the woods, November 16, 1755 through March 19, 1756 (images 327 - 329)
- Various notes, Index, and Transcription of the above acts by Charles PANET, attorney, dated March 1867 (images 330 - 372)
- Register of baptisms, marriages, and burials performed at Iles de la Madeleine by father A. A. Bélanger, from July 2, 1840 through September 21, 1845 (images 373 - 393)
- Registers of baptisms, marriages, and burials performed in the Saguenay missions, from December 6, 1770 through June 7, 1796 (images 394 - 520)
How to Use the Records
To begin your search, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:
- Ancestor's name
- Approximate birth, marriage, or death year
Search the Collection
Browsing the Images
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒Select the "City/Town" category
⇒Select the "Parish" category
⇒Select the “Record Type and Years” category which will take you to the images.
Look at each image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.
Can't Find the Information?
- Search the marriage indexes for the marriage record of your ancestor. Catholic marriage records often tell when a person was born or at least give an age. They also give the parish where his or her parents were living.
- Start searching for birth information in the parishes learned from the marriages.
- Look for the Catholic church records for that place and date. Then search for your ancestor's name in those records.
- Your ancestor may be listed in the parish records but with a different spelling of his or her name. For suggestions on how the name might be spelled
General Information About These Records
Roman Catholic parish registers are the most accurate and helpful of all the French Canadian genealogical sources for identifying individuals, parents, and spouses and for tracing ancestry as well as descent.
These records are not indexed the individual parish registers are organized by years. Most of the collections will have an index either as a separate register with dates that span many years or in the beginning or end of each collection you need to look before you search page by page.
Known Issues with This Collection
For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.
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Contributions to This Article
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
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A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.
Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
Quebec,Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1900," index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org : accessed 1 April 2011). Rose Creven, 31 July 1866; citing Church Records, FHL microfilm 1,031,681; Eglise catholique, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.