Nova Scotia Vital Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Nova Scotia Vital Records, 1763-1957 .
CID1952893
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Nova Scotia,  Canada
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Location of Nova Scotia, Canada
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Record Description
Record Type Births, Marriages, Deaths
Collection years 1763-1957
Languages English
Title in the Language Nova Scotia Vital Records
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Nova Scotia Archives


What is in this Collection?

This collection is an index to vital records for the years 1763-1957 that was created by the Nova Scotia Archives. These records include registered births from 1864-1877 with some birth entries as early as 1810, delayed births 1836-1907, marriages 1763-1932, and deaths 1864-1877, 1908-1957. Images for these records are on the Nova Scotia Genealogy website.

In 1864, an attempt was made to register vital statistics in Nova Scotia. These records are fairly complete from 1867 to 1874. In 1877, birth and death registration was discontinued, but it began again in 1908.

Nova Scotia was settled by the French in 1605. The French did not keep vital records. Instead, they recorded similar information in Catholic Church records. Very few church records of baptism, marriage, and burial for the French settlers exist before 1702. Church of England records for British settlers began in Halifax in 1749.

What Can these Records Tell Me?

The various records in this collection may include:

Birth records

  • Name of child
  • Date of birth and place of child
  • Gender
  • Names of parents
  • Birthplace of parents
  • Registration date and number
  • Names of witnesses

Marriage records

  • Name of groom
  • Name and maiden name of bride
  • Grooms father’s occupation
  • Bride’s father’s occupation
  • Names of parents for both bride and groom
  • Place of birth for parents
  • Place and date of marriage
  • Names of witnesses
  • Age at marriage

Death records

  • Name of deceased
  • Date and place of burial
  • Date and place of death
  • Occupation
  • Gender
  • Cause of death
  • Date and place of birth
  • Age at death
  • Marital status
  • Name of spouse
  • Name of parents

How Do I Search the Collection?

You can search the index or view the images or both. To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The name of a relative or date of the event

Search the Index

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page then:

  1. Fill in the search boxes with the information you know.
  2. Click Search. This will provide possible a list of matches.

How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images.


For more tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information to find other records such as birth, christening, census, land and death records.
  • Use the information to find additional family members.
  • Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family.
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.

I Can’t Find Who I’m Looking for, What Now?

  • Try viewing the original record to see if there were errors in the transcription of the name, age, residence, etc. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • Collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you identify possible relations that can be verified by records.
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby locality in an area search.
  • Standard spelling of names typically did not exist during the periods our ancestors lived in. Try variations of your ancestor’s name, especially French or Latin versions.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
  • Search the indexes and records of Nova Scotia, Canada Genealogy.
  • Search in the Nova Scotia Archives and Libraries.
  • Search in the FamilySearch Catalog


Citing 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, Vital Records, 1763-1957." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Nova Scotia Archives.


Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Nova Scotia Vital Records, 1763-1957.


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How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

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 also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

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