Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979 .
This article describes a collection of records at
Quebec,  Canada
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Flag of Canada
Location of Quebec, Canada
Record Description
Record Type Church Records
Collection years 1621-1979
Languages French, Latin
Title in the Language Québec catholiques registres paroissiaux
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Various Catholic Church Diocesan Archives, country-wide, Canada

What is in the Collection?

This collection contains Catholic Parish records for the years 1621-1979.

This collection contains images of Catholic parish registers of baptisms, marriages and burials. the records include 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.

Church registration of baptisms, marriages, and burials records in the year 1960 were used to register civilly and provided 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 written in French. Click the link for help reading 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.

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)

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

Collection Content

Sample Images

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

Baptism 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

Marriage records usually contain the following information:

  • 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

Burial records usually contain the following information:

  • 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

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search in the birth records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • The name of your ancestor.
  • The name of the parents.
  • The approximate year of birth.
  • The place where your ancestor lived.

To begin your search in the marriage records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • The name of the bride or groom.
  • The approximate year of marriage.
  • The place where the marriage took place.

To begin your search in the burial records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • The name of deceased.
  • The approximate year of death.
  • The place where the death occurred.

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:
To search this collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select "Browse Images" on the initial seach page
⇒Select the appropriate "City/Town"
⇒Select the appropriate "Parish"
⇒Select the appropriate “Record Type and Years,” which will take you to the images.

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.

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor’s church record, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.

I Found Who I Was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information in these records to find other records that may be useful. For example, if you found a marriage record, calculate a birth year and try to locate a baptism record.

I Can't Find Who I'm Looking For, What Now?

  • 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.
  • Your ancestor may be listed in the parish records but with a different spelling of his or her name

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

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 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.

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.  

"Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979" Database with Images. FamilySearch. : accessed 2016. Citing Catholic Church Diocesan Archives, country-wide, Canada.

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 Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979.

Image Citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979.

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.