Quebec Census, 1861 (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Quebec Census, 1861 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Quebec,  Canada
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Flag of Canada
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Location of Quebec, Canada
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Record Description
Record Type Census
Collection years 1861-1861
Languages English, French
Title in the Language Quebec Province, Recensements
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Public Archives, Ottawa


What is in this Collection?

Census schedules are on large sheets of paper with preprinted rows and columns. The schedules were organized by province and then by census districts and sub districts.

The Census contains the 1861 census for the independent province of Québec. At this time Québec was referred to as “Canada East.” The census taker took the information on the census day starting March 30, 1861. Census takers were asked to record information about all those who were in each household on the census day. A census taker might have visited a house on a later date, but the information he collected was supposed to be about the people who were in the house on the census day. Enumeration was by census district. Census districts were voting districts, not counties, although most have the same names as counties. For the most part, census districts were synonymous with cities and counties, and sub districts were synonymous with towns, townships, and city wards. Villages, small towns, and parishes were generally enumerated as part of the township in which they were located. Census district and county boundaries were not always the same and there were many variations from location to location. 

This census was taken in 1861 but reflects the population in the year 1860. Canadian census records were taken to enumerate the population for representation, taxation, and other purposes.

The accuracy of the census depended on the knowledge of the informant and the care of the enumerator. Realize that the information may have been given to a census taker by any member of the family or even by a neighbor. Some information may have been incorrect or deliberately falsified. This collection is only an index. Images may be accessed on Ancestry.com ($).

Reading These Records

These records are in French or English. For help reading the records, see the following wiki articles:

French Word List


What Can these Records Tell Me?

Records found in the 1861 Québec Census may include:

  • Names of family members
  • Profession, trade, occupation
  • Place of birth
  • Marital Status
  • Religion
  • Residence if out of limits
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Residents that are members of the family or not members of family
  • Births in 1860
  • Deaths in 1860
  • Type of house

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.

  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible 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 census to obtain the names and ages of family members, which can be used to calculate birth or marriage dates.
  • Use the information to find other records such as birth, christening, marriage, land and death records.
  • Use the information to find additional family members in additional censuses.
  • 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 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 Quebec, Canada Genealogy.
  • Search in the Quebec Archives and Libraries.
  • Search in the FamilySearch Library Catalog


Citing 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.

Collection Citation:

"Quebec Census, 1861." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Board of Registration and Statistics. Public Archives, Ottawa.


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 Census, 1861.


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How You Can 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.