Directories are alphabetical lists of heads of households and addresses. Some directories also give the wife's name and the family's address. Directories can help you locate a family, especially when the family does not appear in the censuses. Many city and county directories from the 1840s to the present are available.
To use the census and most other lists efficiently, you should consult the city directories and find the family’s addresses, preferably before and after the year of the listing - people tend to move often in Québec cities. Be sure to check in the Street section, note the Ward or district, as well as the names of the cross streets, and anything else that will help locate the right “division” of what are often very large records.
Directories are probably the most useful genealogical tool when hunting down the residents of the major urban areas. There are a few early ones for Québec City, and Montréal’s first directory dates from 1819, but publication was not an annual event for many decades. By the time of Confederation however, you will find annual directories for the large cities as well as rural or county Farmer’s Directories.
The Library’s bibliography: Canadian Directories, 1790-1987 , tells what exists and where it is held. The listings in the Genealogy and Local History to 1900/ … Bibliography , from the CIHM-ICMH, indicates which are available in microform and so can be obtained through inter-institutional loan services. Be aware that gazetteers and atlases may include directories, e.g. Smith’s 1867 Eastern Townships Gazetteer and General Business Directory which described every community, large and small, and listed businesses and many residents. Three Rivers/Trois Rivières and Sorel are often found in the same Directory, as are Québec City and Levis; Ottawa, Hull and Gatineau; and Montréal with its surrounding suburbs. Sometimes, however, they are not, so check just what geographic area is covered.
The Family History Library has directories for:
|1842-1999||"Annuaires Lovell de Montréal et sa banlieue" includes directories of residents as well as street addresses with all the pages being digitized and available to search online at the website http://bibnum2.bnquebec.ca/bna/lovell/index.html|
|1866–1867||Family History Library film 928171 item 1|
|1888–1889||Family History Library film 934815|
|1915–1916||Family History Library film 928172 items 1–2|
City of Québec
|| Family History Library film 928003 item 2. |
|Includes surrounding cities and counties.|
|1885||Family History Library film 1698149 item 10|
The Family History Library also has:
- Pre-1900 Canadian Directories = La Collection de répertoires d'avant 1900. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Canadian Institute for Historical Microreproductions, 1988. (On 4,214 Family History Library fiche. Not available at Family History Centers.) The set includes directories for a number of cities and counties in the province of Québec.
- For tips on using the 1901 census see Douglas, Here Be Dragons, too! page 26.
- Available on 28 microfiches is Lovell's Canadian Dominion Directory for 1871 Containing names of professionals and business men, and other inhabitants, of the cities, towns and villages, throughout the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island ... corrected to January 1871 (Montreal: J. Lovell ).
- Bond, Mary E., Canadian Directories, 1790-1987: a bibliography and place-name index, 3 volumes (Ottawa: Library of Canada, 1989).
- Genealogy and Local History to 1900: a Bibliography ..., compiled by J. Brian Gilchrist and Clifford Duxbury Collier (Ottawa: CIHM-ICHM, 1995) Old and rare Canadian books, periodicals and serials available on microfiche.
- The Eastern Townships Gazetteer and General Business Directory ... Containing Also Much Useful Information of a Miscellaneous Character (St Johns/St-Jean Quebec: Smith and Co., Proprietors of the "News", 1867) Reprinted by Page-Sangster Inc., 1967.
- Douglas, Althea. "Québec Censuses and Lists of Residents (National Institute)," National Institute for Genealogical Studies (2012), https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/Qu%C3%A9bec_Censuses_and_Lists_of_Residents_%28National_Institute%29.