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New Brunswick

Historical Notes



The Atlas of Canada.

New Brunswick joined Confederation on July 1, 1867.

The first inhabitants of New Brunswick were Mi'kmaq, whose dwellings extended from Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island to the southern coast of the Gaspé Peninsula.

The French established the first European settlement in 1604, calling it Acadia. Victimized by the armed conflicts between the British and French, and left to fend for themselves, most of the Acadians were deported in 1755 to the American colonies and they settled over a wide area, particularly in Quebec and Louisiana.

Some returned to Acadia, only to find that their land had been given to settlers from New England. Henceforth, this area was called Nova Scotia.

After the American Revolutionary War, nearly 14,000 Loyalists settled in the valleys of the St. John and St. Croix Rivers.

In 1784, New Brunswick became a separate colony from Nova Scotia.

Researchers interested in ancestors who lived in New Brunswick use the main types of genealogical sources. There are a number of resources on Acadian and Loyalist ancestors, especially birth, marriage and death records and land registers.

Provincial Websites

Centre d'études acadiennes
[] (available in french only)

Council of Archives New Brunswick


New Brunswick Genealogical Society

New Brunswick Legislative Library

Provincial Archives of New Brunswick
[]. The Provincial Archives of New Brunswick site also makes available Guides
[] on genealogical research in every county.

Saint John Free Public Library

The official provincial government Web site
[] contains useful information about the province and its historic records.

The Canadian Encyclopedia Online
[] allows you to learn more about the history, geography and people of New Brunswick.

Many libraries hold reference books, local histories, family histories and other books on genealogy. Library and Archives Canada allows you to Browse Lists of Canadian Library Web Sites and Catalogues by province.

The sections on What to Search: Topics and Genealogy Links of this site can provide more useful information about how to do genealogical research in New Brunswick. You can also access databases from our Directory of Canadian Genealogical Resources - AVITUS.

To Learn More

You can also consult the following books:

Genealogist's Handbook for Atlantic Canada Research, edited by Terrence M. Punch with the help of George F. Sanborn, 1997. Researching Your Ancestors in New Brunswick, by Robert Fellows, 1978. Starting a Family History Project in New Brunswick, by Robert Fellows, 1995.