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Description found in Archives
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Series consists of records relating to the Quarantine Division, Immigration Medical Services and Sick Mariners Service, 1867-1957. Central government activities in public health matters were almost non-existent in the years preceding Confederation. At the time of Confederation, the Canadian federal government's focus on public health matters was limited to the enforcement of quarantine regulations brought about by the influx of immigrants to Canada's shores. In 1868, Parliament passed the Quarantine Act, which provided for the inspection of all vessels entering Canada in order to determine that they were free from contagious diseases. A series of quarantine stations was established at major ports of entry, the most famous being Grosse Isle (Quebec) and Albert Head (Victoria, B.C.). The Immigration Act of 1869 acted in conjunction with the Quarantine Act by requiring Immigration Department medical officers based at quarantine stations to examine the incoming passengers in order to prevent immigrants from becoming either a threat to public health by introducing disease, or a drain on public funds by requiring medical care. The Sick Mariners Act, (1868) was designed to provide all seamen with proper medical services should they fall ill while in Canadian ports and waters. It was administered by the Department of Agriculture until 1872, then by the Department of Marine and Fisheries until 1919, when the Department of Health was created. These records fall into two groups: record books, scrapbooks and registers concerning the activities of the Quarantine, Immigration and Sick Mariners Services, dating from 1867 to 1957, and registry files from the Quarantine Division, dating from 1893 to 1930.
Copyright belongs to the Crown. In order to protect the fragile originals, the microfilm copies of these records must be consulted rather than the originals.
Related control no.
1. 1993-94/435 GAD
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