On Day 13 of Family History Month, search free databases at Library and Archives Canada.


Library and Archives Canada OnGenealogy Family History Month


Library and Archives Canada, LAC, is the National Library and National Archive of Canada. The library portion has an amazing collection of Canadian publications because publishers are required by law to deposit a copy of anything published in Canada. The archive portion collects Canadian government records of historical value and also stores government records when a government department no longer needs them.  The archive also accepts private collections of national significance.

Library and Archives Canada free Ancestors Search



Before you rush off to the LAC for your research, I’m going to give you my main tip for the LAC right here. When you select any database from the above-menu you’ll be brought to that collection’s guide page. I’m always like a deer in the headlights, frozen, panicked, wondering where the search window is. It’s always on the menu in the upper left-hand corner (see below).

How to Search at LAC



Select, “Search: 1851 Census” and you’ll be brought to the Search page (see below).


1851 Census Search page


All online databases at the LAC are free of charge. There are multiple ways to search at LAC including:


Canada has rich genealogy records because they’ve had many immigrant populations including English, Irish, Scottish, American (including American Revolutionary War refugees), German, Ukrainian, Icelandic, Chinese, and Japanese immigrants. Canada was often the country immigrants arrived at before they crossed into the United States. There were no Canadian border patrols before 1908, though some United States immigration records may exist for these border crossings.

LAC has many searchable databases and guides for how to search these databases. Be sure to use the guides to understand what the collections will and won’t contain. Many databases are indexed and you can search them by name.

I have Canadian ancestors including immigrants from Ireland and Wales but also some Loyalist refugees (Americans who sided with England during the Revolutionary War and later moved to Canada). My favorite collections at LAC are ones where I’ve found my relatives.


The 1851 Census

free 1851 Census at LAC OnGenealogy



and Upper Canada Land Records

LAC free Land Records OnGenealogy




They’ve added collections since I last searched here. Take a look below and see what you can find in their databases! Best in your searches, whether they’re fee or free.



Births, Marriages and Deaths


Census and Enumerations


Immigration and Citizenship







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