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Ontario GenWeb Project: 1860-1869
Research By Year
1860-1869
  • Overview
  • Timeline
  • Governing Entity

  • Places
  • What's Available
  • Related Material

  • Presented here is a brief overview of what transpired in 'Ontario' between 1860-1869. This is by no means a full account, and many events have been left out. If you are interested in an in-depth view of this time period, please read the sources used as well as other history books that cover this time period.

    Overview

    Ontario did not get its present name until 1867, until then it was known as Canada West.

    A complete Overview is coming soon...

    Timeline

    1861Population of Canada West: 1,396,091
    1861Province-wide Census
    1861(1861-1865) The American Civil War
    1865Québec passenger lists date from this year
    1866Fenian Raids into Canada from the US
    1867Census taking becomes a legal requirement
    1867The three provinces of British North America (Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick) are united in Confederation / The former province of Canada is divided into Ontario and Québec, and Canada West is renamed Ontario (1 July 1867). Canada Day is born!
    1868Vote is given to male British subjects 21 years old, who own, rent or occupy property of specified values
    1869Required registration of births, marriages, and deaths commences. Known as Vital Statistics (Civil Registration)

    Do you know of any other significant events that occurred during this decade?

    Your name:

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    Date of Event:

    Event:

    Please Note: Queries sent through this form will be deleted & ignored! This form is for providing information, not requesting help. Use our Help page

                             

    Governing Entity

    Sovereign:

  • Victoria [1837-1901] Queen of England
    Canada's Head of State; Ruling Monarch of Britain

    Prime Minister of Canada:

  • Sir John A. Macdonald [1867-1873] {Liberal-Conservative}
    Head of Canada's government. Usually the leader of the political party that received the most seats in the House of Commons at the last federal election becomes Prime Minister for a four year term.

    Governor General of Canada:

  • Sir Edmund Walker Head [1854-1861]
  • Charles Stanley, Viscount Monck of Ballytrammon [1861-1869]
  • Lord Lisgar [1869-1872]
    Personal representative of the Sovereign and acting out the duties of Canada's Head of State on their behalf. Also is Commander-in-Chief of the Canadian Armed Forces. Governor General's are chosen by the Prime Minister and appointed by the sovereign. This role is mostly ceremonial, and lasts 5-7 years.

    Lieutenant Governor of Canada:

  • Sir Edmund Walker Head [1854-1861]
  • Charles Stanley, Viscount Monck of Ballytrammon [1861-1867]
  • Henry William Stisted [1867-1868]
  • William Pearce Howland [1868-1873]
    The lieutenant governor (pronounced lef'ten-ent gov'er-ner) is a representative of the monarch, and appointed by the Prime Minister of Canada for a term of five years. Each province in Canada has their own provincial lieutenant governor.

    Prime Minister of Ontario (now known as "Premier"):

  • John Sandfield Macdonald [Jul 1867-Dec 1871] {Liberal-Conservative Colition}
    Head of Ontario's government.

    What Places Existed

  • Algoma District [Est. 1858]
  • Brant County [Est. 1853]
  • Bruce County [Est. 1849]
  • Canada West [Est. 1841]
  • Carleton County [Est. 1800]
  • Dundas County [Est. 1792]
  • Durham County [Est. 1792]
  • Elgin County [Est. 1851]
  • Essex County [Est. 1792]
  • Frontenac County [Est. 1792]
  • Glengarry County [Est. 1792]
  • Grenville County [Est. 1792]
  • Grey County [Est. 1851]
  • Haldimand County [Est. 1800]
  • Halton County [Est. 1816]
  • Hastings County [Est. 1792]
  • Huron County [Est. 1835]
  • Kent County [Est. 1792]
  • Lambton County [Est. 1837]
  • Lanark County [Est. 1824]
  • Leeds County [Est. 1792]
  • Lennox & Addington County [Est. 1800]
  • Lincoln County [Est. 1792]
  • Middlesex County [Est. 1800]
  • Nipissing District [Est. 1858]
  • Norfolk County [Est. 1792]
  • Northumberland County [Est. 1792]
  • Ontario County [Est. 1851]
  • Ontario [Est. 1867]
  • Oxford County [Est. 1800]
  • Parry Sound District [Est. 1869]
  • Peel County [Est. 1851]
  • Perth County [Est. 1849]
  • Peterborough County [Est. 1838]
  • Prescott County [Est. 1800]
  • Prince Edward County [Est. 1792]
  • Renfrew County [Est. 1845]
  • Rupert's Land [Est. 1670]
  • Russell County [Est. 1800]
  • Simcoe County [Est. 1821]
  • Stormont County [Est. 1792]
  • Upper Canada [Est. 1791]
  • Victoria County [Est. 1821]
  • Waterloo County [Est. 1840]
  • Welland County [Est. 1845]
  • Wellington County [Est. 1851]
  • Wentworth County [Est. 1816]
  • York County [Est. 1788]

    What's Available


    Below are the resources that are generally available for most time periods. Under each title is a blurb telling you if the resource is available for this time period. For more general information on each resource, how to use it, where to find it, click on the title.


    Birth Records
    Until 1869 birth registration was not required. If your ancestor was affiliated with a church you may find a birth record within parish registers; See Church Records for more information.

    In 1869 the Vital Statistics Act was introduced, requiring all births to be registered. However, not all births were registered as this Act wasn't enforced until the 1880's.


    Books
    Books are an often overlooked resource especially now that the internet appears to have all the information you need at your fingertips. Local histories, period histories, and even transcripts are available, not just locally, but worldwide. Is your ancestor hiding in a book?


    Cemetery Records
    Finding a cemetery record for this time period could be hit or miss. Most people were either buried on family land, or in their church cemetery (what was their religion?).


    Census Records
    Starting in 1851 a census was taken every ten years. The 1861 census is available on microfilm.


    Church Records
    Depending on the religion of the church records you're seeking you may, or may not, be successful with your search.


    Citizenship/Naturalization Records
    If your ancestor was a British subject (born in Canada, England, or one of England's colonies) you will not find a Citizenship or Naturalization Record because they were already considered a citizen. If your ancestor was born elsewhere they were eligible to apply for Citizenship or Naturalization after living in Canada for three years and declaring loyalty to the British Crown.


    Court Records

  • Coroner Records
  • Correctional Records
  • Divorce Records
  • Guardianship Records
  • Surrogate Court
  • Wills & Estate Files


    Death Records
    Until 1869 death registration was not required. If your ancestor was affiliated with a church you may find a death record within parish registers; See Church Records for more information.

    In 1869 the Vital Statistics Act was introduced, requiring all deaths to be registered. However, not all deaths were registered as this Act wasn't enforced until the 1880's.


    Funeral Records
    As Funeral Homes were rarely used prior to the late 1800's it's quite likely you will not find a Funeral Record for this time period.


    Emigration Records
    Not available for this time period


    Immigration Records

  • Quarantine Records
  • Ship Lists: If your ancestor was a British subject, or arrived by ship prior to 1865 it's possible but unlikely you'll find them on a ship passenger list.
  • Train Records


    Land Records

  • Land Patents
  • Ontario Land Registry Office
  • Township Papers


    Marriage Records
    For marriages that occurred 1860-1868 there are County Marriage Registers. In 1869 the Vital Statistics Act was introduced requiring all marriages to be registered. However, not all marriages were registered as this Act wasn't enforced until the 1880's.


    Military Records
    Some records are available


    Misc Records

  • Directories
  • Newspapers
  • Biographies
  • Fraternal Organizations
  • Employment Records
  • Education Records
  • Alumni Records

    Do you know of another resource that could be used to research this time period?
    Your name:

    Email address:

    What is the resource?

    How can this resource be used to research this time period?

    Please Note: Queries sent through this form will be deleted & ignored! This form is for providing information, not requesting help. Use our Help page

                             

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