To locate church records, first of all, you need to know the denomination and the location where your ancestor lived. You can often find the denomination on census records. However, don't assume that they would have attended a church belonging to that denomination - because of transportation problems, people often simply attended whatever church was nearby. You may have to try more than one set of records. Ontario church records are difficult to find because there is no central repository - they are all over the place!
My sources for some of the following: Genealogy in Ontario: Searching the Records by Brenda Dougall Merriman, and Here be Dragons! Navigating the Hazards in Canadian Genealogy by Althea Douglas (both books which I recommend! Both available for purchase from Ontario Genealogical Society)
Any mistakes here are mine - I have done very little church research for myself and I don't have ancestry in each of these denominations! If you find any mistakes, do let me know (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Please note: Church of England is Anglican, Church of Scotland is Presbyterian.
United Church of Canada: Methodist, some PresbyterianThese records are kept in Toronto at the Central branch of the United Church of Canada. They have published four microfilms of Wesleyan Methodist Baptismal Records which are currently being transcribed for publication by Ontario Genealogical Society. These baptisms are also available online at Bill Martin's website.
$ Book: Wesleyan Methodist Baptisms for Perth County 1844-1898 can be purchased from Perth County Branch OGS.
You also might want to try to get your hands on a copy of the book Guide to Family History Research in the Archival Repositories of the United Church of Canada (Whew! what a title!), Toronto, OGS, 1996.
PresbyterianSome Presbyterian churches joined the United Church in 1925. Others did not. So you should try to find out if the church you're interested in remained Presbyterian. If so, then you need to search in the Presbyterian Archives located in Toronto.
The Diocese of Huron has its archives located in London, Ontario.
They have a webpage with information on their genealogical holdings.
Roman Catholic$ Book: Roman Catholic Marriage Records of Ontario 1828-1870, compiled by Renie Rumpel.
MennoniteThe area has a strong Mennonite history. Check with the Mennonite Archives of Ontario located in Waterloo, and have a look at their Microfilm Holdings (broken link).
You can also search the Canadian Mennonite Encyclopedia Online for the name of a church or city to get information about it and its history.Related topics within Perth County GenWeb:
Vital Statistics (Civil Registration)
About Perth County, Ontario
Welcome to Perth County GenWeb, your online guide to Perth County Genealogy since February 1998! I am Meg Fuller, Your Coordinator for this County site.
I hope you enjoy your visit. Please email me if you have any suggestions or contributions you would like to make.
I hope you find my efforts helpful in your research of your County roots. I am unable to do additional research on your family as I do not have direct access to records. I post everything I have for all to use.
Perth County is located in south-western Ontario in about the middle of the peninsula. There are many small towns and hamlets in this area, and the largest city is Stratford. Stratford currently has a population of about 30 000. This population swells in the summer tourist season! For the most part Perth County consists of rural agricultural land. The other major industry is tourism because of the Stratford Festival.
It is one of the few counties in South-Western Ontario that doesn't touch any of the Great Lakes. Because of its location, and distance from the Great Lakes, it was one of the last areas in Ontario to be settled. People who aren't familiar with Ontario often confuse it with Perth, a city in Lanark County. If it's Perth, Lanark County you're after, or if your reference just says Perth, here's a link to the Lanark County GenWeb. But it was nice of you to visit.