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The Public Record Office in Kew, England holds records regarding emigration to Canada, and some for the United States of America. The chief sources of information are the records of the Colonial Office, and those of the Board of Trade and the Treasury.
Modern records of the Board of Trade can give assistance in tracing emigrants. The sea going Passenger Lists, Outwards (BT 27), from 1890 to 1960, contain the names of the persons leaving the United Kingdom from ports within England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland for final destinations outside of Europe and the Mediterranean Sea.
The lists are arranged under the names of the ports of departure. Many lists earlier in date than 1890 were destroyed by order of the Board in 1900, but a few escaped destruction and are included in this series.
Records of the Colonial OfficeColonial Office records mainly deal with the North American colonies which later became Canada. The following records are available:
Records of the TreasuryCorrespondence of the Treasury, to 1920, is in T 1 , Treasury: Papers. Registers in T 2 , T 3 , and T 4 , and indexes in T 108 , show colonial business handled by the Treasury, and include references to individuals in the colonies or planning to emigrate.
The following records contain references to America.
Records of the Foreign OfficePassport Registers, 1795 to 1898 (FO 610 ) contain entries, in chronological and numerical order, of the names, destinations and referees of all those who applied for passports. Indexes of names in FO 611 give the date of issue and serial number of each passport (1851 to 1862, and 1874 to 1898).
Records of the Board of TradeBoard of Trade Outwards Passenger Lists, 1890 to 1960 (BT 27 ) are lists of passengers leaving the United Kingdom by sea, arranged by date and port of departure. The name, age, occupation and place of residence of each passenger is given. Lists earlier than 1890 no longer exist.
Registers of Passenger Lists, 1906 to 1951, are held in BT 32 . Before 1920 they give, under the different ports, the names of ships and the month of arrival and departure. After 1920 the exact date of arrival and departure is recorded. Before 1908 the registers relate only to the ports of Southampton, Bristol and Weymouth.
Other Record Sources
Search PROCAT, the online catalogue of the PRO
View the PRO information leaflets
PRO website The PRO will not carry out research for you but you may be able to find records and hire a researcher
Disclaimer: Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information on The Olive Tree Genealogy pages, all transcriptions are subject to human error, and researchers should always check the original source of any list.
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