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Canadian Passenger Lists

There are no comprehensive lists of immigrants arriving in Canada before 1865. Until that year, shipping companies were not required by the government to keep their passenger manifests.

The National Archives of Canada (NAC) aka Library & Archives Canada (LAC) holds immigration records from 1865 to 1935. The records before 1925 are not indexed. To find a passenger you will need to know an exact date of arrival. There is no easy way to search Canadian arrival records for the unindexed period other than reading microfilm. Ships are on the reel, in order of arrival.

Passenger Lists to Canada Before 1865

There are individual Immigration projects and databases online that may be of help in your search for ancestors

Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsPeter Robinson Settlers sailing 1825 Ireland to Canada
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsPassenger Books of J & J Cooke, Shipping Agents gives sailings from Londonderry to Quebec and St. John New Brunswick from 1847 to 1871
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsSt. Lawrence Steamboat Co. Passenger Records 1819-1836
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsThe Hawke Papers, letterbooks of Chief Emigrant Agent Anthony B. Hawke available at the Archives of Ontario as a searchable database for years 1865 - 1883
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsIndex to Names of Emigrants from the 1845-1847 Records of James Allison, Emigrant Agent at Montreal
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsReturn of Emigrants Landed at the Port of Kingston Ontario, Canada 1861-1882
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsPetworth Immigrants 1832-1837
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsEmigrants from England in New York City Almshouse 1818-1830 254 names of English immigrants to Canada & USA including the name of the ship they sailed on
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsIf you are looking for Irish ancestors, you may want to search the online database Immigrants at Grosse-Île This database has information on 33,026 immigrants whose names appear in surviving records of the Grosse-Île Quarantine Station between 1832 and 1937.

Passenger Lists to Canada After 1865

There are individual Immigration projects and databases online that may be of help in your search for ancestors

Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy RecordsCanadian Passenger Lists, 1865-1922 digitized records, not indexed
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy Records Passenger lists for Ships to Canada after 1865
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy Records Passenger Lists 1925-1935 at ArchiviaNet
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy Records Home Children (1869-1930) indexes from ships passenger lists
Find Ancestors in Immigration Genealogy Records Passenger List Indexing Project for 1900-1921

Passenger Lists to Canada After 1935

Records of passenger lists after January 1, 1936 are in the custody of Citizenship and Immigration Canada. To request a copy of another person's immigration record see Citizenship and Immigration Canada

You need the full name at time of entry into Canada, date of birth and year of entry plus any other info that might help, such as names of other family members travelling together.

Submit an Access to Information Request Form. You must be a Canadian citizen or live in Canada. Proof of death must be submitted (death must have taken place over 20 years ago) or a signed consent form from the person whose passenger record you want.

Different instructions apply to obtain your own passenger record


Ancestry.com has the following Canadian Immigration & Naturalization Records online

Ships Passenger Lists to Canada  Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956
Ships Passenger Lists to Canada Canadian Immigrant Records
Ships Passenger Lists to Canada Detroit Border Crossings and Passenger and Crew Lists, 1905-1957
Ships Passenger Lists to Canada New Brunswick, Canada, Passenger Lists: 1834

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