Guide to French Canadian & Acadian Genealogy

Getting Started

The Toronto Reference Library has resources in English and French and in print, microfilm, and online to help you research French Canadian and Acadian genealogy.

Searching the Library Website

Suggested Subject and Keywords

Suggested Titles



Using Online Resources

Acadian Genweb

Recommended databases:

(Franco-Ontarian research; membership required)

Réseau du patrimoine franco-ontarien

Digitized book:

Acadian Culture in Maine

In Library Resources


  • Ancestry Library Edition (access from any Toronto Public Library computer)
    Drouin Collection whose records are primarily from 1621 to the late 1940’s. Includes the following databases:
    • Quebec Vital and Church Records 1621 - 1967 (which contains records for all religious denominations)
    • Ontario French Catholic Church Records 1747 - 1967
    • Acadia French Catholic Church Records 1670 - 1946
  • Quebec (available at North York Central Library and Toronto Reference Library) from the Drouin Institute has a number of different databases which are usually linked to digital images, including:   
  •  La France: Catholic marriages up to 1911; baptisms and deaths up to 1849 includes vital records and notarial records and covers  Acadia and parts of Ontario - must be searched geographically.  Comprehensive coverage up to late 1940's ; spotty thereafter through mid-60's

  • Great Collections: includes the Drouin marriage information on men and women up to 1935; searchable by family name

  • Obituaries: internet and newspaper mostly since 1980's or later

  • Quebec marriages and deaths 1926- 1996

  • a number of smaller specialized databases including the Loiselle Marriage Index listed below

Additional sources




    1950 onwards available at Toronto Reference Library
  • Montreal Herald 1814-1817 (selected extracts only) (microfilm)
  • Quebec Gazette 1764-1817, 1862-1873  (microfilm)


Check the Finding Aids for the following:

    • Catalogue of census returns on microfilm: 1666-1891 and 1901 supplement
    • →See online version at

Library and Archives Canada


Toronto Public Library contacts:

Answerline: 416-393-7131
[email protected]

Toronto Reference Library, Humanities and Social Sciences Department, 416-393-7175