New Genealogical Research Tools

March 1, 2021 | Wendy B.

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Genealogy research documents


Discovering your family's past can be as thrilling as any detective work. And now, we have three databases to help you in your quest:

Ancestry Library Edition logo

Ancestry Library Edition

Available from home until June 30, 2021.

Ancestry Library Edition is our largest genealogical collection.  It covers the United States and the United Kingdom, including census, vital, church, court and immigration records. It also has record collections from Canada, Europe, Australia and other areas of the world.  All told, it has over 8,000 searchable databases, comprising over 8.9 billion total records. Normally only available in library branches, Ancestry is available from home until June 30th, 2021.


Heritage Quest logo

NEW: Heritage Quest

Available from home.

HeritageQuest Online  has genealogical and historical sources for more than 60 countries, with coverage dating back as early as the 1700s. It also includes over 500 searchable databases, comprising more than 4.3 billion total records. Here are just a few of the many resources you can explore:

  • Canadian Census Collection, 1851-1916 
  • Birth, Baptism, Marriage, Death and Census Records. More than one billion names from the U.S., Canada, Europe, Mexico, Central and South America, Caribbean, Africa and Asia
  • Cemetery Indexes for the U.S., Canada, U.K. and Ireland, Australia and New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Mexico, Germany, Italy, Brazil and Global Burials at Sea.


Fold3 logo with image of WW2 Air Force soldier

NEW: Fold3

Available from home

The name "Fold3" comes from a traditional flag folding ceremony in which the third fold is made in honour of veterans.

Fold3 offers US military records, including stories, photos and documents of military personnel. It contains millions of records from libraries and archives all over the world, many of which are only available on Fold3. It includes digital images of millions of records preserved in the National Archives that are now becoming available online for the first time. Here are some of the collections represented in Fold3's databases:

  • Black History
  • The Census Collection
  • The Great Depression
  • Holocaust Collection
  • Native American Collection
  • The Vietnam Wall
  • World War 2 Collection.


Additional Resources

Local History & Genealogy at Toronto Public Library: A complete list of resources including books, databases, maps, research guides and more.

Local History & Genealogy Blog: Posts by library staff on Toronto history, genealogical research, and related topics.

Genealogy Research Guides: Collections of useful resources for specific audiences, compiled by librarians.


Edit: Ancestry Library Edition expiry date extended to June 30.