Newfoundland Genealogy

Some Useful Genealogy Resources In Newfoundland

In the ancient years the place was called Vinland by the Norsemen; today it is known as Newfoundland. It is the largest island of North America. The first people to settle there were the Beotuk and they probably came from Labrador. According to the historians the next people that came to settle there were the people nowadays known as Native Americans, a tribe called the Micmac.

If you have ancestors from here, or family living here today it will please you to find there are several sources you can research. There are government offices and agencies where you could dig up important information and more details about your Newfoundland family history:

Department of Government Services and Land

Gives out and keeps the records of birth certificates, marriage licenses and death records. The department has locations all over the island and after filling in an application form you can get the records you need for your research.


Provincial Archives

Store records on historical events and data. The archives have church records concerning baptism, marriage and internment. You may find these records also in the vital statistics register.


Public Library

Has community libraries all over the island, but the capital St John’s has three of them and they keep important documents and records. They all have free Internet access.

* A C Hunter Public Library in the Arts & Culture Centre, also the Provincial Resource Library, supports all the other libraries of the province

* Marjorie Mews Public Library on Torbay Road is in the city’s north-east end

* Michael Donovan Public Library, in Waterford Valley Mall, in St. John’s west end

Non-Governmental Resources

There are several Newfoundland associations and groups to assist people with their research. Amongst them:

* Association of Newfoundland and Labrador Archives (ANLA) in St. John’s. It has an archive of province records that is well kept. And not only that, the association also give and promotes educational programs through workshops and training.


* The Newfoundland Historical Society has the reputation to be the first heritage association in the province. Their goal is to promote both knowledge and public discussion. The society gets membership fees and donations and does publication sales. In spring and fall it sponsors free public lectures, and it publishes bibliographies and books about Newfoundland’s and Labrador’s history you can use in your research of the past.


There are a few other organizations that can help you with your research. For instance the

  • Bay St. George Association in Stephenville
  • Ferryland Historical Society in Ferryland
  • The Alberta Family Histories Society.

Newfoundland’s Grand Banks website was set up to assist in all genealogical research on Newfoundland. It is accessible to everybody and visitors can find fundamental, historical data regarding the province.

Don’t forget to research directories and to visit churches and cemeteries to make your research more thorough and fulfilling.

Last but not least, use the Internet to find out more about your Newfoundland family history and lineage. Any good search engine will give you several genealogy websites with inexpensive, and even free, information.


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