1851 Census

How the Census Was Collected

The 1851 Census marked the second collection of statistics for the Province of Canada. In 1841, the Act of Union created the Province of Canada, consisting of Canada West (present-day Ontario) and Canada East (present-day Quebec). Information on population was also collected for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

While the census for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia was completed in 1851, Canada West and Canada East did not start their collection of data until the following year. Therefore, for Canada West and Canada East, what is known as the Census of 1851 officially began on January 12, 1852.

The enumerators collected information for 2,312,919 individuals distributed as follows:

  • Canada West (952,004)
  • Canada East (890,261)
  • New Brunswick (193,800)
  • Nova Scotia (276,854)

From Paper to Microfilm

In 1955, the Dominion Bureau of Statistics was authorized by the Public Records Committee to microfilm and destroy the original paper records of the 1851 Census. As a result, only a microfilm copy of the census exists as an archival holding. The microfilming of these records was not of consistent quality and not all images are readable.

The digitized images found on the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) website have been made by scanning the microfilms of the 1851 Census. As exact copies, a page that was unreadable on microfilm will also be unreadable on your computer screen. Title pages from the microfilm have not been scanned, and contained this information:

  • Census year (i.e. 1851)
  • Province
  • County name
  • Township name

Important note: When the microfilms were created, the original census schedules were divided into four parts. Page numbering has been established to distinguish between the separate pages for each census area and the four parts of a schedule. It is typically identified by a handwritten number at the top of the first page. Thus, the numbers "1," "2," "3," "4," etc., represent a page and the letters "a," "b," "c," and "d" represent the different parts of a schedule page. The parts of the schedules are not always consecutively ordered and in some cases may be non-existent.

These records, and those of previous censuses, are described in the Statistics Canada fonds, formerly Record Group 31 (RG31).

Column Headings and Interpretation

When describing ethnic origin or mental capacity, some terms were used by the enumerators in 1851 that no longer reflect current usage when describing a person's background.

  • Column 1. Names of inmates
    Column 2. Profession, trade or occupation
    Column 3. Place of birth
    Column 4. Religion
    Column 5. Residence if out of limits
    Column 6. Age next birthday
    Column 7. Sex: male
    Column 8. Sex: female
    Column 9. Married or single
    Column 10. Widowers or widows
    Column 11. Colored persons: negroes
    Column 12. Residents: members of family: male
    Column 13. Residents: members of family: female
    Column 14. Residents: not members: male
    Column 15. Residents: not members: female
    Column 16. Members of family absent: male
    Column 17. Members of family absent: female
    Column 18. Deaf and dumb
    Column 19. Blind
    Column 20. Lunatics
    Column 21. Attending school: male
    Column 22. Attending school: female
    Column 23. Birth in 1851: male
    Column 24. Birth in 1851: female
    Column 25. Deaths in 1851: no.: male
    Column 26. Deaths in 1851: no.: female
    Column 27. Deaths in 1851: age and cause of death
    Column 28. Houses: brick, stone, frame, log, etc.
    Column 29. Houses: no. of stories
    Column 30. Houses: no. of families occupying
    Column 31. Houses: vacant
    Column 32. Houses: building
    Column 33. Horses
    Column 34. Cows
    Column 35. Sheep
    Column 36. Pigs
    Column 37. Carriages for pleasure
    Column 38. Carriages for hire
    Column 39. Quantity of land attached to tenement
    Column 40. Shop, stores, inns, taverns, schools, etc.
    Column 41. Manufactures of all kinds – Mills, ship yards etc., their produce, etc. and whether worked by steam or water
    Column 42. No. of hands employed
    Column 43. Remarks

  • Column 1. Names of inmates
    Column 2. Profession, trade or occupation
    Column 3. Place of birth
    Column 4. Religion
    Column 5. Residence if out of limits
    Column 6. Age next birthday
    Column 7. Sex: male
    Column 8. Sex: female
    Column 9. Married or single
    Column 10. Colored persons – negroes
    Column 11. Indians, if any
    Column 12. Residents: members, male
    Column 13. Residents: members, female
    Column 14. Residents: not members: male
    Column 15. Residents: not members: female
    Column 16. Members of family absent: male
    Column 17. Members of family absent: female
    Column 18. Deaf and dumb: male
    Column 19. Deaf and dumb: female
    Column 20. Blind: male
    Column 21. Blind: female
    Column 22. Lunatics: male
    Column 23. Lunatics: female
    Column 24. Attending school: male
    Column 25. Attending school: female
    Column 26. Births during the year 1851: male
    Column 27. Births during the year 1851: female
    Column 28. Deaths during the year 1851: no. male
    Column 29. Deaths during the year 1851: no. female
    Column 30. Deaths during the year 1851: age and cause of death
    Column 31. Houses: brick, stone, frame, log, shanty or other kind of residence
    Column 32. Houses: no. of stories
    Column 33. Houses: no. of families occupying
    Column 34. Houses: vacant
    Column 35. Houses: building
    Column 36. Shops, stores, inns, taverns etc.
    Column 37. Public buildings
    Column 38. Places of worship
    Column 39. Information as to mills, factories etc., their cost, power, produce, etc.
    Column 40. Number of persons usually employed therein
    Column 41. General remarks of the enumerator

  • Column 1. Name of occupier
    Column 2. Concession or range
    Column 3. Lot or part of lot
    Column 4. Number of acres of land: held by each person or family
    Column 5. Number of acres of land: under cultivation
    Column 6. Number of acres of land: under crops in 1851
    Column 7. Number of acres of land: under pasture 1851
    Column 8. Number of acres of land: gardens or orchards
    Column 9. Number of acres of land: under wood or wild
    Column 10. Wheat: acres
    Column 11. Wheat: produce bushels
    Column 12. Barley: acres
    Column 13. Barley: produce bushels
    Column 14. Rye: acres
    Column 15. Rye: produce bushels
    Column 16. Peas: acres
    Column 17. Peas: bushels
    Column 18. Oats: acres
    Column 19. Oats: bushels
    Column 20. Buckwheat: acres
    Column 21. Buckwheat: bushels
    Column 22. Indian corn: acres
    Column 23. Indian corn: bushels
    Column 24. Potatoes: acres
    Column 25. Potatoes: bushels
    Column 26. Turnips: acres
    Column 27. Turnips: bushels
    Column 28. Clover, timothy or other grass seed: bushels
    Column 29. Carrots: bushels
    Column 30. Mangle wurtzel: bushels
    Column 31. Beans: bushels
    Column 32. Hops: pounds
    Column 33. Hay: bundles or tons
    Column 34. Flax or hemp: pounds
    Column 35. Tobacco: pounds
    Column 36. Wool: pounds
    Column 37. Millett (or empty column)
    Column 38. Parsnips (or empty column)
    Column 39. Empty column
    Column 40. Maple sugar: pounds
    Column 41. Cider: gallons
    Column 42. Fulled cloth: yards
    Column 43. Linen: yards
    Column 44. Flannel: yards
    Column 45. Bulls, oxen or steers
    Column 46. Milk cows
    Column 47. Calves or heifers
    Column 48. Horses of all ages
    Column 49. Sheep
    Column 50. Pigs
    Column 51. Butter: pounds
    Column 52. Cheese: pounds
    Column 53. Beef barrels or cwts
    Column 54. Pork: Barrels or cwts
    Column 55. Quantity of fish: cured
    Column 56. Remarks

  • A pre-printed form was used with headings written only in French. For your convenience, those headings have been translated.
    Column 1. Noms des personnes dans la maison (Names of persons in the house)
    Column 2. Profession, état ou occupation (Profession, status or occupation)
    Column 3. Lieu de naissance (Place of birth)
    Column 4. Religion (Religion)
    Column 5. Résidence si elle est hors des limites (Residence if outside of limits)
    Column 6. Âge au jour anniversaire de naissance suivant (Age at next birthday)
    Column 7. Sexe: hommes (Sex: male)
    Column 8. Sexe: femmes (Sex: female)
    Column 9. Marié ou non-marié (Married or single)
    Column 10. Personnes de couleur, nègres (Colored persons – Negroes)
    Column 11. Indiens, s'il s'en trouve (Indians, if any)
    Column 12. Résidents: membres de la famille : hommes (Residents: members of the family: male)
    Column 13. Résidents: membres de la famille: femmes (Residents: members of the family: female)
    Column 14. Résidents: non-membres de la famille: hommes (Residents: not members of the family: male)
    Column 15. Résidents: non-membres de la famille: femmes (Residents: not members of the family: female)
    Column 16. Membres de la famille absents: hommes (Members of the family absent: male)
    Column 17. Membres de la famille absents: femmes (Members of the family absent: female)
    Column 18. Sourds et muets: hommes (Deaf and dumb: male)
    Column 19. Sourds et muets: femmes (Deaf and dumb: female)
    Column 20. Aveugles: hommes (Blind: male)
    Column 21. Aveugles: femmes (Blind: female)
    Column 22. Aliénés: hommes (Lunatics: male)
    Column 23. Aliénés: femmes (Lunatics: female)
    Column 24. Allant à l'école: hommes (Attending school: male)
    Column 25. Allant à l'école: femmes (Attending school: female)
    Column 26. Naissances durant l'année 1851: hommes (Births during the year 1851: male)
    Column 27. Naissances durant l'année 1851: femmes (Births during the year 1851: female)
    Column 28. Décès durant l'année 1851: nombre : hommes (Deaths during the year 1851: Number, male)
    Column 29. Décès durant l'année 1851: nombre : femmes (Deaths during the year 1851: Number, female)
    Column 30. Décès durant l'année 1851: âge et cause de décès (Deaths during the year 1851: age and cause of death)
    Column 31. Maisons: en brique, pierre, charpente, pièces ou autre genre de construction (Houses: brick, stone, frame, log, or other types of construction)
    Column 32. Maisons: nombre d'étages (Houses: number of stories)
    Column 33. Maisons: nombre de familles dans la maison (Number of families in the house)
    Column 34. Maisons: maisons non-habitées(Houses: vacant)
    Column 35. Maisons: maisons en construction (Houses: under construction)
    Column 36. Boutiques, magasins, auberges, tavernes, etc. (Shops, stores, inns, taverns, etc.)
    Column 37. Édifices publics (Public buildings)
    Column 38. Édifices consacrés au culte (Places of worship)
    Column 39. Renseignements relatifs aux moulins, manufactures, etc., mise de capital, force motrice, production etc. (Information as to mills, factories, etc., investment, power, production, etc.)
    Column 40. Nombre de personnes qui y sont généralement employées (Number of persons generally employed therein)
    Column 41. Observations générales par le recenseur (General remarks of the enumerator)

  • A pre-printed form was used with headings written only in French. For your convenience, those headings have been translated.
    Column 1. Noms des personnes dans la maison (Names of persons in the house)
    Column 2. Profession, état ou occupation (Profession, status or occupation)
    Column 3. Lieu de naissance (Place of birth)
    Column 4. Religion (Religion)
    Column 5. Résidence si elle est hors des limites (Residence if outside of limits)
    Column 6. Âge au jour anniversaire suivant (Age next birthday)
    Column 7. Sexe: hommes (Sex: male)
    Column 8. Sexe: femmes (Sex: female)
    Column 9. Marié ou non-marié (Married or single)
    Column 10. Veufs ou veuves (Widowers or widows)
    Column 11. Personnes de couleur (Colored persons)
    Column 12. Résidents: membres de la famille: hommes (Residents: members of the family: male)
    Column 13. Résidents: membres de la famille: femmes (Residents: members of the family: female)
    Column 14. Résidents: non membres de la famille: hommes (Residents: not members of the family: male)
    Column 15. Résidents: non membres de la famille: femmes (Residents: not members of the family: female)
    Column 16. Membres de la famille absents: hommes (Members of family: absent: male)
    Column 17. Membres de la famille absents: femmes (Members of family: absent: female)
    Column 18. Sourds et muets (Deaf and dumb)
    Column 19. Aveugles (Blind)
    Column 20. Aliénés (Lunatics)
    Column 21. Allant à l'école: hommes (Attending school: male)
    Column 22. Allant à l'école: femmes (Attending school: female)
    Column 23. Naissances durant l'année 1851: hommes (Births during the year 1851: male)
    Column 24. Naissances durant l'année 1851: femmes (Births during the year 1851: female)
    Column 25. Décès durant l'année 1851: no : hommes (Deaths during the year 1851: Number: males)
    Column 26. Décès durant l'année 1851: no : femmes (Deaths during the year 1851: Number: females)
    Column 27. Décès durant l'année 1851: âge et cause des décès (Deaths during the year 1851: age and cause of death)
    Column 28. Maisons: en brique, pierre, charpente, pièces, etc. (Houses: brick, stone, frame, log, etc.)
    Column 29. Maisons: Nombre d'étages (Houses: number of stories)
    Column 30. Maisons: Nombre de familles dans la maison (Number of families in the house)
    Column 31. Maisons: Maisons non habitées (Houses: vacant)
    Column 32. Maisons: En construction (Houses: under construction)
    Column 33. Chevaux (Horses)
    Column 34. Vaches (Cows)
    Column 35. Moutons (Sheep)
    Column 36. Cochons (Pigs)
    Column 37. Voitures de plaisir (Carriages for pleasure)
    Column 38. Voitures de louage (Carriages for hire)
    Column 39. Quantité de terre attachée à l'habitation (Quantity of land attached to tenement)
    Column 40. Boutiques, magasins, auberges, tavernes, écoles, etc. (Shops, stores, inns, taverns, schools, etc.)
    Column 41. Manufactures de toutes sortes – moulins, chantiers de construction, etc. et s'ils sont mûs par la vapeur ou par l'eau (Manufactures of all kinds: mills, construction sites, etc., their produce, etc. and whether worked by steam or water)
    Column 42. Nombre de personnes employées (Number of persons employed)
    Column 43. Remarques (Remarks)​

  • A pre-printed form was used with headings written only in French. For your convenience, those headings have been translated.
    Column 1. Noms des personnes dans la maison (Names of persons in the house)
    Column 2. Profession, état ou occupation (Profession, status or occupation)
    Column 3. Lieu de naissance (Place of birth)
    Column 4. Religion (Religion)
    Column 5. Résidence, si elle est hors des limites (Residence, if outside of limits)
    Column 6. Âge au jour de l'anniversaire de naissance suivant (Age at next birthday)
    Column 7. Sexe: hommes (Sex: male)
    Column 8. Sexe: femmes (Sex: female)
    Column 9. Marié ou non marié (Married or single)
    Column 10. Personnes de couleur, nègres (Coloured persons – Negroes)
    Column 11. Indiens, s'il s'en trouve (Indians, if any)
    Column 12. Résidents: membres de la famille: hommes (Residents: members of the family: male)
    Column 13. Résidents: membres de la famille: femmes (Residents: members of the family: female)
    Column 14. Résidents: non-membres de la famille: hommes (Residents: non members of the family: male)
    Column 15. Résidents: non-membres de la famille: femmes (Residents: non members of the family: female)
    Column 16. Membres de la famille absents: hommes (Absent members of the family: male)
    Column 17. Membres de la famille absents: femmes (Absent members of the family: female)
    Column 18. Sourds et muets: hommes (Deaf and dumb: male)
    Column 19. Sourds et muets: femmes (Deaf and dumb: female)
    Column 20. Aveugles: hommes (Blind: male)
    Column 21. Aveugles: femmes (Blind: female)
    Column 22. Aliénés: hommes (Lunatics: male)
    Column 23. Aliénés: femmes (Lunatics: female)
    Column 24. Allant à l'école: hommes (Students: male)
    Column 25. Allant à l'école: femmes (Students: female)
    Column 26. Naissances durant l'année 1851: hommes (Births during the year 1851: male)
    Column 27. Naissances durant l'année 1851: femmes (Births during the year 1851: female)
    Column 28. Nombre de décès durant l'année 1851: hommes (Number of deaths during the year 1851: male)
    Column 29. Nombre de décès durant l'année 1851: femmes (Number of deaths during the year 1851: female)
    Column 30. Décès durant l'année 1851: âge et cause des décès (Deaths during the year 1851: age and cause of death)
    Column 31. Maisons: brique, pierre, charpente, pièces ou autre genre de construction (Houses: brick, stone, frame, log or other types of construction)
    Column 32. Maisons: nombre d'étages (Houses: number of stories)
    Column 33. Maisons: Nombre de familles dans la maison (Houses: number of families in the house)
    Column 34. Maisons non habitées (Houses: vacant)
    Column 35. Maisons en construction (Houses: under construction)
    Column 36. Ateliers, magasins, auberges, tavernes, etc. (Shops, stores, inns, taverns, etc.)
    Column 37. Édifices publics (Public buildings)
    Column 38. Édifices consacrés au culte (Places of worship)
    Column 39. Renseignements relatifs aux moulins, manufactures, etc. mise de capital, force motrice, production, etc. (Information as to mills, factories, etc., investment, power,
    roduction, etc.)
    Column 40. Nombre de personnes qui y sont généralement employées (Number of persons usually employed therein)
    Column 41. Observations générales par le recenseur (General remarks of the enumerator)

  • A pre-printed form was used with headings written only in French. For your convenience, those headings have been translated.
    Note: Different units of measure were used in Canada East: the minot, which is similar in size to a bushel, and the arpent, which is approximately 0.84 of an acre.
    Column 1. Nom de l'occupant (Name of occupant)
    Column 2. Rang ou concession (Range or concession)
    Column 3. Lot entier ou partie du lot (Lot or part of lot)
    Column 4. Nombre d'arpents de terre: occupés par chaque personne ou famille (Number of arpents of land: held by each person or family)
    Column 5. Nombre d'arpents de terre: en culture (Number of arpents of land: under cultivation)
    Column 6. Nombre d'arpents de terre: ayant produit une récolte en 1851 (Number of arpents of land: having produced a harvest in 1851)
    Column 7. Nombre d'arpents de terre: en pâturage en 1851 (Number of arpents of land: under pasture in 1851)
    Column 8. Nombre d'arpents de terre: jardins et vergers (Number of arpents of land: gardens and orchards)
    Column 9. Nombre d'arpents de terre: en bois debout ou incultes (Number of arpents of land: wooded or wild)
    Column 10. Blé: arpents (Wheat: arpents)
    Column 11. Blé: produit en minots (Wheat: bushels)
    Column 12. Orge: arpents (Barley: arpents)
    Column 13. Orge: produit en minots (Barley: bushels)
    Column 14. Seigle: arpents (Rye: arpents)
    Column 15. Seigle: produit en minots (Rye: bushels)
    Column 16. Pois: arpents (Peas: arpents)
    Column 17. Pois: produit en minots (Peas: bushels)
    Column 18. Avoine: arpents (Oats: arpents)
    Column 19. Avoine: produit en boisseaux (Oats: bushels)
    Column 20. Blé sarrasin: arpents (Buckwheat: arpents)
    Column 21. Blé sarrasin: produit en minots (Buckwheat: bushels)
    Column 22. Blé d'Inde: arpents (Corn: arpents)
    Column 23. Blé d'Inde: produit en minots (Corn: bushels)
    Column 24. Patates: arpents(Potatoes: arpents)
    Column 25. Patates: produit en minots (Potatoes: bushels)
    Column 26. Navets: arpents (Turnips: arpents)
    Column 27. Navets: produit en minots (Turnips: bushels)
    Column 28. Trèfle, mil et autres fourrages, minots (Clover, millet and forage: bushels)
    Column 29. Carottes: minots (Carrots: bushels)
    Column 30. Mangel wurtzel: minots (Beets: bushels)
    Column 31. Fèvres: minots (Beans: bushels)
    Column 32. Houblons: lbs (Hops: pounds)
    Column 33. Foin: bottes ou tonnes (Hay: bales or tons)
    Column 34. Lin ou chanvre: lbs. (Flax or hemp: pounds)
    Column 35. Tabac: lbs (Tabacco: pounds)
    Column 36. Laine: lbs (Wool: pounds)
    Column 37. Colonne vide (Empty column)
    Column 38. Colonne vide (Empty column)
    Column 39. Colonne vide (Empty column)
    Column 40. Sucre d'érable: lbs (Maple sugar: pounds)
    Column 41. Cidre: gallons (Cider: gallons)
    Column 42. Étoffe foulée: verges (Fulled cloth: yards)
    Column 43. Toile: verges (Canvas: yards)
    Column 44. Flanelle: verges (Flannel: yards)
    Column 45. Taureaux, bœufs et bouvillons (Bulls, oxen and steer)
    Column 46. Vaches laitières (Dairy cows)
    Column 47. Veaux et génisses (Cows and heifers)
    Column 48. Chevaux de tous âges (Horses of all ages)
    Column 49. Moutons (Sheep)
    Column 50. Cochons (Pigs)
    Column 51. Beurre: livres (Butter: pounds)
    Column 52. Fromage: livres(Cheese: pounds)
    Column 53. Bœuf: barils ou quint (Beef: barrels or hundredweights)
    Column 54. Lard: barils ou quint (Bacon: barrels or hundredweights)
    Column 55. Quantité de poisson fumé (préparé) (Quantity of smoked fish)
    Column 56. Observations (Remarks)

  • Column 1. Dwelling
    Column 2. Name
    Column 3. Sex
    Column 4. Relationship
    Column 5. Age
    Column 6. Race
    Column 7. Rank or occupation
    Column 8. Date of entering the colony
    Column 9. Sick or infirm
    Column 10. Remarks

    New Brunswick – Schedule no. 2 – Parish information (no names of individuals)

    Column 1. Inhabited houses
    Column 2. By how many families inhabited
    Column 3. Houses now building
    Column 4. Uninhabited houses
    Column 5. Stores, barns and outhouses
    Column 6. No. births preceding year
    Column 7. No. deaths preceding year
    Column 8. No. children attending grammar schools
    Column 9. No. children attending parish schools
    Column 10. Estimated quantity of cleared land
    Column 11. Tons of hay cut
    Column 12. Bushels of wheat raised
    Column 13. Bushels of barley raised
    Column 14. Bushels of oats raised
    Column 15. Bushels of buckwheat raised
    Column 16. Bushels of Indian corn raised
    Column 17. Bushels of peas and beans raised
    Column 18. Bushels of turnips raised
    Column 19. Bushels of potatoes raised
    Column 20. Bushels of other roots raised
    Column 21. Number of neat cattle
    Column 22. Number of cows, how many milked
    Column 23. Quantity of butter
    Column 24. Number of horses
    Column 25. Number of sheep
    Column 26. Number of swine
    Column 27. No. of churches and places of worship
    Column 28. Number of schools
    Column 29. No. of saw mills, and hands employed
    Column 30. No. of grist mills, and hands employed
    Column 31. No. of tanneries, and hands employed
    Column 32. No. of foundries, and hands employed
    Column 33. Number of weaving and carding establishments and hands employed
    Column 34. No. of hand looms
    Column 35. Number of yards of woolen cloth manufactured
    Column 36. No. of factories, other than the above, and hands employed
    Column 37. Value of boots and shoes manufactured
    Column 38. Value of leather manufactured
    Column 39. Value of candles manufactured
    Column 40. Value of wooden ware manufactured, other than cabinet makers
    Column 41. Value of soap manufactured
    Column 42. Value of chairs and cabinet ware manufactured
    Column 43. Value of fish caught, and quantities
    Column 44. Value of hats manufactured
    Column 45. Value of iron castings manufactured
    Column 46. Quantity of coal raised
    Column 47. Quantity of iron smelted
    Column 48. Number of breweries
    Column 49. No. of gallons of malt liquor manufactured
    Column 50. Casks of lime burnt
    Column 51. No. of grindstones
    Column 52. Tons gypsum quarried
    Column 53. Quantity of maple sugar manufactured​

  • Column 1. Heads of families
    Column 2. Buildings: no. of inhabited houses
    Column 3. Buildings: by how many families inhabited
    Column 4. Buildings: no. of houses now building
    Column 5. Buildings: no. of uninhabited houses
    Column 6. Buildings: no. of stores, barns and outhouses
    Column 7. Inhabitants of various ages: no. under 10 years of age: males
    Column 8. Inhabitants of various ages: no. under 10 years of age: females
    Column 9. Inhabitants of various ages: from 10 to 20 years of age: males
    Column 10. Inhabitants of various ages: from 10 to 20 years of age: females
    Column 11. Inhabitants of various ages: from 20 to 30 years of age: males
    Column 12. Inhabitants of various ages: from 20 to 30 years of age: females
    Column 13. Inhabitants of various ages: from 30 to 40 years of age: males
    Column 14. Inhabitants of various ages: from 30 to 40 years of age: females
    Column 15. Inhabitants of various ages: from 40 to 50 years of age: males
    Column 16. Inhabitants of various ages: from 40 to 50 years of age: females
    Column 17. Inhabitants of various ages: above 50 years of age: males
    Column 18. Inhabitants of various ages: above 50 years of age: females
    Column 19. Inhabitants of various ages: no. of married persons of both sexes
    Column 20. Inhabitants of various ages: no. of widowers
    Column 21. Inhabitants of various ages: no. of widows
    Column 22. Inhabitants of various ages: no. of rate payers
    Column 23. Inhabitants of various ages: no. of paupers
    Column 24. Deaf and dumb: males
    Column 25. Deaf and dumb: females
    Column 26. Blind: males
    Column 27. Blind: females
    Column 28. Lunatics: males
    Column 29. Lunatics: females
    Column 30. Idiots: males
    Column 31. Idiots: females
    Column 32. Indians: males, including children
    Column 33. Indians: females, including children
    Column 34. Colored persons: males, including children
    Column 35. Colored persons: females, including children
    Column 36. Assessments: amount of assessment for county rates
    Column 37. Assessments: amount of assessment for poor rates
    Column 38. Assessments: highest rate for poor and county
    Column 39. Assessments: lowest rate for poor and county
    Column 40. Value of property: assessed value of real estate
    Column 41. Value of property: probable value of real estate
    Column 42. Value of property: assessed value of personal estate
    Column 43. Births, deaths, and marriages: no. of births the preceding year
    Column 44. Births, deaths, and marriages: no. of deaths the preceding year
    Column 45. Births, deaths, and marriages: no. of marriages the preceding year
    Column 46. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of clergymen or ministers
    Column 47. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of doctors
    Column 48. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of farmers
    Column 49. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of mechanics
    Column 50. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of merchants and traders
    Column 51. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of persons engaged in the fisheries
    Column 52. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of seamen registered
    Column 53. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of persons employed at sea
    Column 54. Nos. engaged in various occupations: no. of persons engaged in lumbering
    Column 55. Places of worship: no. of churches and places of worship
    Column 56. Places of worship: denomination
    Column 57. Improved land: no. of acres of dyke land
    Column 58. Improved land: average value
    Column 59. Improved land: no. of acres of other than improved land
    Column 60. Schools and pupils: no. of schools in district
    Column 61. Schools and pupils: no. of children attending schools
    Column 62. Nos. of various religious denominations: Church of England
    Column 63. Nos. of various religious denominations: Catholics
    Column 64. Nos. of various religious denominations: Kirk of Scotland
    Column 65. Nos. of various religious denominations: Free Church
    Column 66. Nos. of various religious denominations: Presbyterian Church of N.S.
    Column 67. Nos. of various religious denominations: Baptists
    Column 68. Nos. of various religious denominations: Methodists
    Column 69. Nos. of various religious denominations: Congregationalists
    Column 70. Nos. of various religious denominations: Universalists
    Column 71. Nos. of various religious denominations: Lutherans
    Column 72. Nos. of various religious denominations: Sandemanians
    Column 73. Nos. of various religious denominations: Quakers
    Column 74. Nos. of various religious denominations: other denominations
    Column 75. Agricultural: no. of tons of hay cut
    Column 76. Agricultural: no. of bushels of wheat raised
    Column 77. Agricultural: no. of bushels of barley raised
    Column 78. Agricultural: no. of bushels of rye raised
    Column 79. Agricultural: no. of bushels of oats raised
    Column 80. Agricultural: no. of bushels of buckwheat raised
    Column 81. Agricultural: no. of bushels of Indian corn raised
    Column 82. Agricultural: no. of bushels of peas and beans raised
    Column 83. Agricultural: quantity of millet and forage
    Column 84. Produce: no. of bushels of potatoes raised
    Column 85. Produce: no. of bushels of turnips raised
    Column 86. Produce: no. of bushels of other root crops raised
    Column 87. Agricultural stock: no. of neat cattle
    Column 88. Agricultural stock: no. of milk cows
    Column 89. Agricultural stock: no. of horses
    Column 90. Agricultural stock: no. of sheep
    Column 91. Agricultural stock: no. of swine
    Column 92. Fisheries: no. of vessels engaged in the fisheries
    Column 93. Fisheries: no. of men on board
    Column 94. Fisheries: amount of tonnage engaged in the fisheries
    Column 95. Fisheries: no. of boats engaged in the fisheries
    Column 96. Fisheries: no. of men on board
    Column 97. Fisheries: no. of nets and seines
    Column 98. Fisheries: quantity of dry fish cured
    Column 99. Fisheries: quantity of salmon caught and cured
    Column 100. Fisheries: quantity of shad caught and cured
    Column 101. Fisheries: quantity of smoked herrings caught and cured
    Column 102. Fisheries: quantity of mackerel caught and cured
    Column 103. Fisheries: quantity of herrings caught and cured
    Column 104. Fisheries: quantity of alewives caught and cured
    Column 105. Fisheries: value
    Column 106. Fisheries: quantity of fish oil
    Column 107. Fisheries: value
    Column 108. Mills and factories: no. of saw mills
    Column 109. Mills and factories: value
    Column 110. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 111. Mills and factories: no. of grist mills
    Column 112. Mills and factories: value
    Column 113. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 114. Mills and factories: no. of tanneries
    Column 115. Mills and factories: value
    Column 116. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 117. Mills and factories: no. of foundries
    Column 118. Mills and factories: value
    Column 119. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 120. Mills and factories: no. of weaving and carding establishments
    Column 121. Mills and factories: value
    Column 122. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 123. Mills and factories: no. of breweries and distilleries
    Column 124. Mills and factories: value
    Column 125. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 126. Mills and factories: no. of hand looms
    Column 127. Mills and factories: value
    Column 128. Mills and factories: no. of other factories
    Column 129. Mills and factories: value
    Column 130. Mills and factories: no. of hands employed
    Column 131. Mills and factories: no. of steam mills or factories
    Column 132. Articles manufactured: no. of yards of fulled cloth manufactured last year
    Column 133. Articles manufactured: no. of yards of cloth not fulled
    Column 134. Articles manufactured: no. of yards of flannel
    Column 135. Articles manufactured: value of boots and shoes manufactured
    Column 136. Articles manufactured: value of leather manufactured
    Column 137. Articles manufactured: value of candles manufactured
    Column 138. Articles manufactured: value of soap manufactured
    Column 139. Articles manufactured: value of agricultural implements manufactured
    Column 140. Articles manufactured: value of chairs and cabinet ware manufactured
    Column 141. Articles manufactured: value of carriages manufactured
    Column 142. Articles manufactured: value of other wooden ware manufactured
    Column 143. Articles manufactured: value of iron castings manufactured
    Column 144. Articles manufactured: quantity of coal raised
    Column 145. Articles manufactured: quantity of iron smelted
    Column 146. Articles manufactured: value

Common Abbreviations

Gender

  • M (Male)
  • F (Female)

Marital Status

  • M (Married)
  • S (Single)
  • W (Widow)
  • Wr (Widower)

Provinces

Religion

  • B.C. (Bible Christian)
  • C. (of) E. (Church of England)
  • C. (of) S. (Church of Scotland)
  • E.M.C. (Episcopal Methodist Church)
  • F.C. (Free Church – Presbyterian)
  • M.E.C. (Methodist Episcopal Church)
  • P.C.L.P. (Presbyterian-Canada and Lower Provinces)
  • P.F.C. (Presbyterian Free Church)
  • R.C. (Roman Catholic)
  • R.P. (Reformed Presbyterian)
  • U.P. (United Presbyterian)
  • W.M. (Wesleyan Methodist)

Weights and Measures

  • A (Acres)
  • B wheat (Buckwheat)
  • Bsh. (Bushels)
  • Galls. (Gallons)
  • Cwts./ Quint (Hundredweight)
  • Lbs. (Pounds)
  • Yds. (Yards)

Schedules

Personal Census

The enumeration data were collected using documents known as schedules. Each province submitted unique schedules. Questions were asked either in French or in English in Canada East depending on the language spoken by the enumerator.

Agricultural Census

For Canada East and Canada West, agricultural returns for 1851 provide information such as lot and concession number, acreage, livestock and agricultural products. The agricultural returns are listed by the name of the head-of-household. For each sub-district (e.g. township), the agricultural returns are listed immediately after the personal returns.

The names of individuals on agricultural returns were not indexed in this database.  The PDF files listed below provides you a direct access to digitized images of the Agricultural Returns for Canada East and Canada West, sorted by district, sub district and then division.

Instructions to Enumerators

Instructions to enumerators were given on how to collect the names and other information in 1851 in Nova Scotia. Those instructions can be found in "Appendix 43 [Earl Grey's Instructions]." Journal of the House of Assembly of the Province of Nova Scotia, Halifax, NS, Richard Nugent, 1851, p. 349–350.
Statistical information can be found in the following reports:

Issues about this Census and this Database

This database only includes the census returns held by Library and Archives Canada.  The Provincial Archives of New Brunswick hold the census returns for other places; however they are not digitized, not available online and not included in this database.  Library and Archives Canada holds microfilmed copy of these return that can be viewed onsite at 395 Wellington Street, Ottawa. Consult the list of 1851 Census Districts and Sub-districts to learn the extent of our collection. 

Some census records have not survived. Consult the list of 1851 Census Districts and Sub-districts to find out what sub-districts are missing.

The 1851 census has also been indexed on our partners’ websites:

An index can also be found on Automated Genealogy website where you can browse the indexed surnames in each district and sub-district. 

The 1851 Census consists of multiple pages depending on the form that was used to collect the information. The first page is on the digitized image link to an entry in the database for an individual. 

To view all columns associated to an individual, you will need to view multiple images.

To view, increase by one the last digit of the url address of an image that appears in the navigation box of your browser. In the example below the 7 becomes an 8.

http://data2.collectionscanada.gc.ca/e/e094/e002325107.jpg
 
http://data2.collectionscanada.gc.ca/e/e094/e002325108.jpg

Electoral Maps

No electoral maps were created for this census. However, you may consult the Map of Canada East and West (MIKAN 3694915) created in 1842.

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