War of 1812

The Records

The War of 1812 took place from June 18, 1812 to February 16, 1815. During this conflict between the United States and Great Britain, many military events occurred on Canadian soil. To learn more about the War of 1812, we invite you to visit the following websites:

There are no service files for the Canadian militia; however, Library and Archives Canada (LAC) holds a unique and vast collection of records about the Canadian men and women who were involved in the War of 1812. Their names can be found on muster rolls, pay lists, claims, certificates of service, land grants, and medal registers. Many of these documents are only available in the original format and have not been microfilmed or digitized.

This database does not include the name of every person who served during the war, only those whose names appear in the records that have been indexed for this project from the following fonds. The list indicates the archival reference, volume number(s) and the microfilm reel number, if applicable. Note that RG9 references are from records of the Department of Militia and Defence.

Fond

Reference

​2nd Regiment Leeds Militia

​MG24 G4, vol. 1

2nd Regiment, Lincoln Militia Muster Roll MG24 G14, vol. 1
Adjutant-General's Office, Lower Canada fonds: List of veterans claiming land grants RG9 IA4, vol. 2
Adjutant-General's Office, Lower Canada fonds: Pension and Gratuities Lower Canada 1817–1833; Alphabetical list of certain officers and militiamen who have applied for a pension or other reward, and whose names occur in certain documents landed to the Office for Militia Claims; Pension and Gratuities Lower Canada Receipts 1829–1846 RG9 IA4, vol. 1
Adjutant-General's Office, Lower Canada fonds: Pensions and land grants for veterans of the War of 1812 RG9 IA4, vol. 9
Adjutant-General's Office, Lower Canada fonds: Pensions and land grants for veterans of the War of 1812 RG9 IA4, vols. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Certificates of Service during the War of 1812 RG9 IB4, vols. 18, 19 , 29, 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Disability Pension Lists RG9 IB4, vols. 4 and 5
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Disability pension petitions and correspondence RG9 IB4, vol. 6
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Lists of War of 1812 veterans not receiving bounty or land grants RG9 IB4, vol. 26
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Lists of War of 1812 veterans eligible for bounty or land grants; Registers of Land Grants, Certificates of the Adjutant-General filed as grants to Militia Officers and Militiamen who served in the Flank Companies and Cavalry during the late war and discharged seamen from the Provincial Navy. RG9 IB4, vols. 27, 28 and 29
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Pay lists, nominal returns and accounts for the Upper Canada Militia during the War of 1812, Colored Corps RG9 1B7, vol. 21, microfilm T-10385
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Pensions and Land Grants Records RG9 IB4, vols. 1, 2 and 3
Adjutant-General's Office, Upper Canada fonds: Receipts for pensions RG9 IB4, vols. 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17
Alexander Hamilton and family fonds MG24 I26, vol. 64
British Military and Naval records: Correspondence of the Military Secretary of the Commander of Forces, War of 1812, Prisoners of War, muster roll and pay list, Colored Corps RG8 1A, vol. 690, microfilm C-3233
Charles Jones fonds MG24 B7, vol. 1
Collection milice de Montréal : Engagements dans les bataillons de milice d'élite et incorporée, 1812–1814 MG24 G13, vol. 1
Department of Finance fonds: Board of Claims for War of 1812 losses RG19 E5a, vols. 3740 to 3759
Department of Indian and Northern Affairs fonds: General Operational Records, War of 1812 Medals RG10 A5d, vol. 264, microfilm C-12650
Duncan Clark fonds MG19 A39, vols. 1, 2 and 3
Dundas Militia Collection MG24 G60, vol. 1
Essex Militia, 3rd Regiment pay list MG24 G47, vol. 1
Executive Council Office of the Province of Upper Canada fonds: Registry Land Certificates, 1821–1834, Upper Canada, Clergy Reserves, Licences of Occupation, 1804–1830 RG1 L7, vol. 26
Executive Council Office of the Province of Upper Canada fonds: Register of Warrants for Military Settlers, War of 1812 Veterans and Other Military Men, 1817–1829 RG1 L7, vol. 11
Executive Council Office of the Province of Upper Canada fonds: Registry Land Certificates, War of 1812 Militia Veterans and Provincial Navy Veterans RG1 L7, vol. 52
Fonds du Bureau de l'adjudant général du Bas-Canada : Rapports de la milice RG9 IA8, vol. 5
Incorporated Battalion of Militia, Canada West Collection, A Return of the Incorporated Battalion of Militia of Upper Canada entitled to land for soldiers during the late War with the United States of America MG24 G37, vol. 1
John D. Servos Collection MG24 G7, vol. 1, files 1 and 2
List of aliens and deserters (Johnstown District), Upper Canada, 1816–1821 MG24 B112, vol. 1
Lukin Homfray Irving fonds MG24 G2, vol. 1
Lundy's Lane, 1814, Return of Killed, Wounded and Missing Militia at Lundy's Lane, 25 July 1814 MG40 C41, vol. 1
Office of the Deputy Adjutant-General, Canada West fonds: Applications for Land Grants for Service in the Militia of Lower Canada during the War of 1812, 1847–1851 RG9 IC5, vol. 35
Office of the Deputy Adjutant-General, Canada West fonds: Upper Canada Petitions for pensions for service during the War of 1812, 1850–1867 RG9 IC5, vols. 3 and 4
Orderly Book of Matthew Bell's Troop of Light Cavalry MG24 G75, vol. 1
Prince Edward Militia MG24 G12, vol. 1
Records of the administration of Cape Breton by Hugh Swayne with a few personal papers, Description and Service Rolls MG24 A5, vol. 2
Statement showing the name, age and residence of militiamen of 1812–15, who have applied to participate in the gratuity voted by Parliament in 1875, with the name of the Corps or Division in which they served Sessional Papers, Third Session of the Third Parliament of the Dominion of Canada
Thomas Coleman fonds, Account Book MG24 G78, vol. 1, file 1
W.S. Falls Collection, Pay Roll of Captain Caldwell's Company MG24 G57, vol. 1
War of 1812 medal registers collection MG24 G8, vol. 1
William Lewis Smith fonds MG24 G74, vol. 1

Over the coming years,  more entries will be added to this database as additional records are identified and indexed.

The Database

This research tool provides access to over 45,000 references to names of people appearing in War of 1812 records held at Library and Archives Canada (LAC).

Staff members had originally created a name card index for some of the records. Information from these cards was input into this database and the records were consulted to verify the names of individuals.

To locate more names within additional records related to the War of 1812, an indexing project took place at LAC involving many staff members. They consulted the original records to gather key information such as name, rank, unit, date, etc. to input into this database.

The content of the database entries reflects the original language used in the documents. This information was not translated.

Important note: Given that some of the original documents are very difficult to read, some information in the database may be incorrect and/or incomplete.

Search Screen

The search screen allows you to search by:

  • Surname
  • Given Name(s)
  • Rank
  • Keyword (such as the name of an unit)

You can enter a surname and/or given name. Note that some entries include only an initial for the given names. Try searching by surname only.

You can also enter any term in the keyword box.

Once you have entered your search terms, click on “Search.” The number of hits found will be shown at the top of the results screen.

How to Interpret the Results

Your search results will be posted as a results summary list from which you will be able to obtain an item description.

Search Results Page

The search results page displays the following fields:

  • Item Number
  • Surname
  • Given Name(s)
  • Rank
  • Unit

Click on the underlined item number of a person to access the Item page, which contains additional information about that person.

Item Page

Depending on the details contained in the actual record, the item page will include some, but not all, of the following fields:

  • Given Name(s)
  • Surname
  • Rank
  • Unit
  • Age
  • Date
  • Period
  • Occupation
  • Ethnic Origin
  • Place of Birth
  • Place of Residence
  • Remarks
  • Record Title
  • Volume
  • Page Number
  • File Number
  • Claim Number
  • Fonds
  • Mikan Number
  • Reference
  • Microfilm

The Mikan number relates to the archival description in Archives Search.

To suggest a correction, click on the “Suggest a Correction” link to access an electronic form.

To return to the Search Results page, click on the Back button of your browser in the upper left corner of your screen.

How to Obtain Copies

  • Microfilms from the War of 1812 Board of Claims for Losses, Department of Finance Fonds (microfilms T-1122 to T-1144) have been digitized and can be viewed online.
  • Microfilms from Record Group 8 “C” Series have been digitized and can be viewed online.
  • Some microfilms with the prefixes “C,” “H” and “T” are available on our partner website, Canadiana’s Héritage Project. Enter the reel number in the search box, e.g. C-12650. If the reel is digitized, click on the reel title to see the images. You can browse the images, but the text is not searchable. Also note that an image or page number is not the same as the archival document page number.
  • Most of the records cited in this database are original documents that are not on microfilm and not digitized. Consult Access the Records for options such as ordering copies or viewing records onsite. Note that requests should include all the details provided in the database entry.

Other Resources

  • War of 1812: Miscellaneous Records
  • Some smaller collections held by Library and Archives Canada are available on microfilm and are digitized. The Help page lists the available records and explains how to browse these microfilm reels.

  • Military Medals, Honours and Awards, 1812–1969
  • This database includes names of War of 1812 medal recipients.

  • British Military and Navy Records (RG 8, C Series)
  • This series includes documents relating to the Canadian militia and the British Forces during the War of 1812. The name/subject card index and the digitized records can be viewed online. The Introduction page provides information about the records and explains step-by-step how to search the index and find the corresponding documents.

    British military and naval records (RG 8, C Series) - Introduction and index

    British military and naval records (RG 8, C Series) – Digitized documents

  • Militia Muster Rolls and Pay Lists
  • These records are the major source for researching a member of the Canadian militia. The Lower Canada and Upper Canada records have been digitized and can be viewed online. They are not indexed by name but are organized by regiment or unit. The Help pages list the contents of each microfilm reel.

  • British Colonial Era
  • This web page provides information about other resources such as published sources and links to other websites.

  • British Forces
  • Records relating to the service of members of the British Forces are in the custody of the National Archives in England. Consult their Research Guide: Military and Maritime.

    Library and Archives Canada holds microfilm copies of some of the War Office records from the National Archives that relate to regiments that served in Canada. These War Office records are described on our British Colonial Era web page

  • Archives Search
  • The records of the Department of Militia and Defence (RG9) include several correspondence series, in which there are some documents relating to individuals who served in the War of 1812. Try a keyword search by entering “RG9” and a surname. You can also search with only a name, to try to find possible references in other collections. A sample keyword search might be “Fortier 1812.” You can also search for records relating to a particular unit or regiment.

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