Are you researching ancestors who lived in Newfoundland and Labrador? On this page, you will find information about records held at Library and Archives Canada and the provincial archives. There are also links to online resources and to other institutions, societies and government agencies.
Newfoundland and Labrador became a Canadian province on March 31, 1949.
- The first peoples were the Beothuk, who became extinct in 1829. Today there are Inuit, Innu, Mi'kmaq and Southern Inuit peoples.
- In 1610, the first colony was founded by the London and Bristol Company, followed by other small fishing villages.
- In 1662, the French established a colony in Plaisance.
- In 1713, the British gained full control of the colony, but the French retained some fishing rights.
- In 1907, it became the Dominion of Newfoundland.
Civil registration (birth, marriage and death records)
Civil registration is a provincial jurisdiction. In Newfoundland, records date from 1891. Microfilm copies for the following years are available at the provincial archives (The Rooms):
- births (1891 to 1899)
- marriages (1891 to 1922)
- deaths (1891 to 1949)
Learn more about vital statistics and parish records held at
The Rooms: Collections & Research.
Official copies of vital records for any years must be ordered from the
Newfoundland and Labrador Vital Statistics Online Services.
Some records are indexed and digitized on FamilySearch:
Adoption and divorce
Courts and criminal records
Newfoundland and Labrador was divided into districts and municipalities.
The Rooms: Collections & Research holds records of Crown land purchases from 1830 to 1930.
The provincial government maintains the Registry of Crown Titles and the Registry of Deeds. Visit their
Land Registries page to learn more about the records.
Wills and estate records
- Wills and estate records are a provincial jurisdiction.
The Rooms holds a collection of Probated Wills of the Supreme Court – 1825-1900.
- Later wills are held at the Supreme Court of Newfoundland. See
Wills, Estates, and Guardianship.
- Indexes to some of the records are available on the Grand Banks genealogy website. See
Newfoundland Wills Indexes.
Library and Archives Canada information pages and databases
The Sir John Thomas Duckworth collection (MG24-A45) contains material concerning his time as Governor of Newfoundland. The collection includes some documents relating to individuals. The records are indexed in the
General Index. For more information about the collection and to consult the scanned finding aids, see
To find out about other types of records for genealogy research, visit our
Genealogy and Family History pages, including
The provincial archives holds many sources for genealogy research. Consult the following links:
archives in Newfoundland and Labrador.