Northwest Territories

The Northwest Territories has been part of Canada since July 15, 1870. These lands were acquired from the Hudson's Bay Company and Great Britain.

Large portions were then sliced off to form the provinces of Manitoba (1870), Saskatchewan (1905) and Alberta (1905), as well as the territories of Yukon (1898) and Nunavut (1999). Other parts of the Northwest Territories were appended to Manitoba (1880, 1912), Ontario (1912) and Quebec (1912).

The first white people arrived in the territories around the end of the eighteenth century as a result of the northward expansion of the fur trade, and trading posts were established in the Mackenzie River Valley in the early-nineteenth century.

Researchers interested in ancestors who lived in the Northwest Territories use the main types of genealogical sources.

Civil Registration (Birth, Death, and Marriage Records)

In the Northwest Territories, incomplete records date from 1925. Requests should be addressed to the:

Health and Social Services: Vital Statistics
Bag #9
Inuvik, NT
X0E 0T0
Toll-free: 1-800-661-0830
Phone: (867) 777-7400
Fax: (867) 777-3197

Criminal Records

Land Records

  • Municipal and Community Affairs' (MACA) Lands Administration Division is responsible for the administration of all Commissioner's lands of the Northwest Territories.

Territorial Websites

Many libraries hold reference books, local histories, family histories and other books on genealogy. Library and Archives Canada allows you to browse lists of Canadian library Web sites and catalogues by province (Archived).


Probate records are in the custody of the:

Supreme Court
PO Box 1320
Yellowknife, NT
X1A 2L9

Some records of the administration of intestate estates are held by the:

Public Trustee
Government of the Northwest Territories
Yellowknife, NT
X0E 1H0

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