Rare Immigration Records Now Available on Microfilm
Feb. 8, 2001

Posted on behalf of the Archives of Ontario by Fawne Stratford-Devai:

* Rare Immigration Records Now Available on Microfilm *

The Archives of Ontario is pleased to announce the availability of Rare
Immigration Records.

About the Records:
Thanks to financial support from the Friends of the Archives of Ontario, the
Archives has acquired a set of highly significant Canadian immigration
records from Columbia University. While at Columbia, they were known as the
Toronto Emigration Office Records, or more informally as the Hawke Papers.
These records, which date from 1831-1892, were mainly compiled by Anthony
Bowden Hawke and his successor J. A. Donaldson. Hawke was the first
specialized emigrant agent assigned to assist immigrants in settling Upper
Canada (which became Canada West, and then Ontario). He served as Chief
Emigrant Agent for a number of years.

This important collection is now part of the Archives' larger collection of
Provincial Immigration Records (RG 11). It includes official correspondence
and records which document assistance provided to immigrants in the form of
transportation, food, and shelter. Of particular note are records of
assistance provided to widows, orphans, and others who fled to Canada during
the difficult Irish famine time period. Earliest in date are financial
records containing accounts of A.B. Hawke, Peter Robinson, Alexander
McDonell and others.

While the records originate mainly from the Toronto and Kingston emigrant
offices, records of arrivals and destinations pertaining to other locations
are also included. Some registers document the arrival of young children,
including "Barnardo's Boys", who were among the more than 100,000 British
Home Children sent to Canada between 1870 and 1940.

These papers will be of immense value to genealogists and scholars studying
immigration patterns and conditions of life in nineteenth-century Ontario.

As of Thursday, February 1, 2001 microfilm of these important records will
be available to the public in one of two ways:

(1) In person, in the Main Reading room of the Archives of Ontario (77
Grenville Street, Toronto, Ontario) on self service microfilm. Information
about the opening times of the main reading room are available on the
Archives of Ontario Web page at the following link -

(2) On interloan from the Archives of Ontario to your local library. To find
out more about the Archives of Ontario Interloan program and to determine
what is available for loan please see the online Interloan catalogue at the
following Archives of Ontario web page:
http://www.archives.gov.on.ca/english/interloan/index.html or the separate
page for the Immigration records at:

For more information about the records and to see samples of original pages,
visit the Archives' website at:

Important Note:
Microfilm copies of the records may be accessed using one of the two methods
described above.
E-mail Al Lewis Back to Bytown or Bust - History and Genealogy in the Ottawa area