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Newfoundland and Labrador Census Information
Although census were conducted between 1675 and 1715 they would have no real genealogical value, since most were that of migratory fisherman, both French and English, and it is doubtful that any present day Newfoundlander would be able to trace his ancestry to these. Further, the censuses taken between 1716 and 1835 were generally carried out by a fishing Admiral under instruction from the Colonial Office and contained data related to fishing vessels and fish caught, although they did contain a population count as shown in the chart below.
Census Year Population Count
1716 3,295 1741 6,000 1750 6,900 1763 13,112 1773 11,576 1784 10,701 1790 16,835 1804 20,380 1816 52,672 1823 52,157 1831 75,900
1836 - 1949
The first official census was conducted in 1836 following the passing of an act in the Newfoundland Legislative Assembly that called for Censuses to be every ten years on the first Monday in May, or shortly thereafter. These censuses would be more extensive in content than previously. Along with the names and addresses of individuals, the censuses would also include land under cultivation, the number of houses, as well as the number of cattle, sheep & hogs. The years and population counts for censuses conducted during this period are listed in the chart below.
Census Year Population Count
1836 75,094 1845 96,293 1857 124,288 1869 146,536 1884 197,335 1901 220,984 1911 242,619 1921 263,033 1935 289,588 1945 321,819
1950 - Present
After becoming part of the Canadian federation in 1949, Newfoundland and Labrador censuses were conducted as an integral part of the Canadian census. As a Canadian province, Newfoundland and Labrador's first census was in 1951. Subsequent censuses occurred every 10 years with partial censuses occurring at the mid-points between the complete versions, but may be viewed for statistical data only, as part of Canada, 100 years must pass before the names can be used, so they have little genealogical value.Where are they?
Census returns are maintained by the Newfoundland Department of Social Services and are available up to 1945. All of the early censuses should be available on microfilm, however, only fragments of the 1911 census survive. Microfilm copies are available from a variety of sources;-- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,
If neither of these resources are available to you, check with your local library for their availability through the inter-institutional loan service.Addresses for these institutions will be given at a later point.
Page last updated March 26, 2013 (Craig Peterman)
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