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If your ancestors immigrated to Canada from Europe, England, Ireland, Scotland, Germany or other countries that required a journey across the ocean, you will be looking for ships passenger lists.

Before 1865 Ships Passenger lists on Ships Sailing to Ports in Canada did not have to be archived. It is a challenging time period to find passenger lists in!

For Canadian Ships Passenger Lists before 1865 there are alternate records. There are records of shipping agents (such as J J Cooke), emigrant agent records in Montreal Quebec and Kingston Ontario, Immigration Schemes such as Petworth Immigrants and more.

For Canadian Ships Passenger Lists after 1865 you can search online or order microfilm.

See Filling in the Gaps - a 2-column chart with links to all online ships passenger lists for Canada

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I just found out my ancestors from my mothers side came to Canada as part of the Rutherglen Union Emigration Soceity on the ship "Commerce" in 1821. Records show they left from LKS (Lanark) and give the date 11 May, 1821, which probably
refers to the date they landed in Quebec. My ancestor is John Paul, who came with his wife and six children to Dalhousie Twp. Lanark county, Ontario. I am trying to find out his wife's name, and the names of the six children. One of the boys
was named James, and he married in Ontario, and had two sons, John and Robert. Are there any records of the ship, or of the Rutherglen society.
@Raymond - When was John Paul born - even an approximate date of birth is helpful. Was he born in England? Ireland? Scotland? I have some data which may be your family but need a few details from you first!
My John Paul was born in Scotland. We have him coming on the ship Commerce in 1921. We don't know what his date of birth is, but by trying to work it backwards, we know his son James was born in 1808. So we were guessing that it could be as late as 1780, or earlier if he married later in life. They had six children , a boy and three girls over the age of 12, and a boy and girl under 12 when they came in 1921.
We understand that they settled on lot 12, con. 8 Dalhousie Twp. I have the family in the 1861, 1871 1881 and 1891 census. I will check out the 1951 census now and see what I can find. Ray
Hi Ray - then the family I found is yours. I listed them here yesterday but you didn't comment on them. Your John was still alive at 96 years of age in 1851. Wow! Since you have a lot location you can also check Abstract Indexes to Deeds to learn who he bought it from and who he sold or gave it to. Sometimes wills are filed there too.

Land records are very useful. Originally all land in
Ontario belonged to the Crown. Although there were small
areas of settlement in 1763 after the British took over,
major settlement of Upper Canada began in 1783 and utilized
Crown Grants.

Most settlers bought land soon after arrival, although of
course there were exceptions to this - some lived with
family previously settled, others had no urgent need for
land (a blacksmith didn't need land as urgently as a farmer
for example)

BRIEFLY --

CLRI (aka Ontario Land Record Index) summarizes land grants
from sales of Crown Land, from Canada Company sales or
leases and from Peter Robinson settlers' grants. (more at
http://olivetreegenealogy.com/can/ont/clri.shtml )

UCLP are the actual Petitions for land which were submitted
in Upper Canada (Ontario) . They frequently contain
information about the petitioner and his or her family.
Loyalists and discharged soldiers often mentioned the
regiment in which they served. (more at
http://olivetreegenealogy.com/can/ont/uclp.shtml )

Land Books are basically a summary of land grants. They
rarely contain more info than name, date and location.
Sometimes they have little gems in the comment section. But
they're helpful because if you can't find a petition in the
UCLP it may be in the Land Book so at least you have some
record of the event. (more at
http://olivetreegenealogy.com/can/ont/land.shtml )

Township Papers are a miscellaneous group of land-related
records have been arranged by township name, then by
concession and lot or by town name and lot number. They're a
mixed bag - they may contain correspondence re land, some
petitions, copies of orders-in-council, etc (more at
http://olivetreegenealogy.com/can/ont/land.shtml )
This could be my great great great grandfather. We have the family in the later census. Some of the names shown here we recognize, as his son James had two boys we know of, John, who is listed as
age 25 in the 1861 census, and Robert, age 22 in the same census. The others could be the rest of James family. That would mean that John Paul, age 96 left Scotland when he was 66.
OGS has a CD out called "Dictionary of Scottish Emigrants to Canada before Confederation Volumes 1 to 4 by Donsald Whyte. We found the family on that CD, and some helpful information.
There is a Rutherglen on the map just south and east of Glasgow. He must have come from that region, although they give his departure from LKS which I find is Lanark.
If this is the family, then I would know James's wife's name. In the 1861 census, she is listed as Mrs. Paul, which isn't much help.
Thanks for your import, it is helpful. Ray
Have you seen the 1851 census for Canada on automatedgenealogy.com? It shows a PAUL family in Dalhousie, Lanark Co.

James E, farmer, b Scotland, 46
Helen b Scotland 37
john b Scotland, farmer 96 widower (is this your John Paul??)
John, labourer b Canada 17
Robert b Canada 13
William b Can. 11
James b Can 8
Elizabeth b Can. 6
George b Can 4
David b Can 2
Andrew b Can 1

There are other census records available online, also BDM records

Hi Everyone, I've looked every where trying to find out where or when my 5th Great Grandfather James F.Mathieson came to Canada , then immigrated to the United States in 1863, with his wife Elizabeth Murphy & son John Mathieson,, I've had more problems trying to find info of this family member.....any advice would be appreciated..Thanks in advance..Rick

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