Canada, Nova Scotia Church Records - FamilySearch Historical Records

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Canada, Nova Scotia Church Records, 1720-2001
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Nova Scotia, Canada
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Flag of Nova Scotia
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Location of Nova Scotia, Canada
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Record Description
Record Type Church Records
Collection years 1720-2001
Languages English, Latin, French
Title in the Language
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Catholic Church and Church of England parishes, Nova Scotia


What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

These church records cover 1720-2001, and dates vary for each parish. These records include parish registers of baptisms, marriages, deaths, a few censuses, and other records for some Church of England in Canada and Catholic parishes from Nova Scotia. Some parish registers are written in French or Latin. Nova Scotia church records are generally found in the individual parishes or congregations or in church-diocesan archive centers. The individual parishes are found in the Nova Scotia Church Records article.

Image Visibility[edit | edit source]

Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images. For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.

To Browse This Collection[edit | edit source]

You can browse through images in this collection using the waypoints on the Collection Browse Page for Canada, Nova Scotia Church Records, 1720-2001.

What Can This Collection Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records:

Baptismal

  • Date and place of baptism
  • Full name of the child
  • Birthdate
  • Some church records record legitimacy of the child
  • Parents' names and their residence
  • Father's occupation

Confirmation

  • Name of child
  • Date of baptism
  • Date of birth
  • Names of parents
  • Place of birth of parents
  • Names of witnesses

Marriage

  • Names of the bride and groom
  • Their places of residence
  • Date and place of marriage
  • Names of witnesses
  • Name of officiator at ceremony

Burial

  • Name of deceased and their residence
  • Age of the deceased
  • Date of burial
  • Name of person performing burial ceremony
  • Sometimes, parents' names if deceased is a child
  • Sometimes, a spouse's name if deceased was married

Collection Content[edit | edit source]

Sample Images[edit | edit source]

Coverage Table[edit | edit source]

Coverage tables for this collection are available in the wiki article Nova Scotia Church Records Coverage Table - FamilySearch Historical Records

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The name of a relative or date of the event

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

View the Images[edit | edit source]

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:

  1. Select County
  2. Select City or Town
  3. Select Denomination and Parish
  4. Select Record Type and Year Range to view the images.

Specific Record Content Notes[edit | edit source]

Cornwallis[edit | edit source]

First Microfilm Reel[edit | edit source]

When searching in the records of Cornwallis Township (an extinct political subdivision of Kings County) in the first microfilm reel, from the Browse Page (see the link under Access the Records above) select the following series of links: Kings ⇒ Cornwallis Square ⇒ Church of England in Canada St John ⇒ Baptisms, marriages, burials 1718-1911. When you have reached the images, the following information (ordered by image number) will help you locate the records you need.

First Group[edit | edit source]

The first group of records seems to be drawn from what is called the Cornwallis Town Book or Records of Cornwallis. These records are not the original manuscript records organized by date. They are typescript extracts of the original records, presumably, presented generally in alphabetical order by surname, with some errors in grouping. For example, a handful of E entries might be found among the F entries. See also the third group for additional civil records covering the same period.

  • Record of Births for the Township of Cornwallis, alphabetical by first letter of surname, E (probably incomplete) through W, 1718-1825 (estimated), Image 2 (typescript page 24) to Image 51 (typescript page 68).
  • Title Page: RECORD OF BIRTHS for the TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS - CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP, Births, 1720-1825, pp. 1-50. Also includes some marriages and deaths. Image 52. [A microfilm copy is mentioned in a gloss.]
  • RECORD OF BIRTHS FOR THE TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS, alphabetical by first letter of surname, B through W, Image 53 (typescript page 1) through Image 103 (typescript page 50). This group of records seems to be a complete re-extraction of the Cornwallis Town Book that includes the first group.
  • Title Page: RECORD OF MARRIAGES for the TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS - CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP, Marriages, 1740-1825, pp. 1-32. Image 104. [A microfilm copy is mentioned in a gloss.]
  • RECORD OF MARRIAGES FOR THE TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS, alphabetical by first letter of surname, B through W, Image 105 (typescript page 1) through Image 139 (typescript page 32). The "A" marriages are on the verso of Image 105.
  • Title Page: RECORD OF MARRIAGES for the TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS - CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP, Marriages, 1740-1867, pp. 1-54. Image 140. This is said to be a copy of the Cornwallis Township Book, Vol. 1, with additional marriages from 1825 to 1867. [A microfilm copy is mentioned in a gloss.]
  • RECORD OF MARRIAGES FOR THE THE TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS, alphabetical by first letter of surname, A through W, Image 141 (typescript page 2) through Image 194 (typescript page 54). A considerable number of out-of-order entries are recorded in images 192 through 194.
Second Group[edit | edit source]

These records are not the original manuscript records. They are typescript extracts of the original records, presumably, generally presented in date order.

  • Title page: RECORD OF MARRIAGES AT CORNWALLIS (St. John's [ms]), HORTON, ETC., by the REV. JOHN WISWALL, RECTOR: CONTINUED BY WM. TWINING, RECTOR from 1789 - CONTINUED BY ROBERT NORRIS, RECTOR from 1806. 1783-1829. CORNWALLIS  & HORTON, St. John's (Anglican) Church, Marriages, 1783-1829, pp. 1-17. Image 195 (typescript page 1).
  • MARRIAGES AT CORNWALLIS, HORTON, ETC., by date, 1783 through 1829, Image 196 (typescript page 2) through Image 214 (typescript page 17).
  • REGISTER OF MARRIAGES IN THE PARISH OF ST. JOHN, CORNWALLIS IN THE COUNTY OF KINGS, Parish of ST. JOHN, MARRIAGES, 1839-1911, pp. 1-100. Images 215 through 316.
  • Title Page: BAPTISMS AND MARRIAGES OF THE METHODIST CHURCH - 1814-1827. CORNWALLIS METHODIST CHURCH. Baptisms, 1814-1827, pp. 1-13, with notes on the records by the ministers. Images 317 and 318.
  • Methodist Church Baptisms 1815-1827. Images 319 through 331.
  • Methodist Church Marriages, 1815-1827, pp. 1-5. Images 332 through 336.
  • Title page: RECORDS OF THE BAPTIST CHURCH OF CORNWALLIS. 1804-1822. Baptist Church Records, 1804-1822, pp. 1-8. Image 337.
  • Baptist Church Marriages, 1804 -1822. Images 338 through 345.
Third Group[edit | edit source]

These records are not the original manuscript records. They are typescript extracts of the original records, presumably, generally presented in date order.

  • Title page: A BOOK OF RECORDS IN WHICH IS RECORDED THE TRANSACTIONS OF PROCEEDINGS OF THE INHABITANTS OF THE TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS. CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP. Town meetings, 1795-1862, pp. 1-42. Image 346. There appear to be gaps of many years in the record.
  • Town Meetings, 1795-1862. Images 347 through 387.
  • List of Heads & Families, 1771-1822. This is a census, in effect, intended to fill gaps in the vital records of the province. Images 388 through 390.
  • TOWN MEETINGS OF THE TOWNSHIP OF CORNWALLIS. 1771-1792. CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP, Town Meetings, 1771-92, pp. 1-3. Images 391-394.
  • A folder of 47 loose documents of births, marriages, and deaths, 1718-1852, arranged alphabetically by name. (See Cornwallis Township Book (Typed), Births, 1801-1826, pp. 1-8.) Images 395 through 421.
  • Title page (cover): CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP BOOK, VOLUME 1 (WITH TABLE OF CONTENTS). Image 422.
  1. Marriages, 1740-1825, pp. 1-97 (Includes some births.) Generally in alphabetical order of surname. Pages 14, 16, 29-30, 34, 58, 60 and 93 are blank. Images 423 through 472.
  2. Births, 1720-1825, pp. 96-201 (Includes some marriages and deaths.) Generally in alphabetical order of surname. Images 473 through 527.
  3. Deaths, 1760-1825, pp. 201-200 (Includes some births. See the listing on the title page.) Generally in alphabetical order of surname. Images 528 through 574.
  4. Township Meetings 1771-1792 (a few only), pp 300-302. Images 575 and 576.
  • Title page: CORNWALLIS TOWNSHIP BOOK, VOLUME 2

Digby[edit | edit source]

When searching for records from Digby, from the Browse Page (see the link under Access the Records above) select the following series of links: Digby ⇒ Digby ⇒ Church of England in Canada Trinity Church ⇒ Baptisms, burials 1807-1838. When you have reached the images, the following information (ordered by image number) will help you locate the records you need.

  • The first block of christening records begins in 1807 with Image 2 and ends in 1813 with Image 17. One may see (through the back of the facing page) that there are earlier records that were not included. Perhaps they are available on microfilm elsewhere.
  • The first block of marriage records appears to start in 1786, beginning with Image 18, and ends in 1834 with Image 85.
  • A second block of christening records starts in 1814 beginning with Image 86 and ends in 1828 with Image 144.
  • A block of burial records starts in 1786 beginning with Image 145 and ends in 1811 with Image 166.
  • An account of the lives of the family of the Reverend Roger Viets is presented in Images 167 and 168.
  • A second block of burial records starts in 1814 beginning with Image 169 and ends in 1839 with Image 188.

Some Digby records are available at the Rootsweb site, here: Digby Trinity Parish.

Granville[edit | edit source]

When searching for records from Granville, you will select the following series of links: Annapolis ⇒ Granville Centre ⇒ Church of England in Canada All Saints ⇒ Baptisms, marriages, burials 1779-1933. When you have reached the images, the following information (ordered by image numbers) will help you locate the records you need.

  • Christening records, 1790 - 1801, Image 1 to Image 7
  • Marriage records, 1790 - 1801, Image 8 to Image 12
  • Christening records, 1829 - 1858, Image 13 to Image 38
  • Burial records, 1828 - 1918, Image 39 to Image 55
  • Marriage records, 1814 - 1882, Image 57 to Image 153
  • List of Town Clerks, Image 154 to Image 155
  • Family registers, marriage records, from 1761 to 1834, Image 156 to Image 229
  • Christening records, family registers, and burial records, from 1830 to 1834, Image 230 to Image 301

Note that the "family registers" may have been included in this collection by mistake, due to a filming error, and may actually belong to Trinity Anglican Church, Digby. This gives the appearance of two events, such as a marriage occurring in Digby and another in Granville, when in fact there was only one couple and one event.

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next[edit | edit source]

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Add any new information to your records
  • If available, check the image for additional information
  • Analyze the entry to see if it provides additional clues to find other records of the person or their family

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Consult the Nova Scotia Record Finder to find other records
  • If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This can help you find possible relatives.
  • Search the records of nearby areas
  • Check for other names. An individual might appear under an unexpected name for a variety of reasons:
    • They might have been listed under a middle name, nickname, or abbreviation of their given name
    • A woman may have returned to her maiden name after the death of her husband

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in Nova Scotia.

Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.
Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.