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Monday, April 27, 2009

Finding Ships Passenger List to Canada Before 1865

Dawn asked
I have been looking for a ships list for my DEARING/DEERING family, who according to the 1901 census for son Edward DEARING, immigrated to Canada , Proton ON in 1851. I have searched the Ships List, Transcribers Guild and various other sites including Olive Tree and cannot find a thing on them. Family do not know what ship they were aboard. Family members were: Father: Edward “Gilbert”, mother: Mary, Children: Mary Ann 1838, Robert 1843 and Edward 1849. The name was originally DEERING but when Edward Gilbert’s brother came to Canada abt 1837, he changed the spelling and it remained for all family members from then on in Canada. Any suggestions of where I might find this info?

Olive Tree Answer: Hello Dawn, You have a challenge ahead of you because ships passenger lists to Canada did not have to be kept before 1865. So finding a passenger list for an ancestor's arrival is extremely difficult and often without success. There are however, alternate (substitute) records where you can hunt. My best advice to you is to go to the page Filling in the Gaps. Look on the left hand side of the double sided chart for the title "Canadian Passenger Lists Before 1865". This is a list of ALL current online projects (with links) which have records of names - either in Emigrant Agent records, or Shipping Company records or steamship travel on the Great Lakes which ferried immigrants from the arrival ports in Canada to their final destination. Good luck!

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