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Genealogy and Family History   Tags: family history, genealogy, history  

Explore your roots at VPL and beyond: resources and services for genealogists
Last Updated: Jul 18, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Welcome to Genealogy and Family History

Group portrait in front of a building, VPL #19539, 19--, Philip Timms.

Explore your roots at VPL and beyond:
resources and services for genealogists

Genealogical research is one of the most popular and fastest growing hobbies in North America. This guide will assist the first time and advanced family history researcher with the ever-growing amount of resources available in print and online.


Genealogy and Family History Buzz

Global RootsTech Conference Announces Free Online
Broadcast Schedule

Posted February 2, 2014

SALT LAKE CITY (January 29, 2014) — RootsTech, the world’s largest family history and technology conference held in Salt Lake City, Utah, February 6-8, 2014, announced today that 15 of its popular sessions will be broadcast live and complimentary over the Internet. The live broadcasts will give those unable to attend in-person worldwide a sample of this year’s conference content. Interested viewers can watch the live presentations at The fourth-year conference has attracted over 10,000 registered attendees in-person, and leaders expect over 20,000 additional viewers online.

To learn more, please see the FamilySearch Blog.

Library and Archives Canada to Digitize 640,000 First World War
Service Files

Posted January 30, 2014

Ottawa (January 27, 2014)
As part of the centennial commemoration of the First World War, Library and Archives Canada (LAC) will digitize 640,000 personnel service files of the First World War’s Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) members.

As part of the First World War commemorations, Canadians will be able to research high-quality digital copies of all service files, anytime and anywhere, by 2015. The newly digitized files will complement the approximately 13,500 service files and the more than 620,000 attestation papers already available on LAC’s website.

Canadians will be able to consult the newly digitized service files in the existing database, Soldiers of the First World War – CEF, on LAC’s website as they become available. The first series of files is expected to be added as of Summer 2014. After digitization, the originals will be permanently stored thus ensuring their preservation.

To learn more, please see the Library and Archives Canada News.

Remembering The Great War - 1914-1918

Posted November 19, 2013

With the 100th anniversary of World War I in 2014, here are two websites which focus on the Great War and Canada’s participation in it.

The University of Victoria presents a new site A City Goes to War featuring the roles various Canadian cities played during the Great War 1914-1918. The City of Victoria is used as a model, with other interested communities invited to participate. Features include a diverse document archive, with images of war diaries, maps, correspondence, and artifacts as well as documents pertaining to topics such as gender and race during the war. Under "Records of Service" users can search for Canadian soldiers through various filters, including region and country of birth, religion, and occupation. For interested teachers and educators, there is also a section connecting the Great War to the high school curriculum, which includes a fun sample assignment for students.

The second is the Canadian Great War Project, a work-in-progress site whose goals are to identify every Canadian man and woman that served during the war and to promote interest in Canada’s participation in the Great War. Along with military records, such as attestation papers, the site features war diaries, statistics on the war, books and media, memorials, rolls and awards, images, letters and news clippings. Launches Only-Known Collection of Early 19th Century Passenger Lists

Posted October 1, 2013

TORONTO (Sept. 25, 2013)–, Canada’s largest family history website, announced today the launch of almost 200,000 passenger records dating from 1819 to 1836, documenting passengers travelling between Quebec City and Montreal on the ships of the St. Lawrence Steamboat Company.

The history of the St. Lawrence Steamboat Company is an important part of Canada’s history. Following the successful launch of his brewing company in the 1780s, John Molson and his sons expanded into the shipping industry by creating the St. Lawrence Steamboat Company. The vessels transported passengers and freight along the St. Lawrence River between Montreal and Quebec City.

To learn more, please see the press release. Search Ancestry Library Edition for free at any VPL branch location.

For more Genealogy and Family History Buzz, please visit the Archives.


Upcoming VPL Events of Interest to Genealogists

The Vancouver Public Library hosts free workshops on topics of genealogical interest. Programs are mainly held at the Central Library. Some require registration and others are drop-in. For more information on upcoming events at the library, please visit the online Events & Courses calendar or call 604.331.3603.


New Titles at VPL

Here is a select list of genealogy-related titles recently added to the library collection. You can also view the full list via the library's catalogue.

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Stay up-to-date with new developments in the rapidly changing world of genealogy with the help of our semi-annual Genealogical Resources eNewsletter.


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