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Genealogy and Family History

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


Group of Chinese men posed in front of Post Office, VPL# 78362, early 1900s, location unknown, Philip Timms.

Interest in genealogy has surged in recent years, but there have been few targeted resources available to help Chinese-Canadians who wish to explore their personal connection to history. The Vancouver Public Library has created a Chinese-Canadian Genealogy research guide to help fill this gap. VPL received partial support from Library and Archives Canada to research this topic .

The Chinese-Canadian Genealogy research guide provides a wide range of resources aimed at Chinese-Canadian genealogists or anyone with an interest in Chinese-Canadian history and culture. Major sections of the research guide include:

  • Basics – an introduction to principles, strategies and tools commonly used by genealogists.
  • Chinese Names – an exploration of the characteristics of Chinese names and their implications for genealogical research.
  • History and Pioneers – an overview of milestones in Chinese-Canadian history, pioneer stories, current heritage projects and more.
  • Family Sources – tips for interviewing family members, sample questions, and information about documenting family heirlooms and treasures.
  • Documents and Records – an overview of sources of family history information, including immigration documents, civil registration records, newspaper announcements, directories, military and cemetery records.
  • Back to China – information on genealogy in China and tips for finding your ancestral home.

Genealogy Help from Guangzhou Library Genealogy Reference Centre

For those seeking genealogical records or information about families within the city of Guangzhou and Guangdong Province you can send your questions via email to Guangzhou Library Genealogy Reference Centre at:                                    

Telephone #: (020) 83839820

While Chinese is the preferred language you can submit questions in either English or Chinese. A representative from the Genealogy Reference Centre will confirm receipt of a query within 24 hours (although please be aware of the time difference). Depending on the volume of questions received, a response or referral may take up to 2 weeks.

When submitting a query, please provide as much information as possible: family names, known locations of residences and any known immigration information. The more detailed the information provided, the better the chances of successfully providing you with the information you seek.

Guangzhou Library Genealogy Reference Centre currently has a total of 8,000 volumes relating to genealogical research within the city of Guangzhou and Guangdong Province. The Genealogy Reference Centre was established with the aim of protecting rare genealogical volumes, preserving genealogical records, promoting the transmission of culture and enriching national culture and national spirit.



電話號碼: (020) 83839820

 家譜查詢中心的主要服務語言為中文,同時他們也接受英文查詢。收到您的查詢要求后, 家譜查詢中心的工作人員會於24小時內進行確認回復(請將廣州與溫哥華時差計算入內)。根據家譜查詢中心所收到的查詢數量的不同, 工作人員將於2周內給您的咨詢予以回復或提供相關參考資料。

有查詢需求的讀者請盡可能提供詳細的信息, 如:所查姓氏,家族所在地以及所知的遷移線索等等。盡可能詳細的信息將更有利於家譜查詢中心的工作人員查找到相應的資料。




Electronic Resources