The Connolly File

The Connolly File is one of 16 tools available to Genealogy Quebec subscribers.
It is an index of Catholic and Protestant baptisms, marriages and burials from Quebec covering a period extending from 1621 to 2015.
In total, the tool contains 6,500,000 baptism, marriage and burial files.

Using the Connolly File

The Connolly File is equipped with a search engine specific to each type of record it contains, namely baptisms, marriages and burials. The search fields differ depending on the type of record searched, but the basic name, surname, date and location fields are always present.


Connolly File baptism search engine

To begin your search, fill one or multiple search fields and press on “Search”, which will prompt a list of results.


Result list produced by a search for “Pierre Loiselle”

The records are presented as files which contain all of the relevant information extracted from the original record.

Automatic search buttons

Every record in the Connolly File is equipped with one or several automatic search buttons. These buttons allow you to automatically trigger searches for various records related to the one you are viewing. In the baptism section, the automatic search button allows you to search for the parents’ marriage record.

In the marriage section, there are 6 different buttons per file. These buttons will trigger automatic searches for the parents, the baptism records or the burial records of the subjects.

Finally, the burial section will let you automatically search for the subject’s own marriage, or that of their parents.

Careful! If an automatic search does not yield any results, do not assume that the desired record does not exist in the Connolly File. For example, it is very possible that an individual’s name may be slightly different from one record to the next, or that the Priest committed a mistake when recording the original event. It is strongly recommended to do a manual search if the automatic search produces no results, and to try multiple combinations of first and last names if the initial searches are unsuccessful.

Tips and best practices

The Connolly File allows searching for many variables, which makes it tempting to fill as many fields as possible when using the tool. However, we recommend that you keep your initial search as vague as possible, and clarify it as needed by adding one piece of information at a time. When the name or surname searched is rare or unusual, it is rarely necessary to add more information to the search.

The more precise a search is, the more likely it is to omit the record you are looking for, as every single field must match.
For example, an initial search could start with the surname and first name of the subject. If the number of results is too high, a variable such as the year of the event or the surname of another individual mentioned in the record can be added. Often, the simple fact of adding a third variable is enough to narrow the search down sufficiently.

As with many of Genealogy Quebec’s tools, you may use the “%” character as a joker to search for a partial name. For example, a search for “Lar%” will include any name beginning in “Lar”, such as Larrivière, Larramée, Larue, etc. This allows you to keep your search more generic and is particularly useful for surnames that tend to have many different spellings.

Finding the original record using the information provided by the Connolly File

You may have noticed that the Connolly File does not provide a link to the original document from which its files have been created. However, as a Genealogy Quebec subscriber, you have access to the entirety of Quebec’s Parish Registry up until 1940 through the Drouin Collection Records.
You can find most of the original documents associated with the Connolly File records via the date and parish name given in each record.

As an example, here is the baptism file of Jean-Louis Girard.

It tells us that Jean-Louis was born in Bagotville on October 10, 1923, and was baptized in the St-Alphonse-de-Liguori parish. To find the original record, we must browse this parish’s register for the year 1923, which we will find in the Drouin Collection Records.

Once in the Drouin Collection Records, you will notice that the various registers are organized in a file tree structure. We will begin by opening the Quebec folder, as the baptism we are interested in was recorded in the province.
Once inside the Quebec folder, we have to find the right parish folder. Some parishes are listed under the name of the city they are located in, while others will be listed under the name of the parish itself. In the case of St-Alphonse-de-Liguori parish, it is listed under Bagotville.

Once inside the correct folder, we must navigate to the right year, which will give us access to all the images associated with that register for that specific year. It is important to know that in general, the images are listed in chronological order.
This means that the first image in the folder will contain the first events recorded in that year, which are usually the ones from January. Similarly, the last few images in the folder will be those from the end of the year.
Since Jean-Louis’s baptism was celebrated in October, it’s likely that his baptism will be found among the last few images. You may have to sift through a few pages before finding the right one, but by starting towards the end, you will save yourself some time.

And with that, we were able to find the original document using the information given to us in the Connolly File record.

Useful links

The Connolly File (subscription required)
The Drouin Collection Records (subscription required)
Subscribing to Genealogy Quebec
What is Genealogy Quebec?
List of the parishes available in the Connolly File (baptism, marriage, burial)

The NBMDS tool

The NBMDS tool contains baptism, marriage and burial files. These files are produced from the original parish records. While the original records aren’t directly linked to the files, you may find the original records in the Drouin Collection Records by using the information given in the file; namely, the parish and the date.

Originally, the tool extended from 1727 to 2011 and covered the Laurentians, the Outaouais and Bas-St-Laurent regions as well as the city of St-Hubert. It now also contains marriage records from Ontario and the United States.

The NBMDS is equipped with a multiple field search engine. As with most of our tools, we recommend that you limit your initial search to only a few parameters; a family name and the year of the event. If this produces too many results to sift through, a first name or a second family name should be added.

On the NBMDS files, you will find buttons that allow for an automatic search for the baptism, marriage or burial of the individuals mentioned in the file. Please note that these buttons are only research shortcuts, not linked data. It is always recommended to do manual searches with the various spellings of the researched name(s) if the automatic search hasn’t produced any results.

You can browse the NBMDS with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec at this address.

Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997

Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 is one of 16 tools available to Genealogy Quebec subscribers.

It is a detailed index of marriage and death forms recorded in Quebec between 1926 and 1997,  all religious denominations included. In total, this collection contains 5 286 169 forms. The original document can be viewed for the marriages.

Marriage form taken from the Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 tool

Using the Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 tool

The Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 tool is equipped with 2 search engines; one for the marriages, and one for the deaths.

To start your search, you must fill one or more search fields and click on the “Search” button, which will produce a list of results related to your query.

List of results produced by a search for Burton as the husband’s surname, and Taylor as the bride’s surname

To view the original form associated with a file, simply click anywhere inside the file. Note that the original document is available for the marriages but not the deaths.

Richard Burton and Liz Taylor’s marriage

Tips and best practices

The Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997’s search engine allows searching for many variables, which makes it tempting to fill as many fields as possible when using the tool. However, we recommend that you keep your initial search as vague as possible, and clarify it as needed by adding one piece of information at a time. When the name or surname searched is rare or unusual, it is rarely necessary to add more information to the search.

The more precise a search is, the more likely it is to omit the record you are looking for, as every single field must match.
For example, an initial search could start with the surname and first name of the subject. If the number of results is too high, a variable such as the year of the event or the surname of another individual mentioned in the record can be added. Often, simply adding a third variable is enough to narrow the search down sufficiently.

Additionally, it is important to note that the forms have changed several times over the decades. Certain fields only existed in one version of the form. As such, it is recommended to stick to the primary search fields (names and dates) unless certain that the form you are looking for contains the field and the information in question.

As with many of Genealogy Quebec’s tools, you may use the “%” character as a joker to search for a partial name. For example, a search for “Lar%” will include any name beginning in “Lar”, such as Larrivière, Larramée, Larue, etc. This allows you to keep your search more generic and is particularly useful for surnames that tend to have many different spellings.

Finding the original church record using the information provided by the Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 tool

Since the Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 forms are based on vital events, there will often exist a parish record associated with the event. It can be interesting to seek out the church record associated with an event, particularly in the case of deaths, as the original form isn’t available in the tool.

As a Genealogy Quebec subscriber, you have access to the entirety of Quebec’s Parish Registry up until 1940 through the Drouin Collection Records. As such, you should be able to find the original church records associated to the forms that predate 1941.

 

Marriages

In the case of the marriages, the parish in which the marriage was recorded is mentioned in the form, which allows us to trace the parish record rather easily.

As an example, we will use the marriage form of Florent Beaudoin and Madeleine Lafond, which we have found using the Marriages 1926-1997 database.

The first step is to make sure the marriage falls within the date range covered by the Drouin Collection Records. Since this marriage was celebrated on the 23rd of February 1935, and so before 1941, we should be able to find the church record associated to it. The form indicates that the parish is “Montréal – N-D-du-Rosaire”.

We will find the original church record by browsing the parish register of Notre-Dame-du-Rosaire for the year 1935 in the Drouin Collection Records.

Once in the Drouin Collection Records, you will notice that the various registers are organized in a file tree structure. We will begin by opening the Quebec folder, as the parish we are looking for is in Quebec. Inside the Quebec folder, we must find the right parish folder.

Some parishes will be listed under the name of the city or region they are located in, while others will be listed under the name of the parish itself.

In the case of Montreal-based parishes, they are first sorted under the “Mtl” folder, and then under their religious affiliation. Notre-Dame-du-St-Rosaire is listed as “Montréal (Notre-Dame-du-St-Rosaire)” under the “Catholique” folder.

Once inside the correct folder, we must navigate to the right year, which will give us access to all the images associated with that register for that specific year. It is important to know that in general, the images are listed in chronological order.
This means that the first image in the folder will contain the first events recorded in the year, which are usually the ones from January. Similarly, the last few images in the folder will be those from the end of the year.

However, in the case of Notre-Dame-du-St-Rosaire, the baptisms and marriages were recorded in two different books. As such, the 1935 marriages begin in the middle of the image series. A bit of navigation will be necessary to find the record we are looking for.

And with that, we were able to find the church record associated to the marriage form given by the Marriages 1926-1997 tool.

 

Deaths

Finding the original church record associated with a death form is a little more complicated, as the form does not provide us with the parish information. Nonetheless, the form does give us the place of residence of the deceased. With that information, we can often find the correct parish. This may prove harder for larger cities, as they often contain multiple parishes. Some detective work may be needed!

As an exemple, we will try to find the burial record associated to Louise Roy’s death form, which we obtained from a search in Deaths 1926-1997.

The form tells us that Louise Roy died on the 11th of November 1928, and that she lived in St-Hyacinthe. Although St-Hyacinthe is not identified as being the city where the death was recorded, it is likely that it is where we will find the burial since the deceased lived there.

Browsing the St-Hyacinthe folder in the Drouin Collection Records, we notice that it contains several sub-folders associated to different parishes. Since we have no way of knowing which parish would contain the burial record, we will have to browse one folder at a time. The first folder contains the Cathédrale de St-Hyacinthe parish register.

Since the death occurred in November, we begin our consultation among the last few images in the folder. It is very possible that the burial was not recorded the same day of the death, as it was common for a burial to be recorded one or two days after the death of the person. While browsing the register, we must keep in mind that the date of the burial could be the 12th or even the 13th of November, 1928.

And indeed, the burial was recorded on the 13th of November. With a little detective work, we were able to find the original church record associated to a Deaths 1926-1997 form, which provides us with some additional information regarding the event.

Useful links

The Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997 tool (subscription required)

The Drouin Collection Records (subscription required)

Subscribe to Genealogy Quebec

What is Genealogy Quebec?

The Obituary section

The Obituary section is divided in 4 subsections that contain different types of documents.

Internet Obituaries

This section, covering all of Canada from 1999 to today, does not require a subscription to the website to be viewed. In addition to being updated weekly, it currently contains over 2 million obituaries.

This section is equipped with a search engine as well as navigation categories. The search engine allows for a first name, last name and date search as well as a search for words contained in the notice.

The obituaries are sorted by province, city and publication to provide a more fluid navigation experience.

Newspaper obituaries

This section contains 656 155 obituaries published in Quebec newspapers from 1945 to 2015.  

It is organized through a file tree that sorts the notices by letter and then by name. The section is equipped with a search engine allowing you to search by name, first name and date of death. You may use the “%” character to search for part of a name. For example, a search for “Rog%” will find all the obituaries in which the subject wears a name starting with “Rog”. This allows for more generic searches and is particularly useful for names which tend to be spelled in a lot of different ways.

Death cards

This section, containing 54 000 death cards published between 1860 and today, is equipped with a search engine allowing you to search by name, first name and date of death.

Death card sourced from the tool of the same name

You may use the “%” character to search for part of a name. For example, a search for “Rog%” will find all the death cards in which the subject wears a name starting with “Rog”. This allows for more generic searches and is particularly useful for names which tend to be spelled in a lot of different ways.

Tombstones

This section contains 611 000 pictures of tombstones, indexed by name and text on the stone. 

Tombstone sourced from the tool of the same name

It is equipped with a search engine allowing you to search by family name or by the text engraved on the stone. You may search through a specific cemetery or in all of them at the same time.

Like with the death cards, the “%” character may be used to search for part of a name.

The Obituaries section can be browsed with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec here.

The LAFRANCE

The LAFRANCE is the most comprehensive research tool available on Genealogy Quebec. This database contains all of Quebec’s Catholic marriages up to 1917, as well as all of Quebec’s Catholic baptism and burial records up to 1849.

In addition to these Catholic records, all of Quebec’s Protestant marriages from 1760 to 1849, as well as 68 401 Catholic baptisms and burials from after the year 1862 are included in the database. A link to the original parish document is included with every record.

On the LAFRANCE, you will find these parish registers under two formats:

Original documents – a digitized image of the original parish register, as it was originally drafted.

St-Philippe parish register, sourced from the Drouin Collection

Record certificate – Every record in the database is indexed under what we refer to as a certificate. The certificate contains all the relevant information extracted from the record such as the names, dates, roles, occupations, relationships, marital status, etc.

Record certificate sourced from the LAFRANCE

The LAFRANCE is equipped with an intuitive search engine which allows you to search by surname, first name, time period, parish, role, gender and type of event. As a general rule of thumb, we recommend that our users begin their searches by casting a wide net, only searching for a surname and first name. If this search produces too many resultats, a time period may be added to narrow it down. Making your initial search too narrow by filling too many fields isn’t recommended.

Note that you may use the “%” character in order to search for part of a name. For example, a search for “Rog%” will find all of the records where an individual bearing a name that starts with “Rog” is mentioned. This allows you to widen your search even further, if necessary.

LAFRANCE search form

The search engine is equipped with a name dictionary, which associates a name with all of its variations. For example, a query for an individual with the surname Gauthier will prompt the search engine to look through the database for any mention of the name Gauthier as well as any of its variations, such as Gautier, Gaulthier, Gotier, etc. Thus, it isn’t necessary to manually search for multiple variations of a name.

In addition, the Likeness function makes it possible to search for a name as well as any other name that resembles it. The Likeness function differs from the name dictionary because it not only includes all of the variations of a name, but also all of the names that are similar to it in terms of pronunciation or spelling. For example, a search for Gauthier, which will include all of the variations given earlier, will also include the names Gonthier, Vauthier, Gouthier, Authier as well as their numerous variations.

Once a search has been made, you will obtain a list of results.

Search results for any mention of the name Tremblay in records dated between 1700 and 1820
  • Num.: Every record in the database is given a number that is used to identify it.
  • Date: Date on which the record was drafted
  • Type: The type of event described by the record: b (baptism), s (burial) or m (marriage)
  • Parish: Parish in which the event was celebrated
  • Roles: The role that the person(s) carry in the record: P-M (Father and Mother), S-C (Subject and Spouse), S-S (Subject and Subject, used to identify a marrying couple)

To view a record, click on the date associated with it.

Once on the certificate of the record you are looking for, you maybe view the original document by clicking on the “d1p” link which you will find at the top right of the certificate.

Detailed view of a record on the LAFRANCE

The LAFRANCE can be browsed with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec here.

The Drouin Collection Records (1621 to 1967)

The Drouin Collection Records is a collection of parish registers (baptisms, burials and marriages). This massive collection contains, among other things, the entirety of Quebec’s civil registry from 1621 to the 1940s.

Boucherville register sourced from the Drouin Collection

The collection also contains some notarized documents and censuses.

In all cases, these are original documents that have been digitized in the course of the past century.

The collection of parish registers from Quebec begins in 1621 (opening of the Catholic Register in Quebec) up to 1967. Most of the registers were photographed in the 1940s and thus do not extend to 1967. For the other collections in this database, the period covered may go beyond 1967.

The Drouin Collection Records cover all of Quebec (including non-Catholics) as well as French Acadia and part of Ontario, New Brunswick and the United States.

File tree navigation in the Drouin Collection Records

The registers are organized in a file tree. The documents are separated by collection and then by location and by year, or by letter and by name depending on the type of register.

Finally, the images are sorted in the folders by chronological order (from January to December). The trick is to identify the right collection to search in and to find the document using the location and date in which it was drafted.

The Drouin Collection Records can be browsed with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec here.