Sunday, February 24, 2013

Census Sunday: I’m ready

I’m ready for the 1921 Canadian census, that is.

Flag of Canada

Canada’s 6th federal census since Confederation will be released to the public on 1 June 2013. On that date, Statistics Canada, the current custodian, will transfer the census records to Library and Archives Canada.

Other jurisdictions, like the USA, release their censuses somewhat earlier than we do in Canada. Here, the law says that 92 calendar years must elapse before the 1921 census can be released to the public.1

John D. Reid has an article at his Anglo-Celtic Connections blog about the upcoming census titled 100 Days to the 1921 Census of Canada.

Library and Archives Canada stated last year that the “intention is to make [the 1921 census] available to researchers online, in the same format as previous censuses, as soon as possible after that date [of 1 June 2013]”.2

Although there’s a little over three months to go, with no firm date as to when the census’ digitised images will be available at LAC, I’ve put together a list of my ancestors that I’ll want to check when the census is viewable.

The list is a basic table with columns for my ancestor (with dates of birth and death), when married and name of spouse, and where my ancestor likely lived on 1 June 1921, the official enumeration date. Here is a glance at what the first few entries look like:

Possible Residence
on 1 June 1921
Fred Belair (1889-1991)
1926: Julie Vanasse
Ramore, Cochrane District, Ontario (maybe working for the railroad)
Julie Vanasse (1896-1967)

Chapeau, Pontiac County, Quebec (at home with her parents) or Ottawa, Carleton County, Ontario (where she worked before she married)
Eugène Desgroseilliers (1901-1960)
1925: Juliette Beauvais
Moonbeam, Cochrane District, Ontario (his youngest brothers were born here in 1920 and 1923) 
Juliette Beauvais (1900-1947)

Montpellier, Labelle County, Quebec (her twin brothers were born here in May 1921; she probably lived at home until she married) 

Until the census is publicly available, you might like to see a sample image of the 1921 Census of Canada population schedule and read the enumerator instructions at Canadian Censuses: 1921 Census.


1. “Statistics Act”, 18.1 (1) [Statistics Act. 1970-71-72, c. 15, s. 1]; Statistics Canada ( : accessed 21 February 2013).

2. “1921 Census countdown!”, Library and Archives Canada Blog, 27 March 2012 ( : accessed 21 February 2013).

Copyright © 2013, Yvonne Demoskoff.


  1. I am a fan of our census, although it's not always correct, but always a good place to begin and often times really produce information, or at least a sensible guide!

    1. I almost always begin my search for an individual or family by looking at the census records. It is very much a case, though, of making sure to corroborate (where possible) the info found in the census with other records.