In addition to Library and Archives Canada’s Lower Canada Land Petitions (1764-1841), archive.org has the List of lands granted by the Crown in the Province of Quebec, from 1763 to 31st December 1890 [Liste des terrains concédés par la Couronne dans la province de Québec, de 1763 au 31 décembre 1890] (Quebec: Charles-François Langlois, Printer to the Queen, 1891) available online in several formats (including Full Text, PDF, and DjVu).
This online, digitized version of a microfilm is admittedly a bit cumbersome to read (there are 1927 [one thousand nine hundred and twenty-seven] pages, after all!, and some of the text is quite faint/faded), but definitely worth the effort if you’re looking for ancestors who settled in Lower Canada/Quebec.
Here is the listing for my maternal 3x great-grandfather George Vallely [here Vallellee] (born Ireland [Co. Armagh?] about 1809), who received a grant for 100 acres on the northeast half of Lot 4, Range 3, Bristol township, Pontiac Co. on 18 July 1877 (click preview to see larger image):
The final two columns (not highlighted) for George Vallellee give the numbers “27” and “149”: a reference to Book 27, page 149 of the Letters Patent Books, which are housed at BAnQ (Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec).
And obviously some of the names on the above page are impossible to read, as they are completely faded out.
However, if your ancestor’s name or other relevant details are completely faded out in one part of the List of lands granted by the Crown in the Province of Quebec, please do not despair (or not yet, at any rate). The List (of lands granted by the Crown in the Province of Quebec and etc.) actually gives you two chances to find your ancestor’s land grant info:
- in the main list (List, county by county and township by township, pp. 21-1114; and
- in the Alphabetical Index of the names of the grantees (pp. 1123-1927).
The main list (from which the above example of George Vallely’s land grant listing is taken) is arranged alphabetically, first by county; and then, within a county, alphabetically by township; and then, within a township, chronologically by the date of the grant. The index is arranged alphabetically by the surname of the grantee. Here is the second listing for George Vallely [Vallellee], from page 1893 of the Alphabetical Index (click preview to see larger image):
Note that the last column refers back to page 825 (the main, county by county, township by township, list). Note also that the alphabetic index is roughly alphabetical by the first letter of the grantee’s surname; then by county; then by township. I say “roughly” because, as even the page just above will indicate, the alphabetization is by no means exact. You may have to search through a number of “V” (or “A” or “B” or whatever was the first letter of your ancestor’s surname) to discover your ancestor in the alphabetical index.
By the way, if you subscribe to ancestry.ca (and if you’re serious about tracing your Canadian ancestors, you probably should),1. you will have access to a more bare-bones versions of the above, in ancestry’s “Quebec, Canada, Land Grants, 1763-1890” database. Here, for example, is ancestry.ca’s Quebec land grants listing for George Vallellee:
Ancestry.ca’s information is taken from Robert Dunn and Derek Hopkins, comp. Alphabetical Index to the Land Grants by the Crown in the province of Quebec from 1763 to 31st December 1890 ( Pointe Claire, Quebec: Quebec Family History Society, 2005), but with, obviously, only some of the relevant information given: George Vallellee [Vallely], Bristol [township], Pontiac [County], 100 acres, 18 July 1877; but with no reference to the Book and page numbers of the Letters Patent Books.
Use ancestry.ca (if you subscribe) for broad proof/indication of a relevant land grant record; then move to the online, free if cumbersome, 1891 indexed transcription of the land patents; then consult BAnQ for the full record, with all recorded details.
- This is not a paid endorsement, just a statement of personal opinion. I have no ties to ancestry.ca, beyond that of a subscriber, nor to any other paid subscription service ↩