Numerous requests have been received for information on how to trace family descent to prove Algonquin, Ojibwa or Nipissing descent. The following has been developed by the Algonquins of Golden Lake First Nation Negotiation Department, to assist you in your search. If you are trying to trace your Aboriginal family history, the following are suggestions to accomplish this sometimes difficult task.
Where to Start
Write down any vital statistics you know about your parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents, great aunts and uncles, great grandparents etc. who are in your Aboriginal line of descent.
Organize your knowledge on a chart, a family tree.
Try to fill in approximate dates and probable places for births, marriages and deaths. Think back on how old you were the last time you saw you grandmother, and did she die soon or long after that.
Think of your extended family, and who might be able to add information or who would have pictures to show. Write, phone and/or visit them.
Tell them you are building a family tree. Come with a list of detailed questions, or with your chart, and ask if they can fill in some of the blanks. If they say they can't remember, ask what the person was like, or what work they did. From general recollections, many people may gradually begin to remember. Ask to see some old pictures. You will learn a lot while someone describes who is in the pictures and when they were taken.
Take brief written notes while you are there and fill them in immediately before you leave or run a cassette recorder during the visit. Ask them if they know of anyone else who might help you fill in blanks. Ask them for any papers that you could copy to help you document your family tree. Find out where the families lived, the town or township, and the time frame that they lived there.
When you have names and places, you can then begin to start your research for documented proof. Start with yourself, with proof of who your parents are. The following documents may be used as proof:
Extended (long) Form Birth Certificate
Affidavits (written declaration made "under oath" before a Notary Public or other authorized officer.)
Then do the same for each of your parents, your grandparents, etc. that are of Algonquin, Ojibwa or Nipissing descent.
Places to Search
Archives of Ontario 77 Grenville St. Unit #300 Toronto, ON M5S 1B3
National Archives of Canada 395 Wellington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0N3
The Archivist Inter-Repository Loan Program Hudson's Bay Company Archives Provincial Archives of Manitoba 200 Vaughan Street Winnipeg, Manitoba R3C 1T5 Tel: 204-945-4949
Indian Affairs & Northern Development Genealogical Research Unit 10 Wellington St Hull, P.Z. K1A 0H4
These records can also be obtained through your local libraries for your viewing. You must know the Township, County name and year you are looking for. Census records are available from 1861 to 1911. These records were taken every 10 years.
[Note that as of 2013, 1852 and 1921 census information is also available]
Quebec RecordsArchives Nationales du Quebec Centre d´Archives de l”Outauais 170, rue Hotel de ville Bureau s-120 (sou-sol) Hull, P.Q. T8X 4C2 1-819-772-3010 (Bilingual services offered)
River Desert First Nation P.O. Box 309 Maniwaki, P.Q. J9E 3C9 Tel: 1-819-449-5170
Archives Nationales du Quebec Centre D´Archives de L´Abitibi/Temiscamingue 27, Rue Du Terminus Quest Rouyn_Noranda, Quebec J9X 2P3 (Bilingual service offered)
Military RecordsPersonnel Records Unit Researcher's Services Division National Archives of Canada Ottawa, ON K1A 0N3 Fax: 1-613-992-7458
Management of Inquiries Reference Services Genealogy Unit 395 Welllington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0N3
Genealogy GroupsUpper Ottawa Valley Genealogical Group P.O. Box 972 Pembroke, ON K8A 7M5
The Ontario Genealogical Society Kingston Branch OGS P.O. Box 1394 Kingston, ON K7L 5C6
The Ontario Genealogical Society Nipissing and District Branch P.O. Box 93 North Bay, ON P1B 8G8
The Ontario Genealogical Society Ottawa Branch K1G 3H8
Sharon Murphy –OGS277 Victoria Street S Kincardine, ON N2Z 2V9 519-396-7631 All of Ontario research Email: email@example.com
Adoptions of Aboriginal Children
Ministry of Community & Social Services Adoption Disclosure Registrar Child Welfare Branch Lucliff Place, 2nd Floor 700 Bay Street Toronto, ON M7A 1E9
Indian Affairs & Northern Development Adoption Disclosure 10 Wellington St., 18th Floor Hull, Quebec K1A 0H4 (613-593-9176)
Algonquin & Nipissing GenealogyAlgonquins of Golden Lake First Nation Membership, Lands & Estates Mrs. Jan Leroux P.O. Box 100 Golden Lake, ON K0J 1X0 (613-625-2800)
Algonquins of Golden Lake First Nation Enrolment Clerk & Genealogy Ms. Helen Aubrey P.O. Box 300 Golden Lake, ON K0J 1X0 (613-625-2397) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Most Churches may have a record of a Baptism, Confirmation of a Marriage or Burial of the person you are looking for. Your local Church of Latter Day Saints is a very good place to start. A lot of times parents' names will be listed which will help you to prove your descent.
Hospital records will show births, where at least the mother's name is listed, but you need to know the hospital and the date of birth of the child.