History Comes Alive at

   Archives Lanark [Canada]   . . .

Each year many patrons from Canada and other countries visit the Archives to research their family roots and to learn more about where their ancestors lived. Local historians and genealogists, families, church groups and school children use the Archives.  Intrigued? See for yourself.

ABOUT THE ARCHIVES

The foundation of the Archives' collections is the land records for Lanark County. At the beginning of this millennium, the land abstracts along with the supporting deeds and legal documents for all land transactions from the 1860s to the mid 20th century were destined for destruction until a lobby group of historians and genealogists convinced Queen's Park to allow organizations in each of the Counties to take and preserve the records.  The opportunity to preserve the original land documents provided the incentive to move forward with the creation of a central repository for the preservation of historical and genealogical documentation for future generations.  Archives Lanark opened to the public in February 2002.  Since then our collections have grown extensively and are representative of every corner of the County.

Archives Lanark is an incorporated organization within the Province of Ontario and a registered charity within Canada.


Interactive Map of Early Land Ownership
Beckwith, Drummond/North Elmsley and Tay Valley Townships


Early Land Ownership

In 2016, to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the founding of the Perth Military Settlement, a searchable database and interactive map of the present-day townships that now incorporate the original townships of the Settlement was created by the hard work and volunteer efforts of Barrie Crampton, Ann MacPhail and CGIS Spatial Solutions of Perth.  More information about the Settlement is available on the Perth and District Historical Society website at http://www.perthhs.org/index.html.
To access the interactive map go to the following link:
http://www.cgis.com/cpal/Default.aspx?CLIENT=LANARK&MAPTYPE=MilitarySettlement.
(This map and a searchable database are also available from the Lanark County Tourism web site at http://lanarkcountytourism.com/.)

When downloaded, the map will appear with the interactive area shown in blue.  You can zoom in to an area of the map using the zoom ladder at the top right of the map (not shown above).  You can reposition the map by placing the cursor on it and dragging it with the left button of the mouse held down.   You will see that the map includes lot and concession lines.  If you hover the mouse on a particular lot you will get a pop-up box that shows the names of the people who received the Crown grants for each half of the lot, the circumstances of the grants and the names of the second landowner for each half-lot.
You may notice that the lot and concession lines are sometimes positioned up to half a lot or concession from the lines shown on other maps of the County.  The lines on this map are taken from Ontario Natural Resources maps and appear to be correct based on other data.  The lines on other maps are often taken from old Ontario Dept. of Highways maps which do not appear to be totally correct. 

Subsequent Land Ownership

If you want to see who owned a lot after the first two owners and the costs and other circumstances involved (mortgages, wills etc.), then the best place to visit is Archives Lanark at Drummond Centre.  Archives Lanark has the land registers which list all transactions on each lot, some up to about 1980.  Archives Lanark also has many deeds and some other related documents for each lot from about 1865 to about 1980, not just for the townships in the interactive part of the map but for all the townships and towns in Lanark County (although some of the documents for the towns may be missing).  Most of these documents contain original signatures of the parties involved.


Resource Materials Available

The Lanark County Land Registry Abstract Books and Land Deeds dating from 1868 to 1955

Listings for local cemeteries, census records, early church records of baptisms and marriages 

Scrap-books of births, deaths and marriages gleaned from local newspapers.  Compiled alphabetically, they complement the published indexes of the Almonte Gazette, Lanark Era and Perth Courier 

 

Original editions of The Almonte Gazette, Carleton Place Canadian, Lanark Era and the Perth Courier (also available on microfilm)

Women's Institute Tweedsmuir History Books

Family genealogy studies and local histories.

  Sample of available collections:

  • Ellen Foster Collection, Smiths Falls area
  • Leduc/Steele Collection, Almonte/Ramsay area
  • Microfilm/fiche - local weekly newspapers, Canada Census
  • R.J. Stead photographic & Glass Slides collection (late 1800s)
  • School Registers and Inspectors’ Reports
  • The Poole Papers (County legal documents)
  • Viola Reid Collection, Pakenham area

Additional information