Search Your Genealogy

The Provincial Archives of Alberta is a rich and vast resource for professional and amateur genealogists looking to trace an Albertan family history. Whether you're looking to solve a family mystery, answer a specific question about your own family's background or just have a passion for history, the Provincial Archives of Alberta is a must-visit.

New to genealogical research? Learn the basics of genealogy through our guide.

Unsure where to start your research?

Take a look at a local history. Local histories are books written by the community about the community. Many of these histories include biographical, sketches of families in the community. The Reference Library holds approximately 1,500 published local and community histories from across the province.

Are you looking for a birth, marriage or death record?

Birth, marriage and death records are called Vital Statistics. The Provincial Archives of Alberta holds thousands of vital statistic records, though there are limitations. According to the Genealogy section of the Vital Statistics Act, the Provincial Archives of Alberta is able to provide access to:

  • Birth records (but not adoption records) that are older than 120 years
  • Stillbirth records that are older than 75 years
  • Marriage records older than 75 years
  • Death records older than 50 years

If you are interested in records outside the above date ranges, you should contact Vital Statistics directly. To learn about whether or not you are eligible to order records outside the genealogical dates, please visit the Service Alberta - Family and Life Events webpage or telephone 780-427-7013.

How do I see a birth, marriage or death record at the Provincial Archives of Alberta?

You can start this research from home or you can come into the Reading Room. If you prefer to start from home, you can view lists of records below. Please note that some lists are arranged by place and some lists are arranged by individuals. Access to vital statistics records is not same-day service. Rather, requests can take up to 10 business days.

Listings of vital statistics records and indexes available at the Provincial Archives:

Are you looking for a baptism, marriage or burial record?

The Provincial Archives of Alberta holds records for several faith organizations. See below for a list of groups and the years available. Please be aware that there are restrictions on some of these records. Please contact the Reading Room for additional information on any of these groups:

  • United Church of Canada (ca. 1830s - present)
  • Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (1842 - 1980)
  • Anglican Church of Canada (ca. 1870 - ca. 2000)
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ca. 1895 - ca. 2000)

Are you looking for census records?

The Provincial Archives holds microfilm copies of the Federal census for what is now Alberta for 1881, 1891, 1901, 1906, 1911 and 1916. There are indices available for most of these censuses.

The 1921 federal census is only available through Ancestry.ca, and will not become available on microfilm. You may access the Ancestry database in the Reading Room at no charge.

Are you looking for passenger lists?

The Provincial Archives holds microfilm copies of passenger lists for the ports of Halifax, Montreal, Quebec City and Saint John, New Brunswick from approximately 1865 to 1919 (the exact dates of holdings vary by port). There is no index; the lists are organized by port of arrival, then by date. You will need to visit the Reading Room to view these records.

Are you researching the history of your home?

The Provincial Archives holds a large collection of city directories. These were published annually for Calgary (1910 to 1991) and Edmonton (1908 to 1986). Directories were also published less frequently for smaller centres (e.g., Grand Prairie, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat and Red Deer). Some directories can be accessed online through Peel's Prairie Provinces.

Are you looking for homestead records?

Please visit our Homesteads Records page to learn more.

Are you looking for divorce records?

The Provincial Archives holds divorce records for several judicial districts from around the province (ca. 1918 - ca. 1975). Indices are available for many of the records in the Reading Room.

To locate a particular file, it is extremely helpful to know which judicial districts in Alberta someone was divorced. Court contacts and maps of the current judicial districts can be found at the Alberta Courts Court of Queens Bench website.

Are you looking for probate records?

The Provincial Archives holds probate records (which includes wills) for several judicial districts from around the province (ca. 1884-ca.1975). Indices are available for many of the records. Files less than 30 years old will still be in the custody of the Court.

To locate a particular file, it is extremely helpful to know where in Alberta someone was living at the time of his or her death. Court contacts and maps of the current judicial districts can be found at the Alberta Courts Court of Queens Bench website.