Listing of Regional Libraries, Archives, Museums
Housed at the Richmond Hill Public Library, the collection includes references, indexes, histories, genealogies, transcriptions, registers, lineages, newsletters and journals, church registers, cemetery transcriptions and more. The book collection is accessible by searching the RHPL Library Catalogue. Call numbers end in “OGS”. The material is shelved in a separate area near the east wall.
Ontario Genealogical Society Catalogue
Contains the holdings of the Ontario Genealogical Society Provincial Library located at the Canadiana Collection, North York Public Library, Toronto. The Canadiana Collection has an emphasis on local history and genealogy. In addition to the holdings of the Ontario Genealogical Society, it also houses the holdings of the Canadian Society of Mayflower Descendants, the Jewish Genealogical Society of Canada (Toronto Division), and the York Pioneer & Historical Society.
The Quaker Archives and Library of Canada has two parts: The Canadian Yearly Meeting Archives and The Arthur Garratt Dorland Reference Library. Three indexes are available online: the Canadian Quaker Genealogical Index; the Dorland Reference Library Catalogue and the Canadian Yearly Meeting Archives. The Quaker Archives and Library is located at Pickering College, Newmarket
The Society for the Preservation of Historic Thornhill (SPOHT) established the Thornhill Archives & Special Collections in 2001.
Regional Municipality of York Archives
17250 Yonge Street Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 6Z1, (905) 895-1231
The Regional Archives holds the Municipal Council minutes and other government related documents for York Region. These records include selected records from the Home District Council (Minutes and By-laws from 1842 to 1849), the United Counties of York and Peel (Minutes from 1850 to 1865 with gaps), and records from York County (Minutes, Report and By-laws from 1855 to 1936 with gaps). The collection also includes an assortment of photographs and artifacts, and a reference library on York Region history.
The Aurora Public Library has a number of resources available for individuals conducting research in local history and genealogy. The library also has The Banner from 1877 to the present, and other local newspapers, in microform.
The Aurora Heritage Centre is a project of the Aurora Historical Society that opened in the early summer of 2006. This dynamic, multi-use facility provides a focal point for social and cultural events and is located in the 1886 provincially recognized historic site known locally as ‘Church Street School.’ The Centre is home to collections of historical artifacts and archival documents covering the range of the town’s history in the 19th and 20th centuries.
The Hillary House Koffler Museum of Medicine, Aurora
Built in 1862, Hillary House is recognized by the National Historic Sites and Monuments Board as one of Canada’s best examples of Gothic Revival architecture. It contains a significant collection of medical instruments, books, papers, household furnishings, and equipment dating from the early nineteenth to the late twentieth century and is open to the public as Hillary House, the Koffler Museum of Medicine.
East Gwillimbury Public Library
The reference collection at the library includes information on local history and genealogy. In addition, the library can borrow materials for patrons from other libraries through the interlibrary loan network, including genealogical information from the National Archives and the Archives of Ontario.
In the 1820s, a small idealistic community fashioned a dramatic architectural testament to its vision. The Temple of the Children of Peace at Sharon is now a national historic site.
The website includes a brief description of the archives holdings, as well as hours of operation, museum admission fees, archival research fees, lists of museum events and workshops, an online newsletter and contact information.
The council meeting minutes from 1850 on have been digitized and are available online.
King Township Museum
2920 King Rd. King City Ontario, L7B 1L6, (905) 833-2331
Tuesday to Friday (and Saturdays in July and August) 10:00 am – 4:30 p.m
Admission is free – special events and educational programs are offered throughout the year.
The King, Nobleton, and Schomberg branches of KTPL offer patrons a wide selection of local history and genealogy resources that include local histories, genealogies, scrapbooks, birth, marriage and death indexes, microfilms, and Women’s Institute resources. The archives of the King Township Historical Society are housed in the King City branch of the library.
This local repository maintains a collection of resources for the genealogist, including census returns, assessment rolls, deed abstracts, newspapers, memorial inscriptions, diaries, ledgers, deeds, registers, correspondence and photographs. Published genealogical records, local histories, family research files and finding aids are also available for the use of researchers.
The John Lunau Heritage Research Centre is a small, evolving local history collection, focusing on the history of the Town of Markham, as embodied in print, manuscripts, maps, and photographs.
The Newmarket library maintains both a local history and a Canadiana collection that includes an index of the Newmarket Era, cemetery listings for most of York Region, census material for York County, and a Newmarket pamphlet file.
Located in Newmarket, the museum has a collection of many artifacts specific to Newmarket, and houses the Newmarket Historical Society Archives. These archives include tax assessment rolls, voters’ lists, copies of the Newmarket Era newspaper 1900’s to 1985, burial records for some cemeteries, Tweedsmuir Histories, church records for St. Andrew’s Presbyterian and St. Paul’s Anglican churches, local history books and much more.
Resources in the Local History & Genealogy room include the Helen Schwab Collection (genealogical data on founding families of York, Durham and Peel Regions); Family Search databases; census returns; birth, marriage and death records; a local history database (indexes of local newspapers, both past and present); and the holdings of the York Region Branch OGS library.
Set in picturesque Amos Wright Park, the centre is an 1840’s Regency style cottage, fully restored to reflect this historical period.
The Local Studies Collection has information concerning the history of Vaughan as a township, a town and finally a city. Genealogists will find material to construct family trees, while library users needing access to municipal documents – both current and historical – will benefit from this collection.
The archives contain items such as municipal records, assessment rolls, birth, marriage and death registers, voters’ lists, historic photographs, maps from the 1850’s to the 1980’s, family histories, land records dating back to the 1790’s, newspapers and directories, business and church records, and census records.
The reference department has a large range of information on hand including government documents, current and historical data relating to the community and a local report file.
The Museum site covers about 2 acres and includes 5 historic structures dating from the mid-1800’s. Anyone interested in researching their family history is welcome to make use of the Museum’s on-site reference library and archives which include many different kinds of genealogical records and historic photographs.
Eildon Hall Museum – Sibbald Point Provincial Park
26465 Park Rd. Sutton West, Ontario, L0E 1R0, (905) 722 – 7587
Visit the Sibbald estate and experience genteel living in the heart of Georgina.
Costumed interpreters, treasured heirlooms, and priceless family stories await you.
Open July to August, please call ahead for details. Located at Sibbald Point Provincial Park (2kms north of Hwy. 48)
York Region District School Board Heritage Schoolhouse
2 Valleywood Drive, Markham, Ontario, L3R 8H3, (905) 470-6119
The Heritage Schoolhouse serves as the museum, archives and living history site of the York Region District School Board. The archives consist of the artifacts and records of the development of education in the County, then Region of, York, including school artifacts, student work, examinations, school registers, photographs, books, maps and more.
Research files include records pertaining to each school in York Region (past and present.)
Open year round, by appointment.