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Internal and external migration references

One of the projects I intend to pursue deals with migration issues. I want to identify the internal migration patterns for my direct ancestors, beginning in 1755 at Annapolis Royal, Annapolis County, Nova Scotia. This will be relatively “easy” because I can draw on previous research using land records and census returns. Grand-uncles, grand-aunts, and their children moved from Weymouth to other parts of southwestern Nova Scotia, mainly within Digby County, and from there to Annapolis, Lunenburg, and Yarmouth counties. These, I can follow with land records and census returns. For both of these categories, local histories may prove useful. Thirdly, there is the question of out-migration, which receives serious, but inconsistent, academic attention, yet enough to produce some useful source material. In this case, I want to focus on movements from Yarmouth, Nova Scotia to Boston. Sources that come to mind are passenger manifests and immigration documents.

As I compile my source list for this project I will add new material to this blog title. My intent is to provide us with a guide that represents my research process, concluding with timelines, maps, and written material.

What sources can I rely on to document the movements of my direct Grant ancestors within Nova Scotia?

1) Nova Scotian and Canadian census returns: 1768, 1770, 1827, 1838, 1851, 1861, and 1871 through 1931.
2) Nova Scotia Archives: Land Grant Memorials, basically requests for land from individuals or groups of men.
3) FamilySearch: land records and probate files on microfilm which can be browsed online.
4) Local histories for Annapolis and Digby counties.

Using Google Scholar, I have found a few books and articles that will give context to my research:

1) The “Boston States”: Region, Gender, and Maritime Out-Migration, 1870–1930 From the book New England and the Maritime Provinces by Betsy Beattie.
2) Immigration to Atlantic Canada: Historical Reflections Reid, John G Journal of the Royal Nova Scotia Historical Society Halifax Vol. 19, (2016): 38-53.
3) Loyalists and layabouts: the rapid rise and faster fall of Shelburne, Nova Scotia, 1783-1792 S Kimber Anchor Canada – 2010.
4) Settlement and ethnicity in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, 1753-1800: a history of the foreign-protestant community KS Paulsen – 1996 – search.proquest.com.
5) Population and settlement in Nova Scotia Peggie M. Hobson Pages 49-63 | Published online: 27 Feb 2008; Taylor Francis online; from “The Scottish Geographical Magazine” vol 70 No 2 Sep 1954.
6) Journal of the Royal Nova Scotia Historical Society Volume 25, 2022, pp. 1-107: Emigration and the Limits of Public Policy in Quebec and Nova Scotia, 1867–1900″ Patrick Lacroix Read before the society October 21, 2020.

Many of you will know about the enormous free database developed by Internet Archive (www.archive.org). There are literally thousands of books and media sources available to read online, borrow, or download in a variety of formats. If I feel like browsing the database, I search using a single term, such as migration, immigration, Nova Scotia, or census, among others. There is an advanced search format that allows the user to enter more discrete terms, for example in line one, enter migration, and in line two enter Nova Scotia. That will bring up more than twenty books about migration to Nova Scotia. Note that some of the titles are repeated with different covers! Until a few days ago, I would annotate a search log to keep track of the books I use for my research. However, I have discovered a method of saving the title in a form provided by Internet Archive. Select the title and open the information page; find a series of choices opposite the title of the book (Add to List, Favorite, Share, Flag); choose “Add to List” and save the title, or create a subject folder, e.g. Nova Scotia – Education, or Nova Scotia – Immigration; and save the title. I now have about thirty categories, each with several titles saved in them. There are too many to enumerate here, but a future blog will cite those I found most useful.

The Ottawa Public Library in Ottawa, Ontario provides a multitude of books, journals, newspapers, and music and video sources. There are two Library Editions of genealogy websites, Ancestry (available for in-library use only) and MyHeritage (in-library and remote use). For my purposes, the Gale Academic OneFile has provided relatively few book references and journal articles to support my interest in migration studies. At the same time, a surprising number of articles about Acadians and African Nova Scotians were included in search results. A few of the migration results follow:

1) Calculated Kindness: Global Restructuring, Immigration and Settlement in Canada. Rose Baaba Folson, ed. Halifax: Fernwood, 2004. 172 pp. $17.95 US sc.

2) The Fault Lines of Empire: Political Differentiation in Massachusetts and Nova Scotia, ca. 1760-1830. By Elizabeth Mancke. (New York: Routledge, 2005. Pp. xi, 214. Cloth, $85.00; Paper, $27.95.)

3) Planters, paupers, and pioneers: English settlers in Atlantic Canada. By Lucille h. Campey. Toronto: Dundurn press, 2010. 470 pages. $35.00. Lucille Campey’s study of English emigration.

4) Cummins, Jim. “The Emigrant’s Guide to North America.” Canadian Ethnic Studies Journal 32, no. 2 (2000): 144+. Gale Academic OneFile (accessed April 15, 2024). https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A82883518/AONE?u=otta35732&sid=bookmark-AONE&xid=536142a0.

5) Royle, Stephen A., and Caitriona Ni Laoire. “‘Dare the boist’rous main’: the role of the Belfast News Letter in the process of emigration from Ulster to North America, 1760-1800.” The Canadian Geographer 50, no. 1 (2006): 56+. Gale Academic OneFile (accessed April 15, 2024). https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A147200462/AONE?u=otta35732&sid=bookmark-AONE&xid=01e5ea3d.

6) The Atlantic Region to Confederation. A History, ed. Phillip A. Buckner and John G. Reid (Toronto/Buffalo: U. of Toronto P./Acadiensis P., 1994; pp. xviii + 491).

7) Mainville, Curtis. “‘Our isolation is almost unbearable’: a case study in New Brunswick out-migration, 1901-1914.” Journal of New Brunswick Studies/Revue d’etudes sur le Nouveau-Brunswick [JNBS/RENB] 6, no. 2 (2015): 26+. Gale Academic OneFile (accessed April 15, 2024). https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A439107338/AONE?u=otta35732&sid=bookmark-AONE&xid=b8d3c21e.



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