Primary Sources

Images | Objects | Documents | Data


  • Canadian Heritage Gallery – Canadian Heritage Galleries is an extensive collection of historical Canadiana in the internet. Images are organized by
    People; Natural Resources – Forestry, Gold Mining, Mines; Places Organized by Province & City / Town; Nature; Artwork In Alphabetical Order by Artist’s Last Name; Politics – Federal, Provincial Documents, Posters & Signs, Arms, Cartoons, Proclamations; Structures – Factories, Forts, Government Buildings; First Nations – Activities, People, Reserves, Camps & Dwellings; Transportation – Roads, Ships & Boats, Trains & Railways; Groups of People – Immigrants, Loyalists, Workers, Wars, Battles & Rebellions, Battles 1660-1760, WWI, WWII; Maps & Plans – The Canadas, Cities, Towns & Forts; and other categories.
  • CanPix Gallery – CanPix is an image base of over 6,500 pictures and audiovisual resources for Canadian Studies. You can search, view and extract images of important Canadian people, events and places, examples of Canadian culture, flags, coats of arms, flowers and maps of Canada and the provinces, audio and text files, including O Canada. You can browse the CanPix Image Base by Time Period, or Category.
  • National Gallery of Canada – This site holds over 5,000 images of works of art in the National Gallery’s collection, providing a closer look at particular rooms, periods, artists, and works of art. The majority of the Gallery’s collection of 42,000 works may be located by searching the database.
  • Canada’s Digital Collections – Canada’s Digital Collections hosts over 300 web sites of Canada’s history, industries, heritage, people, museums, archives and other material in the public domain. It is organized alphabetically and by subjects such as: Business, Science & Technology; Fine Arts; First Peoples; Geography; Government; History; Canada At War; Canadian History; Places in Canada and Local History; Labour; Literature; Social Studies; and,Women.
  • Canada’s Black History Some Missing Pages This site contains primary and secondary source materials about the Black community in the history of Quebec and Canada. Organized into eight units spanning the periods in Quebec and Canadian history from the French Regime to the post-war decades of the twentieth century.

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  • Objects in the Canadian Museum of Civilization – Objects are grouped by category. Categories are: Archaeology, Structures, Ethnology, Furnishings, Folk Culture, Personal Artifacts, History, Tools and Equipment for Materials, Living History, Tools and Equipment for Science and Technology, Canadian Postal Museum, Tools and Equipment for Communication, Canadian Children’s Museum, Distribution and Transportation Artifacts, Canadian War Museum, Communication Artifacts, and Recreational Artifacts.



  • Historic Maps of Canada

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  • Early Canadiana Online – Early Canadiana Online (ECO) is a full text online collection of more than 3,000 books and pamphlets documenting Canadian history from the first European contact to the late 19th century. The collection is particularly strong in literature, women’s history, native studies, travel and exploration, and the history of French Canada.
  • Manuscript on-line: Arctic Dawn – A Journey from Prince of Wales’s Fort in Hudson’s Bay to the Northern Ocean undertaken by order of the Hudson’s Bay Company for the Discovery of Copper Mines, a North West Passage, &c. In the Years 1769, 1770, 1771, & 1772. by Samuel Hearne – First-hand account of 18th century Englishman working for the Hudson’s Bay Company. The manuscript’s editor made some changes in word spellings and makes this disclaimer: “Samuel Hearne wrote from the viewpoint of an eighteenth-century Englishman. His attitudes toward Native Canadian life and beliefs (although enlightened for his time) may be judged in places as being racist or sexist in tone. In addition, his descriptions of gruesome, disgusting or violent incidents may be unsettling to the sensitive reader. Hearne should be given credit for telling the truth as he saw it, especially since many of his contemporaries had a habit of glossing over disturbing material and thus painting a less accurate picture of the world as it really exists. “
  • Historic Documents Online – Organized by the University of Victoria, this is a collection of links to historic documents of all kinds, grouped chronologically.
  • Treaties – Indian and Northern Affairs Canada – Complete treaties listed by number and title.
  • Canadian Constitutional Documents – Hyperlinks embedded in brief historical essay link user to complete copies of documents. This is followed by an annotated description of each document with hyperlinks to them. Documents include acts to create provinces and territories including Nunavut.
  • Documents of the Constitutional, Legal, and Political History of Newfoundland and Labrador – The documents are listed in chronological order, annotated with a brief description, and connected by a link to a complete copy.
  • North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) – Complete document. The first page of this site is like a table of contents with each section at its own hyperlink, and briefly described.
  • Northwest Resistance – An archived collection of documents, images and ephemera relating to the 1885 political upheaval involving Metis and the Canadian Government – Users may search a database or browse an alphabetical listing of: Authors, Subjects, and Titles held in the University of Saskatchewan Library and Archives.
  • CanText – Canadian Documents Library – Selected historical documents organized by subject on the title page of the site.

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  • Ship Information Database – This database contains information about ships that were registered in Canadian ports or sailed in Canadian waters. Users may browse or search these categories: Vessels, Masters, Owners, Builders, and Voyages.

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