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Ontario GenWeb Project: WANTED: Settlers
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WANTED: Settlers

One of the questions genealogists ask is Why did my ancestor choose Upper Canada? (or Canada West, or Ontario). One of the answers could be advertisements, or rather - propaganda. Another was emigration schemes. In the 1800's the British government wanted to ensure their stronghold on this newly forming country, and one way to do this was to fill it with settlers who were loyal to (or indebted to) the British Crown.

This page has a collection of such advertisements and schemes gathered from various sources. If you have any to add, please do so.

"In 1855, an Irishman by the name of Thomas P. French was appointed agent for the settlement of Ottawa and its vicinity. He published an advertisement in Prussia, Scandinavia and Ireland, saying:

One hundred acres will be given to any settler eighteen years old...who will put in a state of cultivation at least twelve acres of the land in the course of four years...erect on it a house at least 20x18 feet and reside on the lot until the conditions of settlement are duly performed."
Quoted from: The First Polish Settlement Of Kaszuby, Northern Ontario

In 1832, the London Lead Mining Company paid for 124 people to emigrate from the lead mining area around Alston, Cumberland England, to alleviate the problems resulting from a depression in the industry. I do not know if the emigration scheme was repeated, but do know that other mining families from the area emigrated later.
From: Eileen Powers, 11 Aug 2000. I received this in the Upper Canada mailing list: UPPER-CANADA-L@rootsweb.com

I found while doing my family research that a number of family members left Darlington Twp. in Durham Co. Ontario, to emigrate to Wisconsin. While searching through the local newspaper The Canadian Statesman, in the mid to late 1800's, there was this advertisement. Wisconsin Lands, 500,000 Acres, on the Line of the Wisconsin Central Rail Road, for full particulars which will be sent free. Address Charles L. Colbey, Land Commissioner Minawankee, Wis.
From: James Potter, 20 Nov 2000

"A very early Irish advertisement designed to lure settlers to Upper Canada. It states that "All religions are tolerated...no taxes or thytes are paid...and tradesmen of all denominations are in great request." It was rather unusual to advertise for tradesmen rather than farmers."

"In His Majesty's Province of Upper Canada. Forty Thousand Acres of Land to be Granted for Ever, in the Township of Norwich, ...a Most Healthy Situation on the Banks of Lake Ontario...Cork [Ireland], 1st November, 1794."
Quoted from: Impressions: 250 Years of Printing... In The Lives of Canadians

"Canada, once known as British North America, has been home to Mennonites since 1786. The first Canadian Mennonites came from Pennsylvania to Upper Canada and were followed by an intermittent stream of immigrants which swelled on at least three other occasions into major movements of Mennonites to Canada. This group of Mennonites from Pennsylvania were a part of the group known as the Swiss-South German Mennonites who migrated to North America both directly from Switzerland as well as from France, Germany and Galicia-Volhynia beginning in 1683."

"The first group of Mennonites that came to Canada were pushed in part by hostility at home arising from their pacifism during the American Revolution. But they were also pulled by the promises and opportunities of a new western agricultural frontier where minority rights seemed better protected than in revolutionary America. Their original migration to North America was the result of severe persecution towards their way of life and faith, particularly their denunciation of infant baptism."

"It is estimated that approximately 2,000 Mennonites came from Pennsylvania to Ontario between 1786 and 1825. A detailed Canadian census in 1841 enumerated 5,379 Mennonites, of whom 3,022 lived in the Niagara District, 933 in the Wellington (Waterloo) district, and 859 in the Home (Markham) district."
From: Gwen Hasenpflug; Quoted from Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1989. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 12 August 2006

If you would like to submit an Upper Canada / Canada West settlement advertisement, or information about an emigration scheme, please fill out the form below.

PLEASE - this form is only for sending in information about this topic. This form is NOT for requesting anything (sorry, but requests sent through this form will be ignored).

Your name:

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Please type the information/settler's advertisement here:

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