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John M. Kelly Library Research Guides

CLT413H1: The Irish in Canada - Customized Resources

CLT413H1: The Irish in Canada - Customized Resources

British Welcome and Welfare League, group of immigrants, Irish. Adapted with a PD license from the City of Toronto Archives.

British Welcome and Welfare League, group of immigrants, Irish. Adapted with a PD license from the City of Toronto Archives.

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Primary Accounts

Davin, Nicholas Flood. The Irishman in Canada. Toronto: Maclear, 1877.

Download this book as a PDF.


Emigration: Copy of a Letter from Mr. John Freeman, Residing at Goderich, Lake Huron, Upper Canada, Dated the 21st of June, 1832, together with a Letter and Extracts of Letters from Settlers in the Huron Tract, and Other Parts of Upper Canada, Containing Useful Information Respecting that Country. [Framlingham, England? : s.n., 1833?].

Goderich, Ontario: The Healthiest, Coolest, and Prettiest Town in Canada. Goderich: Citizens' Committee, [1895?].

Johnston, William. History of the County of Perth from 1825 to 1902. Stratford: W.M. O'Beirne, 1903.

Jordan, J. A. The Grosse-Isle Tragedy and the Monument to the Irish Fever Victims, 1847 : Reprinted, with Additional Information and Illustrations, from the Daily Telegraph's Commemorative Souvenir, Issued on the Occasion of the Unveiling of the National Memorial on the 15th August, 1909, Including a Full Account of the Dedicatory Ceremonies, Sermon, Speeches, etc.

Macfarlane Lizars, Robina and Kathleen. In the Days of the Canada Company: The Story of the Settlement of the Huron Tract and a View of the Social Life of the Period, 1825-1850. Toronto: W. Briggs; Montreal : C.W. Coates, 1896.

Moodie, Susanna. Roughing it in the Bush. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1988 [first published 1852].

A Statement of Facts, and Correspondence, Connected with Certain Public Improvements in the Huron Tract, Including a Railroad to Goderich: To which is Added some Information upon Matters Relating to the Canada Company. By Frederick Widder. [Toronto? : s.n.], 1853.


Clarke, Brian P. Piety and Nationalism Lay Voluntary Associations and the Creation of an Irish-Catholic Community in Toronto, 1850-1895. Montreal; Buffalo: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1993.

Clarke, John. Land, Power and Economics on the Frontier of Upper Canada. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2001.

Clarke, John. The Ordinary People of Essex Environment, Culture, and Economy on the Frontier of Upper Canada. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2010.

Elliott, Bruce S. Irish Migrants in the Canadas a New Approach. 2nd ed. ed. Kingston [Ont.]: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2004.

Guillet, Edwin C. Pioneer Settlements in Upper Canada. Toronto, [Ontario]: University of Toronto Press, 1969.

Harris, Cole. The Reluctant Land Society, Space, and Environment in Canada before Confederation. Vancouver: UBC Press, 2008.

Houston, Cecil J. Irish Emigration and Canadian Settlement : Patterns, Links, and Letters, edited by Smyth, William J. Toronto; Buffalo: University of Toronto Press; Belfast: Ulster Historical Foundation, 1990.

Houston, Cecil J. Irish Emigration and Canadian Settlement Patterns, Links, and Letters, edited by Smyth, William J. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1990.

Irish and Scottish Encounters with Indigenous Peoples Canada, the United States, New Zealand, and Australia, edited by Wilson, David A., Graeme Morton. Montreal & Kingston : McGill-Queen's University Press, 2013.

Irish Nationalism in Canada, edited by Wilson, David A. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2009.

Kohli, Marjorie. The Golden Bridge Young Immigrants to Canada, 1833-1939. Toronto : Natural Heritage Books, 2003.

Lee, Robert C. The Canada Company and the Huron Tract, 1826-1853: Personalities, Profits and Politics. Toronto: Natural Heritage Books, c2004.

McGowan, Mark George. The Waning of the Green Catholics, the Irish, and Identity in Toronto, 1887-1922. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1999.

Whyte, Robert. Robert Whyte's 1847 Famine Ship Diary : The Journey of an Irish Coffin Ship, edited by Mangan, James J. Cork, Ireland : Mercier Press, 1994.

Maps & Tracts


Census 1851-52

Browse by District Number and then Sub-District Number to find census schedules by location. Huron County, for example, is district 16. Nearby counties include Lambton (district 18), Middlesex (23), and Perth (29).

Search the 1851 Census

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1851-52 Census Districts & Sub-Districts - Canada West

Census of the Canadas 1851-52: Volume 1: Personal Census. Quebec, 1853.

Census of the Canadas 1851-52: Volume 2: Agricultural Produce, Mills, Manufactories, Houses, Schools, Public Buildings, Places of Worship, etc.. Quebec, 1855.


Canadian County Atlas Digital Project (McGill University)

Map of the Province of Upper Canada shewing the organized part thereof and the adjacent Country. Compiled by James G. Chewett Assistant Draughtsman Under the direction of Thomas Ridout Surveyor General (1824)

A map of the province of Upper Canada describing all the new settlements, townships, etc. with the countries adjacent from Quebec to Lake Huron (1835)

Colton Map of Upper Canada (1857)

Illustrated historical atlas of the county of Huron, Ont.: Compiled, drawn and published from personal examinations and surveys by H. Belden & Co. (1879)

Use these detailed maps for a neighbourhood sketch: businesses, taverns, churches, schools, associations and other buildings that can help you understand where Torontonians worked, how they lived, what they believed, and what they did for fun.

Goad's Fire Insurance Plans - In Print

Goad's Fire Insurance Plan of Zurich, ON, 1896

Goad's Fire Insurance Plan of Gorrie, ON, 1885

New map of the County of Perth, 1888

Goad's Fire Insurance Plan of Listowel, ON, 1894 (Rev. in 1913)

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The Attic


Huron Area Newspapers

Huron Gazette, 1848-49

Goderich Star, 1868

Huron Signal, 1848-90

National Newspapers

For the micofilm version, go to the Media Commons Library on the 3rd Floor of Robarts.


Comprises The Evening Star (1894-1900), The Toronto Daily Star (1900-1971), and The Toronto Star (1971-2015).


Irish Canadian

Printing: Very difficult in Google News. The only real way to print is to use ALT-PrtScr (Print Screen) on your computer: this will copy the page. Then paste the image into a word document where you can crop it.


Zooming: Click the zoom in and out magnifying glass icons in the top-right of the horizontal blue bar above the newspaper pages.


Printing: Click the print icon in the top-right corner.


Zooming: Click the zoom in and out icons in the bottom-right corner.


Search: Irish Canadian 1863-1875 (UofT: Paper of Record)

American Newspapers

New York Daily Tribune, 1842-1866

America's Historical Newspapers

Chronicling America: Historic American Newpapers

Quebec Newspapers

Quebec Spectator, 1848 (Google News Archive)

Morning Courier for the Country (Montreal), 1835-41

More Primary Sources


Encyclopedias & Dictionaries


Dictionary of Canadian Biography

With more than 9,000 articles on subjects ranging from politics, law, engineering, and religion to literature, painting, medicine, and sport, this encyclopedia is a key resource for Irish studies. The entries, written by established academics, contain bibliographies to guide students in further research. The 9-volume set is so detailed that you get thorough articles on a wide range of people, from internationally-famous figures such as the poet W.B. Yeats to lesser-known persons such as Denis Kilbride, a 19th Century agrarian campaigner and MP.


Ireland and the Americas: Culture, Politics, and History - A Multidisciplinary Encyclopedia

Canadian Encyclopedia

Both online and in print, and containing more than 1,500 articles, this 5-volume set is the major encyclopedia for Celtic studies.


Oxford Companion to Irish History

Gale Literature Criticism

Encyclopedia of Literature in Canada, 2002.

Cambridge Companion to Canadian Literature, 2017

Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature, 1997

Article Databases

Search Summon

Known as Summon, this interdisciplinary database is UofT's largest--and your best bet when more focused databases let you down. It combs through more than 1,200 databases, journal packages, e-book collections, and other resources ranging from the sciences to the social sciences and humanities. At its best, Summon finds relevant results you won't find elsewhere; at its worst, however, Summon can overwhelm you will a mish-mash of results from different subject areas.


Everything Search

Advanced Search

Covering the history of the United States and Canada, America History & Life indexes more than 1,800 journals from 1895 to the present.

Historical Abstracts covers the history of the world (excluding the United States and Canada) from 1450 to the present. The database contains over half a million annotated entries.


MLA International Bibliography

Canadian Business & Current Affairs Database (CBCA)

Bibliography of British & Irish History (BBIH)

Catalogue Search


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