Find your ancestors in Canadian Emigration: 1826 Parliamentary papers

The official title of this parliamentary travel and migration record is:

“Return of the Assessed Value of the Townships in the Newcastle District in Western Canada, which were settled by Pauper Emigrants from Ireland, between the years 1825 and 1828 at the public expense: Of the number of various Emigration Societies formed in Canada in 1840, by Canadian Proprietors desirous of Settling Emigrants from Great Britain and Ireland upon their Estates. (1848)”.

This parliamentary paper publishes the correspondence and extensive supporting documents of the British government with the Governor-General of Canada concerning the settlement of poor Irish in the Newcastle District in 1826, or “Mr. Robinson’s Emigrants” as they became known. This was the result of a Commons request to be furnished information on the settlement as it had been publicly funded.

Typical Entry

Initially the Governor-General just sent updated valuations of the relevant townships (Ashpodel, Douro, Dummer, Emily, Ennismore, Ops, Otonabee and Smith) which had since be designated as part of the District of Colbourne. But following further demands for information he sent a detailed breakdown of every plot settled by Irish paupers in 1826 by Peter Robinson. The details listed include:

- Name of the 1826 settler

- Number in the settler’s family

- Lot number

- Concession

- Acreage

- Number of acres cleared by 1847

- Number of horses and horned cattle on the plot

- Name of present occupants on lot

- Relationship of occupants to settler

- Other critical pieces of information

In total around 260 plots are covered, giving details of over 700 people. While this is a short publication, it is an essential migration resource for those who became known as the Robinson Irish settlers and indeed anyone in Southern Ontario with an Irish family history.