Provincial Archives of New Brunswick

Index to New Brunswick Land Grants, 1784 - 1997 (RS686)

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This index contains information on more than 54,000 individuals and corporate bodies who acquired Crown land between 1784 and 1997. These documents list the distribution of Crown land and the names of the grantees. The grantee receives a legal document authorizing possession of the land. These records were created and maintained by the Surveyor General, cum Commissioner of Crown Lands, cum Commissioner of Lands and Mines, cum Minister of Natural Resources, cum Minister of Natural Resources and Energy. They were transferred to the Provincial Archives between 1985 and 1995.

More detail on the Land Grant records is available in the RS686 finding aid.

RS686 Finding Aid
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Notes On This Index

Name of Grantee:All individuals or corporate bodies such as churches were included in the index. For the most part, names are spelled as they appear on the grant. In the early years, a single grant could be issued to a large group of individuals; eg., 'John Doe and 200 others'. In these cases, all names were included in the index, and the name of John Doe was given an asterisk to indicate being at the head of the list.

Volume:Numerical or alphabetical code of the register containing the Land Grant.

Page Number:Page number within the Volume where grant begins. Page number was used for early grants only.

Grant Number:Unique number applied to the grant. After 1814 the numbers became consecutive and are still in use.

Grant Date:Date grant was issued.

County:County in which the land was situated at the time of the issuing of the grant. The county given in the index will not necessarily correspond to the modern-day county. During the history of New Brunswick, the number of counties increased from 8 to 15, and many new parishes were erected. The problem this causes researchers is evident from the fact that, for example, land above modern-day Edmundston might be said to be in Sunbury County* (Nova Scotia) before 1786; then in York County until 1832, then in Carleton County until 1844, then in Victoria County until 1873, and now in Madawaska County. The list below indicates the years in which the counties were erected.
1786    Charlotte County
1786    Kings County
1786    Northumberland County
1786    Queens County
1786    Restigouche County
1786    Saint John County
1786    Sunbury County
1786    Westmorland County
1786    York County

1826    Kent County
1832    Carleton County
1837    Gloucester County
1844    Victoria County
1845    Albert County
1873    Madawaska County

Modern cadestral maps show the present-day county in which land is situated.

*Sunbury County:  Researchers should also note that prior to the creation of New Brunswick as a separate province in 1784, the land north of the Bay of Fundy was administered by Nova Scotia and often referred to as Sunbury County. Thus, some grants record land in northern New Brunswick as being in Sunbury County.

Place:The name of the parish or township where the land was situated at the time of granting.

Plan:Indicates whether there is or is not a plan/map attached to the grant.

Acres:Indicates the size of the grant in acres.

Film Number:Reel of microfilm at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick containing the grant.

CommentsIncludes additional information taken from the grant itself or about the grant.