Before online databases existed, there were physical record books kept of employment at government offices. Like the Victorian equivalent of today's corporate intranet or internet site, these record books would have been used to find out who did what, when and where.
The records give family history researchers a unique opportunity to find out how an ancestor's career might have progressed and how much they earned, as well as offer personal individual information such as birth date, age, date of first appointment, years at post, promotion to present rank, creed or religion and nationality of origin.
The records are available fully indexed and fully searchable online for the first time and help paint a more vivid picture of the working life of Canadians just before the turn of the 20th Century. They also provide a fascinating comparison of how the salaries and job titles differed from today.
The collection includes people employed in departments of the Canadian government, including:
· Department of Agriculture
· Department of Customs
· Department of Finance
· Department of the House of Commons
· Department of Indian Affairs
· Department of Inland Revenue
· Department of the Interior
· Department of Justice
· Department of Marine and Fisheries
· Department of Militia and Defense
· Department of Public Printing and Stationary
· Department of Public Works
· Department of Railways and Canals
· Department of the Secretary of State
· Governor General's Secretary's Office
· Mounted Police Force
· Office of the Auditor General
· Office of the High Commissioner for Canada
· Post Office Department
· Privy Council Office
· Senate of Canada
Karen Peterson, Marketing Director, Ancestry.ca, comments: "Access to detailed records is essential for anyone researching their family history as the more information they have, the clearer the story of their family's past will become. Collections such as the Canadian Civil Servants, which includes information on occupation, salary and career development, are vital as they enable family history enthusiasts to better understand how their ancestors lived by providing historical, factual context to their lives."