Irish-Canadians Hold Symposium

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In 2005, the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) went into partnership with the National Archives of Ireland (NAI) to bring the 1901 and 1911 Census to the Internet. In addition to bringing the census to the Internet, the LAC has also hosted—over the past five years—two symposiums, and has expanded its coverage of Irish-Canadian subjects by hosting "The Shamrock and the Maple Leaf", a multi-discipline website which takes you into the music, the photos, and essays written by Irish-Canadians

The symposium addressed the outcome of the Irish Diaspora in Canada by looking at the politics of Ireland and Canada, especially the Fenian Raids; Irish History and the Modern Media; the Irish Culture: Print, Music, Language and Film; and the Famine and Commemoration.

But the part of the symposium which was of the most interest to genealogists was the three-part session "The Irish in Quebec", "The Census Research: 20th-Century Ireland", and the "1911 Census Part I and Part II".

Quebec has been receiving Irish immigrants since they starting leaving their homeland. In fact, Grosse-Île—the island where so many Irish died during the Famine Years from cholera and smallpox—has just had a database put together by Parks Canada and the Library and Archives Canada called, "In Quarantine: Life and Death on Grosse-Île, 1832-1937".

The LAC has indexed and digitized a variety of documents, such as lists of births and deaths at sea, hospital registers (personal effects of the people who died), journals, letters, photographs, and maps that you can search at

Another register which was put on the Internet right after the symposium took place is the "Immigrants to Canada",, which covers the names of immigrants pre-1865 who came to Canada, like the Irish orphans and declaration of aliens.

Catriona Crowe of the National Archives of Ireland brought us up-to-date on the Census of 1901 and 1911. She said that the indexing of the Irish Census Project is going along well, and you can see what has been done so far by going to

Keeping with the LAC's mandate to make Canada's documentary heritage to all the people of the world thorough the Internet, they showed off their latest project: digital images of Ireland and Canada on the social networking website,

People have already left comments on the Flickr site, and it seems to be a success. There are 84 maps, photos, tracts, and booklets online.

Videos presentations of the symposium will be added later this year on to They will each be 20 minutes long, and will be made by a selection of symposium speakers.

"The objective of the project is to explore new ways to improve access to and increase interaction with Canada's documentary heritage", says the press release for the launching of Flickr/YouTube.

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