This database contains an index of details extracted from petitions made for grants of land in Nova Scotia.
Permanent European settlement in Nova Scotia began with the French in 1604. The area would alternate between British and French control into the next century, with the British conquering Acadia in 1710 and then establishing Halifax in 1749. Britain took final control in 1763 after the Seven Years’ War. As the British solidified their hold on the region, they tried to encourage settlement.
The records indexed in this database relate to petitions made for grants of land. They include Loyalists looking to establish a new home after the Revolutionary War, Acadians and French who found themselves British subjects, residents and settlers who had not yet been granted lands they were living on, "black men employed in the King's service during the late war," and others.
New Brunswick was part of Nova Scotia until 1784, and you will find records for early New Brunswick in this database as well.
What You Can Find in the Records
The original records include licenses of occupation, warrants to survey, grants, surveyors' reports and certificates, petitions for land grants, boundaries and descriptions of land and lots, receipts, protests against petitions, and similar documents related to land grants. Petitions sometimes asked for other items to assist in settlement as well: tools, ammunition, clothes, and building materials.
The following details have been extracted from the petitions for this database:
- place of land record
- record year
- names on land record
Images of the petitions are available on the Nova Scotia Archives website.