Tutorial video for accessing ALE from home during Covid-19:
Currently the largest online genealogy resource available
Includes over 10,000 collections and billions of records from the US, UK, Canada, Ireland and other countries
New content is added weekly
Available at all Community Hubs of the Thunder Bay Public Library
Access more than 400 years of newspapers, obituaries, and family history records from 32 countries. You can search, read, save, and share them all!
The TBPL collection includes 3,500+ photographs, some dating back to the mid-1800s. Photographs are available for use at the Brodie Resource Library or online through the Gateway to Northwestern Ontario History. Copyright restrictions may apply.
The TBPL collection also includes newspapers on microfilm from 1875 to the present (Fort William and Port Arthur); along with Henderson City Directories (1884-2004), City Phonebooks, the Fort William Newspaper Index (1933-1970), and newspaper clippings and local pamphlet material from the late 1950s to 1989. Full text of these materials can be used at the Brodie Resource Library. Some newspaper indexes are also available online through the Gateway to Northwestern Ontario History.
The Gateway to Northwestern Ontario History is a virtual gallery of historic photographs, books, drawings and artifacts from the libraries and museums of Northwestern Ontario. The collection is managed by the Thunder Bay Public Library and hosted by OurDigitalWorld. It provides access (full text and/or index records) to the historical digital collections of libraries, archives, museums, historical societies, government agencies, and private collections from across Thunder Bay, Ontario, and Canada. Copyright restrictions may apply. Questions or comments about the database as part of the Thunder Bay Public Library's online collection will be addressed on an individual basis in accordance with TBPL Policies.
The effects of World War One could be felt every day in Fort William and Port Arthur communities between 1914 and 1918. The local newspapers printed Victory Loan advertisements, editorial reports, and stories on an almost daily basis. While the impact of World War One is felt differently today, it is no less significant than it was 100 years ago. Over the next four years, the World War One - Thunder Bay Centennial will commemorate this time in history through stories, displays, exhibits, and more.
Indexes & Directories
Birth, Marriage & Death
These indexes cover notices for births, marriages, and deaths as published by the Thunder Bay Sentinel, Fort William Daily Times Journal, Port Arthur News-Chronicle, or the Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal.Full text articles can be viewed on microfilm at the Brodie Resource Library.
- Thunder Bay Sentinel: Birth, Marriage & Death Index (1875-1879 / 1891-1895)
- Fort William Daily Times Journal: Birth, Marriage & Death Index (1900-1913)
- Fort William Daily Times Journal: Obituary Index (1900-1972)
- Port Arthur Daily News/News-Chronicle: Obituary Index (1906-1972)
- Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal: Obituary Index:
Social Notices and News
These indexes cover notices for birth, marriage, news, retirements, anniversaries, divorce, military records and more as published in the Port Arthur Daily News, Port Arthur News-Chronicle or the Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal. Full text articles can be viewed on microfilm at the Brodie Resource Library.
- Fort William Daily Times Journal:
- Port Arthur Daily News / News-Chronicle:
- 1915-1942 (Also included: war references from Aug-Dec 1914)
- Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal:
- July 1972-1979
Sponsorship of many of the above indexes and collections is generously provided by:
2000+ historical maps related to Thunder Bay and Canada can be accessed via the Gateway to Northwestern Ontario History
The main map collection (housed at the Brodie Resource Library) includes: mineral deposits, mining, aeromagnetics, geological resources, water and forest resources among other subjects
There are also nautical and shipwreck maps housed at the library, as well as maps which delve into recreational areas such as fishing and canoe trails
Ontario Genealogical Society Collection
The Thunder Bay branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society houses their library of resources at the Brodie Resource Library for the benefit of genealogy enthusiasts. The OGS Collection is detailed in this Holdings Report and includes:
OGS newsletters and reports
Print resources pertaining to Thunder Bay and District
Guides, how-tos, directories, indexes and bibliographies that concentrate on Ontario region
Information on researching other areas of Canada and outside of Canada
Death and birth records
- Key to the Ancient Parish Registers of England and Wales (016.9293 BUR)
- Checklist of Parish Registers 1986: Government of Canada (Brodie Resource Library - Reference Services)
- Inventory of Cemeteries in Ontario (OGS collection)
- Ontario, Canada, Catholic Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1747-1967 (Ancestry Library Edition)
- Ontario Marriage Notices (929.3713 WIL)
- County Marriage Registers of Ontario (OGS collection)
- Marriage Notices of Ontario (OGS collection)
- Marriage Bonds of Ontario: 1803-1834 (929.3717 WIL)
- Death Notices of Ontario (929.3717 REI)
- Northwestern Ontario Burial Index (OGS collection)
- City of Thunder Bay Burial Index (OGS collection)
- Birth, Marriage and Death Notices extracted from the Fort William Daily Times Journal: January 1, 1900 - December 31, 1912 (929.371312 BIR)
- Stanley Hill Cemetery 1901-2001: an illustrated history (929.50971312 NIC)
- Obituary Index (Brodie Resource Library - Reference Services)
- OGS Census Files (OGS collection)
- Census Records for the Counties of Canada West for the Years 1851-1861 (OGS collection)