Research and Reproductions
The Ontario Jewish Archives is open to researchers by appointment only. Please contact us to make an appointment.
On-site services include:
- Research and reading room
- Microfilm/fiche reader/printer/scanner
- Reproduction, including photocopying, scanning, photo reproduction, and copying of film and cassettes
- Professional reference staff to advise and assist with research queries
- Limited tours of our facility to special groups
The OJA has a variety of user fees to help with cost recovery for certain services. Please consult the following table for our fee structure
Please be aware that not all records are open for public access. Researchers should consult Archives' staff prior to their visit.
The OJA's records are subject to the Copyright Act. The Director and archivists would be happy to explain the implications of this legislation to their records. For more information about the Act, consult the Department of Justice Canada
Researchers should be aware of the fact that archival staff can assist with research for up to one hour. After that point, there is a fee that is charged for the research service. Click for fees.
The OJA possess the following types of genealogical sources. They include:
- Some family histories
- Jewish city directories for Toronto and London
- Jewish newspapers from Ontario
- A small number of records documenting marriages, naturalization, and circumcisions
- Some cemetery records
- Synagogue and Jewish fraternal society records
- Some immigration case files created by JIAS and the CJC
- Some ledgers from Jewish shipping agents that brought families over from Europe before the Second World War
Jewish City Directories:
Search the 1925 and 1931 Jewish City Directories Online
The OJA was a participant in the Archeion project Genealogy and the Family. Some of the documents on the site are therefore drawn from our holdings.
Researchers should note that some of the Toronto Jewish funeral homes have transferred their records to the Library And Archives Of Canada. These include Benjamin’s and Steeles-College Funeral Homes. Please see the Library And Archives Of Canada for more information.
Immigration and Naturalization Records:
The Library And Archives of Canada possesses passenger lists, ships manifests and immigration case files for Canadian immigrants. They also have census data from 1871 to 1911. Naturalization papers were also recently scanned and placed on-line. This was a joint initiative conducted by the Jewish Genealogical Society of Ottawa and the Jewish Genealogical Society of Montreal. The database includes indexed naturalization certificates from 1915-1932.
Vital Statistics Records:
The Archives of Ontario is the repository for vital statistic records in Ontario. They have birth records dating from 1869-1908, marriage records dating from c.1801 to 1933 and death records dating from 1869-1933.
Other General Sources for Jewish Genealogy:
Other organizations that possess genealogical sources relating to the Ontario Jewish Community include the City of Toronto Archives and the Canadian Jewish Genealogical Society of Canada (Toronto).
The best source for online Jewish genealogical information is JewishGen. This site was developed in the United States but has an international following. It includes a variety of databases, a family finder, discussion groups, mailing lists, shtetl links and much more.
Other sites of interest include: the Canada GenWeb Project, a genealogical website designed to assist researchers in locating existing online information; Pier 21, which holds material documenting immigration between 1928 and 1971 at Canada's busiest port; the American Family Immigration History Centre, which holds passenger arrival records for immigrants who arrived at Ellis Island;
Family Search, a free world-wide genealogical service of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.