Kanata is one of the largest suburbs of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Located about west-southwest of the city's Downtown, Kanata has a population of 101,760 as of 2011 and is growing rapidly. Before it was amalgamated into Ottawa in 2001, it was one of the fastest growing cities in Canada and the fastest growing community in Eastern Ontario. Located just to the west of the National Capital Commission Greenbelt, it is one of the largest of several communities that surround central Ottawa. It is a planned community and an important hi-tech centre.
It remained mainly agricultural until the 1960s when it became the site of heavy development. Modern Kanata is largely the creation of Bill Teron, a developer and urban planner who purchased over of rural land and set about building a model community. Unlike other suburbs, Kanata was designed to have a mix of densities and commercial and residential properties. It contained large amounts of open space, and was to be surrounded by a greenbelt. A reflection of the garden city movement, the area was divided into a series of communities, each of which was intended to have their own commercial centres and unique cultures. These include Beaverbrook, Glen Cairn, Bridlewood, Katimavik, Hazeldean, Morgan's Grant, and Kanata Lakes.
The community grew rapidly due to the influx of high tech workers looking to capitalize on the new economical cityscape. The Province of Ontario incorporated Kanata as a city in 1978 out of the Township of March, and portions of the Township of Goulbourn and the Township of Nepean (subsequently the City of Nepean). It remained a city until 2001, when the province created a new (amalgamated) City of Ottawa that included the City of Kanata (pop. 59,700). As of the 2006 census, the population of Kanata had increased to 85,000, and is now estimated to be just over 90,000.
The city became an important hi-tech centre. DEC was one of the pioneer technology companies in Kanata. The DEC campus has been successively Digital, Compaq, HP, and is now the Gilmore Printing group of companies. Kanata remains home to many of the major hi-tech employers of Ottawa, such as Avaya, Juniper Networks, Research In Motion now BlackBerry, Mitel, March Networks, Alcatel-Lucent, Bridgewater Systems, DragonWave, Solace Systems, CounterPath Corporation, Protecode, Dell Canada, HP, Smart Technologies, Norpak, MDS Nordion, Breconridge, AMCC, and Cisco Systems, Inc.. Nortel Technology and the former Bell-Northern Research had a major campus of buildings just outside the Kanata boundary to the East. The hi-tech industry is clustered along March Road, in the Kanata North Business Park and Kanata Research Park, and along Eagleson Road, in the Kanata South Business Park.
Map of Ottawa and Carleton County from Wikipedia Commons
The primary source for basic documents (vital statistics, land records, wills) for people who lived in the Province of Ontario is the Archives of Ontario, 134 Ian Macdonald Blvd, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M7A 2C5.
Civil registration did not begin in the province until 1869. Before then there may be church records of baptisms and burials. For the most part these are still held by the denomination who recorded them. Copies of marriage records made pre-1869 had to be sent by individual clergymen to the registrar of the county in which the marriage took place. These marriage records are available through Ontario Archives, on micorfilm through LDS libraries, and on paid and unpaid websites, but because they were copied at the registrars' offices, they cannot be considered a primary source.
Vital Records after 1869
Birth, marriage and death registrations are not open to the public until a specific number of years after the event occurred. Births to 1915 are now available [October 2014]; dates for marriages and deaths are later. Birth and death registration was not universally carried out in the early years after its adoption. Deaths were more apt to be reported than births for several years. The more rural the area, the less likely it would be that these happenings were reported to the authorities.
Land Records and Wills
Information on how to access land records and wills is best sought on the Archives of Ontario website. An ancestor's land holding might be found on Canadian County Atlas Digital Project if he was in occupancy circa 1878.
Association for the Preservation of Ontario Land Registry Office Documents (APOLROD). A list of Land Registry Offices for all Counties of Ontario.
The original censuses are in the hands of Library and Archives Canada, known to Canadians as "LAC". Copies of original microfilms are online at the LAC website for all censuses up to 1911. Each census database is preceded with an explanation of the geographical area covered, the amount of material retained (some census division material has been lost), the questions on the census form, and whether there is a name index. Census divisions were redrawn as the population increased and more land was inhabited. The 1921 census is only available through Ancestry.ca, but it is free-to-view.
E-books and Books
Researching in Eastern Ontario
The website of the Ottawa Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society offers a number of search engines for databases of material they maintain:
The Society covers the counties of Carleton (combined with the city of Ottawa), Lanark, Renfrew, Prescott and Russell. There is a note on the website that the URL will be changing soon (Jun 2012). It may be best to “google” the Ottawa Branch of OGS.