March Township is a geographic township and former municipality originally part of Carleton County in eastern Ontario, Canada. It is currently part of the City of Ottawa. It is located in the western part of the county, bordered to the northwest by Torbolton Township, to the southwest by Huntley Township, to the east by Nepean, to the south by Goulbourn Township and to the north by the Ottawa River. According to the Canada 2001 Census, the Township had a population of approximately 26,650.
The township took its name from the 4th Duke of Richmond, Charles Lennox's subsidiary title, the Earl of March. The township was established in the 1820s. Early settlers in the area included Hamnett Kirkes Pinhey and Doctor Alexander James Christie.
By 1866, March was a post village with a population of about 100, situated in the township of March, and county of Carleton. The postmaster was T. Read. Citizens included W.H. Berry, brewer; George I McMurtry tanner, saddle and harness maker; William Boucher, saw mill proprietor; D Munroe, hotel keeper; Horace Pinhey, saw mill owner and D. McMurtry, general merchant.
A sketchmap from Ontario GenWeb gives a more visible outline of the townships.
The map of Carleton County circa 1951 from Ontario Archives locates the communities and physical features of the county. (Click at the bottom of the page to see the map enlarged.)
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 1914 are now available [October 2012]; 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. All of the original census (1851-1911) images are online with the exception of that for 1861. Not all of them are indexed. Later censuses are not yet available. Census divisions were redrawn as the population increased and more land was inhabited.
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.