Until 1971 Stouffville was a village on the border between the townships of Whitchurch and Markham in York County, Ontario, Canada. It is now the primary urban area within the Town of Whitchurch–Stouffville in York Region.
Founded in 1804 by Abraham Stouffer, the hamlet was originally named Stoufferville. Stouffer built a sawmill and grist-mill on the banks of Duffin's Creek in the 1820s. The community name was shortened to Stouffville when its first post office opened in 1832.
In 1877, Stouffville became an incorporated village. On January 1, 1971, the Village of Stouffville amalgamated with Whitchurch Township and was designated a community within the larger town of Whitchurch–Stouffville; with amalgamation, the boundary of the town was also moved four farm lots south of the original boundary of Main Street (the land was formerly a part of Markham Township). The population of urban Stouffville in 1971 was 5,036.
In 2003, a large 16th century Huron village was discovered in Stouffville during land development; approximately 2000 people once inhabited the site (Mantle Site), which included a palisade and more than 80 longhouses, yielding tens of thousands of artifacts.
Further information on Stouffville's growth during the 19th century will be found in Wikipedia's article, Whitchurch-Stouffville which contains an old map of the village.
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