Historic Canadian Census information is made available 90 years after it was first reported. The process is regulated under the Privacy Act.

National on-line census information for Canada is available for the following years, from various sources:

For the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) data from 1851-1921 the data can be searched and scans of the census pages can be viewed. However, that data has not been transcribed, as has the Automated Genealogy 1901 and 1911 census data. The use of the LAC census data is not discussed here in detail at this time.

The most popular census data used is 1911 as it is the last published census, all of which has been transcribed by volunteers as part of the Automated Genealogy project. The 1901 data has also been transcribed and links are being made by the volunteers between the data sets for 1901 and 1911. The 1911 data is also being linked to Attestation Papers for WWI Soldiers, which are available on-line from Library and Archives Canada.