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Surrogate Court Records for Renfrew County

After 1858, the local Surrogate Courts in each county became responsible for all estate matters by Act of government. The same Act created a central office of the Surrogate Clerk for Ontario to maintain a province-wide index and prevent any duplication of grants of probate or administration as a result of the new localized surrogate system. As well, in 1858, the first General Rules and Orders for the Surrogate Courts were established. This new Surrogate Court system remains substantially unchanged to the present day.

Using these court records, genealogists can establish a varying range of information such as date of death, family relationships, and land ownership. If the person died testate, then a copy of the will is usually included.

The UOVGG Resource Library has 3 microfilms of Renfrew County Surrogate Court Records. For your benefit, the following lists for the contents of the microfilms are provided:

GS 2, Reel 174, 1864-1877

GS 2, Reel 175, 1878-1894

GS 2, Reel 176, 1895-1903

Wills of estates that involved land ownership are in County Land Records Offices.

Estate Files - 1867 to 1930

Estate files contain all the documents needed to grant Letters of Probate or Letters of Administration, including the petition for probate or administration, the original signed Will, oaths of executors or administrators, tally of assets, and related evidence.

Microfilms of Estate Files can be ordered by inter-library loan from the Ontario Archives. Go to their website for instructions in ordering the appropriate microfilm. A handy guide is also available.

For another useful guide have a look at “Surrogate Court Records at the Archives of Ontario” by Catherine Shepard published by the Ontario Genealogical Society in 1984. A copy is available in the UOVGG Reference Library.

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